A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

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Amy Moore, Reporter • February 14, 2024

Just the tip: Genital Herpes


A lusty night in heaven can quickly inflict a hellish state of contemplation.

Itchy sores unlike any ingrown hair radiate pain and foster fear in your psyche. A few blisters in your crotch will forever change your perspective about sex.

Genital herpes, or HSV-2, is easy to get and impossible to get rid of; simple skin-to-skin contact with a carrier can equal infection.

Days after a raunchy roll-about with a newly found partner, what looked like pimples appeared on my pubic bone. There were no other symptoms or noticeable sensations associated with the bumps, but their appearance perpetuated darkness in my thoughts.

The feelings of intense attraction toward the new lover quickly transformed to aversion and outrage.

We were both explicit about our sexual history and present state of being STD free.

Had she lied to me? How could this happen to me?

I felt like a witch had cast a curse on me to prevent me from ever finding love. How could anybody ever love me with this new contagion?

In America, genital herpes is common in sexually active people. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention said one in six people between the ages of 14 and 49 have genital herpes. The statistics are a role of the dice.

For the next few weeks I feared any contact with potential partners for fear of the connection escalating to sex. The thought of having to tell them I had what I thought was genital herpes made me want to curl into a ball of depression and stay there, embracing myself forever.

Genital herpes can be diagnosed through a blood test or swabbing the fluid from a sore. Clinics are open to the public and generally free, but the fear of testing positive kept me from going. When a few more bumps appeared I decided it was time to get a definitive answer from a medical professional.

After discussing what was going on with the nurse, she had me drop my drawers to further assess the anomalies on my crotch.

Clinics often tell you “no news is good news,” but after a week I couldn’t bear the anxiety anymore; I called the lab just to be sure.

The tests all came back negative.

For weeks leading up to getting tested, a blanket of sorrow and self-loathing came over me. I prepared for a life of being unwanted and alone. Definitions and description of genital herpes found on the internet did little to lessen the emotional flooding.

Everyone is suseptible to STDs.

The whirlwind of terror I experienced luckily wasn’t as serious as I believed. Getting tested regularly for the many STDs circulating the world is the responsible thing to do. Clear communication and transparency with partners before intimacy is a duty of respect and honesty.

If anyone has what they think could be genital herpes or any STD, see a medical professional as soon as possible. STDs are no joke.

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  • M

    MitchJan 18, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    Wish I could contact Dr Sebi, but unfortunately he passed away last year. Anyone else who knew his work I could contact?