Im relatively new to the boards but i can share a little about what i know.
I understand where you are coming from, i was married for 17 years and have always had normal paps. So when i got my abnormal results in Aug. with the dx of HPV i was in shock. I knew what HPV was because of the commercials being aired here in NY and that it was considered an STI...i was not happy.
My now ex husband cheated on me as well about 10 years after we were married although he swears no actual "sex" took place....( yeah right) anyway, im still not sure about what they say inregard to having it for years and it not showing on paps, seems VERY strange to me but it seems to be what all the drs are saying so i guess i have to trust that. Not that it matters once you have to go through this.
As far as the colposcopy and the biopsy, my dr took four, and i only slightly felt one, the most uncomfortable part for me was the speculm (sp?) being in place for so long..that and my lower back started to hurt from the angle i was at.
My results came back as CIN III severe dysplasia. I never missed a pap and went every year because i was on the pill so in less than one year i went from normal paps to severe dysplasia.
Before and after, so far anyway, my dr has given me the same speech, it takes YEARS for this to progress. Yet each proceedure they test for cancer, kinda confuses me.
I had my leep on Sept. 15 and am still waiting for the results. I hope once again he tells me its not cancer, but from reading these posts and the research i have done i know that the many YEARS thing doesnt always ring true for everyone.
Hope this helps a little