Ok, I am kind of new to this virus. I did not realize how uneducated that I was on this topic and how common it truly was, and I feel ignorant b/c I am in the medical profession. But, the point of my entry is that I have been with my boyfriend for 5 months. He and I are in a long distance relationship and we have never had sex. But, on my last visit to see him, he informed me that he had HPV. At first, I was just devastated and shocked. He told me that he had been trying to think of a way to tell me for months. But, I am so in love with this guy, and I could really see myself marrying him. But, I started doing research and to be frankly honest, I'm a little scared. I have all of these things running through my head, and I am trying so hard to be supportive and to deal with it. I love him and I am doing the best that I can. My only fear is the long-term effects. I mean, is it almost a definite that I am going to get HPV also? I mean, will we ever be able to have kids together? I also read that it can be spread just by lying in bed with someone. If thats the case, then I guess that I've got it too, because I am not going to shun him, and I'm not going to leave him. Because who am I to judge anyone who did the same things I have done. I've just been lucky obviously whenever I see the statistics. I also wonder, why are we not as educated on this virus as with others. If it is so common, why are we not being more educated about it? I just don't understand. Frankly, I am scared and I am confused. I really, really love this guy. He is wonderful and he is everything that I have ever wanted. But our society makes us shun those who are different and fear what we do not understand. I just want to understand better, so that I can be a comfort to him and not a burden. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. And any further info would be also. He and I have already decided to hold out of sex until we are both comfortable and ready with dealing with the consequences. I love him for his respect and honesty. I want to marry this guy, but we have just got to overcome this obstacle right now. I just need some help! I commend all of you for all of the support you offer and your strength. Thanks for listening to me!
I have HPV (genital warts) and I am with a partner that don't have it. It's a very hard thing to deal with and with me telling my boyfriend a couple months down the road that I have it wasn't the easiest thing to do. I too have been with my boyfriend for 5 months and I see myself marrying him as well. HPV is very common but yet very hard to understand since there is so many strains of the virus. If your boyfriend is going through treatment then they say that will reduce your chance of contracting this virus. HPV is an STD but not life threatening nor will it effect any way of you having a normal sex life with your boyfriend and it won't effect you in having kids either. My boyfriend and I have sex and he hasn't had signs or symptoms of warts yet. Like some posters have told me...if he loves me enough and we want to have babies then he will risk getting it or not...he knows that he is at risk everytime we have sex and that is something that has to be understood...I would definatally be greatful towards your boyfriend that he loved you and cared enough about you to tell you his situation. I have had warts for a little over a year now and I still have them because i have only under went one treatment but i have seen improvements. My boyfriend said if he was to ever get warts he wouldn't be mad at me because it's his fault as well...I hope I'm not coming off as talking about myself but I just want to let you know there is hope for a couple to have a healthy relationship when the other has HPV. That's awesome that you are being supportive the best that you can...that probably means the world to him. I don't know how he caught this and if he knew the girl had it he had been with peviously but unlike me i didn't have the choice to know...it was given to me by a cheating ex...so now that you have the choice and u know it's all on you girl. My boyfriend and I use condoms all the time and he hasn't gotten it but i am sure u are aware that condoms do help reduce the risk of getting std's but there is still a chance that u have that skin to skin contact. I would say if you really love this guy and u see a future with him...go for it girl...it's rare to find the love of your life.... Good luck and I'm sure you will do the right thing that is best for you ::hugs::
Last edited by angel_of_faith; 03-26-2005 at 09:38 PM.
thank you so much for that! You have given me so much more faith. I've been really down about it, but I love him and I really want to be with him. It was given to him by a cheating ex as well. I have been researching it so much, and I just don't want it to come between us. We are very open about talking about it with each other, and he is being so very patient with me about all of my questions. I know the risks that I am taking, and I really want to be with him. He is the greatest guy that I have ever met, and I am just hoping for the best for us. But, reading your comment has really helped ease alot of my anxiety. I just don't want him to think that I am afraid of him, because I know that he thinks that. But thank you once again! I've been hearing so much negativity, its good to finally see some hope for us.
Just letting you know that I am glad you are educating yourself on the subject and also you should have no trouble having kids........ THe only situations that i ve heard of/or read about were when people had severe cases of HPV that went untreated.....Best of luck to you....
