Name: Cait 
Age: 19 
Occupation: Full time college student. 
Year Infected: I believe it was Sept. 2000 
Prodromes: Itchy, tingly, burning down there. Very painful. 
Method of control: Famvir (suppressive treatment) ...It's only been my second day on it, and I don't feel any better.

 My Story: It was a day before my monthly period, November 30, 2000, when I noticed that I had a "yeast infection." I thought to myself "No problem. I'll go to the store and pick up some monistat 7 and be on my way." Occasionally I'll get a yeast infection before my period, so I saw no need in worrying. I began the monistat as soon as I got home. I noticed no change in the tingly feeling and no change in the itching feeling either. I just figured that after a couple of days I'd be fine. 

On December 1, 2000, the itching and tingly feeling were getting worse. There was a great deal of pain that I never felt down there before. I thought maybe my period this month was worse and that was causing the pain. The next day, Saturday, was hell. That afternoon I went to the mall with my boyfriend. The pain got worse as the day progressed. That night my boyfriend and I went to a friends house for a small gathering. I tried to pee, but couldn't because it was stinging like crazy. I was crying my eyes out. I told my friends what was going on, and they said that I probably had a URI and not to worry. They gave me cranberry juice and told me to relax. Soon after that I began to run a temperature of 102 degrees. I decided to go home and sleep it off, but told my best friend that if I was in pain the following day she would have to take me to the ER. I w! as too scared to tell my mom for fear she would think I was gross for having a URI and a yeast infection. 

The next day, I was in the ER. The pain didn't get any better. I was examined a couple of times by a male doctor that I felt wasn't too bright. He said it looked like the preliminary signs of herpes, but her wasn't 100% sure. I was in such shock that I no questions for him. I kept thinking back to past partners and who it could be. I didn't get it. I was so confused because every time I had sex it was protected, and I knew that cold sores on a person's face could give herpes to me so, I would never let that happen. Since the doc wasn't completely sure, I figured he had misdiagnosed me. I was clinging on to that one thread of hope. Out of no where I remembered that with my last boyfriend the condom broke. At that moment I saw my life flash before my eyes. I knew the diagnosis was correct. I thought, this is it...I'm never going to get married or raise a ! family. What was I going to say to my current boyfriend? How would he take it? Even worse, how was my mom going to take it? 

My best friend that came with me was great. She held my hand when the nurses were drawing blood from me, she was there waiting for me after I had my x-rays, she brought me water, and told me that no matter what she would be there for me. I got some medicine for the herpes, and for the pain. Neither of which is think is working, but we'll see after a few days. 

Telling: God, telling my boyfriend was gonna be hard. I was so ashamed and disappointed in myself. After I got out of the ER, I drove to his house. When he got in the car he knew that what I was going to tell him would change things for us forever. I drove us to a near by parking lot. I knew I couldn't tell him while driving around because I'd be too emotional to keep control of the car. When we got there, I turned to him and just blurted it out, fearing the worst. He took it so well. He hugged me and said that this will only make us stronger. He made me feel so good even though I was still in pain. I also told my mom...but I waited until December 4, 2000, day after I was diagnosed. I called her at work. When she got on the phone and heard my voice she knew something was wrong. She immediately came home and I told her. I thought she would be! so disappointed in me. I thought she was gonna think I was dirty. She just put her arms around me and said that a lot of people have it, and it's ok. She said that she was sorry I had it, but that it will make a me a stronger person. I am so lucky to have people around me that love me so much and are supporting me through this. 

This is all new to me and I'm very scared. I'm still very emotional, and probably will be for a while. It's such a painful ordeal, and I hope that if I get any future out breaks that they aren't as painful. I still can't pee without crying...but hopefully I will be able to in a couple of days.