Genital Herpes

Coping With Genital Herpes



Coping With and Accepting Genital Herpes

There are a variety of emotions that may occur with a diagnosis of genital herpes, such as fear, shock, anger, victimization, sadness, and shame. These feelings may last for a short while or a longer period of time.


Here are some suggestions to help you cope with genital herpes:


  • Go to a clinic or your doctor for a diagnosis, if you have not already.

Genital Herpes




  • Knowing for sure that you have genital herpes can help you to cope with your symptoms and allow you to begin to accept the fact that you have this condition.


  • Realize that you are not alone. Genital herpes is a common disease—1 in 5 people in the United States have it. There are many people experiencing similar emotions and symptoms as yours.   
  • If your anger about having genital herpes is a problem, seek professional help to allow you to put herpes into perspective. Actively seek answers to your questions, and get the facts on issues that are bothering you. You may also want to talk to someone at a self-help group or discuss your feelings with a trusted friend.



  • Talk to your doctor about appropriate treatment options.


  • Do not blame yourself or someone else because you have herpes. If you do, you may prevent yourself from healing emotionally and moving forward with your life.


  • If you are feeling hopeless or depressed, seek assistance as soon as possible by calling your doctor or a crisis hotline, or going to the emergency room. Counseling can help people whose lives are being significantly disrupted by herpes. A counselor can also help you with telling your partner.   
  • Support groups for people with genital herpes will provide you with the opportunity to talk to other people who have this disease.


You can also call the National Herpes Hotline (919-361-8488) to speak to someone who is knowledgeable about herpes and understands what you are going through. The hotline is available from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. 


 Ten Ways to Manage Your Herpes Symptoms