I am glad I could help you concerned_gf. Thats what I am here for...help and support. I am on here atleast once or twice everyday if you have any questions or want to share anything with me or even if you just need to talk. I am just glad your boyfriend came out and told you this...he had a lot of guts to do that....he probably was fearing rejection like i did. He definatally cares about you and it's so hard to find these days girl. I feel dirty every once in a while and i'm sure your boyfriend feels the same way along with a lot of ppl that have HPV. I am so suprised that not a lot of people know what HPV is...it's scary knowing how wide spread it is...Welll i better head to bed Hope to hear from you again concerned_gf::hugs::
I thank you so much angel_of_faith for your comments. They are truly helping me. My boyfriend and I are doing well. I really love him and I just can't walk away from him, and I will not! The world will say I am crazy, but I would do anything for him! He is so amazing! Reading your comments helps me to keep the faith that he and I will be just fine. We are taking things slow,figuring out what to do next. Its hard for us both, but we are both just living life now. I was pretty much obsessing over it there for awhile, but these past few days we have just concentrated on us, and what our next step together will be. I really hope that you do not mind talking to me about this. I am just trying to better understand so that I can help him and be there for him. And I agree, it is quite scary how unknown HPV is, but how widespread it is. But, thanks again for everything. You are truly helping me out greatly and I am very grateful to you!! Best of luck with your boyfriend as well. I admire your courage and your willingness to help! Thank you so much!
concerned_gf-Your best bet would be for you and your boyfriend to sit down with an infectious disease doctor or specialist and discuss what your safer sex options are. This way you know the proper guidelines and can make your decisions about whatever level of risk you each find acceptable. I think it's great that this is out in the open between you two and you both can discuss it like adults! Best of luck to you both!
you`ll be fiiiiiiiiiiine, when I first found out I had it i was in shock too then i thought.. as many people that Ive had sex with, HPV is the least of my worries. I use protection but this you cant really protect yourself against. The medical world is spilt in deciding wether or not one had HPV even for life?! you`ll read articles that will say 1-2yrs the virus goes away on its own and other that say your bodies immune system suppresss the virus. Either way dont be scared, its a virus..and its attacks your immune system. Its not fatal no will it cause any discomfort, providing your not affected cervically. I have nothing but hope that soon there will be a wam bam 1 shot cure for it soon. Also...I know aloooooottaa colleges are doing HPV research soo its gettina alotta attention. Think positive. Live life. Take a 1 a day multivitamin, maybe some zinc, and garlic capsules..alll help build up your immune system. Also australian tea tree oil has said to work wonders...but make sure u dilute it with some vegetable oil, cuz that thing is sttrrong!! . Keep ya head up. I dont think its 4ever like most people say, I honestly dont. READ about it I swear Ive read like a 1000 articles 100000 websites....tons of articles with women after time coming up wit clear pap smears.. just BUILD UP THAT IMMUNE SYSTEM !
It sounds like most of the replies to this topic are from people who already have an STD. Of course if you get one, you have to accept it and move on. But concerned_gf, you don't have an std yet and why is that worth sacrificing?? You say you've only been with this guy for a few months...and this is a LDR??
I know from experience that it is easy to be blind sighted by love during the first few months of a relationship. Especially when it is a long distance relationship. I've been there. When you are with that person, you think they are your soulmate and that there is no else out there better suited for you. But you must see through those rose colored glasses and realize that there ARE many opportunities out there. You can find someone out there that you will love just as much if not more than this guy, who will be STD free.
It isn't fair to you to sacrifice in this relationship. You are only given one body in this life, and you should cherish it. You should care for it more than anything else in your life.
Concerned_gf, I know you've fallen in love with this guy. But please think hard about this. There are other guys out there that are just good for you who are std free. This current guy can easily find another girl who already has hpv. Don't sacrifice your wellness for him.
Look at the problems associated with HPV:
"Low-risk papilloma viruses cause warts but not cervical cancer. High-risk viruses, however, cause cervical cancer and also are associated with vulvar cancer, anal cancer, and cancer of the penis (a rare cancer). Although most HPV infections do not progress to cancer, it is particularly important for women who have cervical dysplasia to have regular Pap smears. Potentially pre-cancerous cervical disease is readily treatable.
Genital warts may cause a number of problems during pregnancy. Sometimes they enlarge during pregnancy, making urination difficult. If the warts are on the vaginal wall, they can make the vagina less elastic and cause obstruction during delivery.
Rarely, infants born to women with genital warts develop laryngeal papillomatosis (warts in the throat). Although uncommon, it is a potentially life-threatening condition for the child, requiring frequent laser surgery to prevent obstruction of the airways."
I'm sure this guy didn't know he was going to get hpv. But that doesn't mean you have to willing contract it. Concerned_gf, I really hope you take what I've said into consideration. I'm here for you.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion . . . and mine differs from the opinion of Justin above. I agree with all the others on this thread who have encouraged you to stay with your boyfriend
I am pretty well informed on the subject of HPV, both from my ob/gyn and from reading many studies and articles and talking to those who have contracted it. There are MANY documented strains of the virus. (I keep hearing different figures, but my ob/gyn quoted 50something, so I'll go with that one.) The following is also a real and accurate statistic:
75% - 80% of sexually active people will contract a strain of the HPV virus at some point in their life.
Do you have a large circle of girlfriends? If you have a close enough relationship with your girlfriends to discuss such things, you should throw the subject of HPV out on the table. Chances are that at LEAST one of your girlfriends has contracted this virus and has had an abnormal pap.
HPV is a skin to skin contracted STD. Not even condoms can prevent the spread, hence the high statistic of those who have contracted it. Unless you plan on having only one sexual partner in your lifetime, the chance that you will contract the virus somewhere along the line is high. You may KNOW that you have contracted it (ie.) warts or showing up in your pap, or you may NOT EVER know that you have contracted it. The virus can lie dormant for years and years, if not forever. It is a sneaky virus.
I do not mean to belittle the severity of HPV. It is indeed an STD and CAN indeed cause problems. Low risk HPV causes warts. While the wart related problems Justin pointed out may be possible, they are highly unlikely. I think there is a better chance of you being struck by lightening High risk HPV can cause cancer in females, IF LEFT UNTREATED FOR YEARS. This is the importance of the yearly pap smear . . . so that the doctor can detect and prevent the spread of any precancerous cells through treatment. Just so you will be aware, though, I will fill you in on the scariest thing I have heard about HPV related female problems: An advanced stage of precancerous cervical cells may require much invasive treatment and may weaken the cervix, making it difficult to carry a child.
In conclusion, please don't be scared. Sounds like you have a good man . . . and at the risk of sounding cliche, a good man is hard to find
Ya'll are in love . . . be happy, keep the communication flowing, stay on top of your health, and you should be O.K.
It sounds like most of the replies to this topic are from people who already have an STD. Of course if you get one, you have to accept it and move on. But concerned_gf, you don't have an std yet and why is that worth sacrificing??
You can find someone out there that you will love just as much if not more than this guy, who will be STD free.
There are other guys out there that are just good for you who are std free. This current guy can easily find another girl who already has hpv.
You have some good points, and whether or not to assume this risk is a very personal decision that concerned_gf will have to make for herself. Everyone has a different level of risk that they are willing to accept in life. Even the info you quote points out that most of these risks are VERY rare - but they are there.
As for can she find a guy who is STD free? Certainly they are out there, but how will she find one? When it comes to HPV in men, the only real guarantee would be virginity and a lack of other types of sexual experience. And I do not mean to insult this, certainly having a sexually inexperienced partner is very important to a lot of people.
For an asymptomatic man, there are no tests to reliably detect HPV. And with an 80% infection rate, the odds are good that the next man she dates will also be infected, even if he doesn't know it. It is possible that she breaks up with this guy only to find that her next boyfriend also has the virus! Every relationship has problems, and all humans have flaws. This guy has HPV, the next guy may not, but he will have something wrong. Whether that thing is better or worse than HPV is a decision only she can make.
I am not coming into this with an unbiased view. I do have HPV, and as far as we could tell, my husband did not when we first got together. We have been together for over three years now, and we are intimate, so we assume that he is now infected. But he has never had a visible outbreak, and it isn't something we are too concerned about. This would not be the right choice for every couple, but it is for us.
This is a difficult situation with lots of gray areas.
Thank you all for the comments. There are so many good points...like analog2000 pointed out, whose to say that the next guy that I could possibly date doesn't have something worse like HIV or Hep C? I mean, this whole thing has truly opened my eyes about a lot of things and I have a very open relationship with my mother and I have talked to her about this. She told me that if it is worth it, then love will always find a way, and I believe that. Yes, we have not been together very long, but he makes me feel like I have never felt before. You can never put a time limit on love, its not possible. I know I am taking huge risks, that is why he and I have refrained from sex until we are both sure that this is what we truly want. I do have to respect his honesty for telling me in the first place. I know it was hard for him, and I know that he didn't have to tell me. Most guys probably would not. He cares a lot about me, it is very obvious, and I care a lot about him. But, I think that we are being pretty responsible about the situation and using out heads. We are not jumping into anything, and we are being very open. I do love him, and I don't care what the world thinks. Who knows, I could develop it myself. I haven't been perfect, I've been with other people! And if the statistics are true, then its almost a definite that I have some form of HPV and I don't even know it! I am not going to quarantine the man I love because of a virus. Love is stronger than that, and in the end, I think our love will prevail. I am just being cautious now and we are taking our time and talking things out. I've been stressing out about this whole situation, and I've been really stressed and hateful, and I am tired of being that way. I am just going to enjoy my life and I am going to enjoy him. We do not have to have sex right now to be happy. We have already proven that!! But, I thank everyone so much for the comments. I am seeing both sides and a bigger picture! Please keep them coming and thanks again everyone!
Who knows, I could develop it myself. I haven't been perfect, I've been with other people! And if the statistics are true, then its almost a definite that I have some form of HPV and I don't even know it!
Everyone defines risk differently. I would not consider the risks of HPV to be "huge." There is the risk of developing cervical cancer, but the vast majority of people with HPV will never have any problems. Even in a worse case scenario, cervical cancer is highly treatable. As you said, you could already have the virus and not know, just like most of the people infected.
The best thing you can do is continue to get regular gyno care and pap smears. But that is really something you should be doing anyway.
I'm glad you're feeling better about everything now that you have more info.