Wedding Woes

You have to tell him, come what may.

Dear Prudence,

My husband went into therapy to deal with some longstanding issues and rapidly became severely depressed. He stuck with therapy but refused medication. I felt alone, isolated, and helpless. Of course, our sex life vanished. He encouraged me to follow my own hobbies, as he wasn’t really up to social engagement. So I did. And in one group, I ran into “Max,” who I also work with. We ended up spending time together, and then one weekend when my husband was away on business, I slept with him. It happened again a few weeks later, again when my husband was away. I appreciated the intimacy, but I have no desire to be with Max.

Fast forward to now, a month later. Max has just told me he has herpes. I went to the doctor and got tested, and I have it too. Max is the only person I’ve ever slept with other than my husband, so I definitely got it from him. I was devastated and broke down at the doctor’s office. I felt I had to tell my husband about the STI. The doctor said I didn’t have to, as many people have it, and it is frequently symptomless, so he might never know. I don’t know what to do. Should I tell him and risk a divorce? Can I keep it to myself?


—Friends With Consequences

Re: You have to tell him, come what may.

  • Ro041Ro041
    Sixth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    WHAT KIND OF DOCTOR IS THAT?!?!  Unless the test also tests for HSV1 (the mouth one), then that seems like the shittiest advice ever.

    charlotte989875levioosaernursejMesmrEwe
  • This sucks but she has to tell him.    I get it - it sounds like a lose/lose situation.   But she's thinking that it's best to lie by omission to her husband over hear own fears?  Sorry - but I think she made some bad choices and needs to be honest about them.   
    short+sassy
  • This seems like a “not actually sorry, just sorry they got caught” scenarios.  I agree that LW should tell their husband.
    charlotte989875ShesSoColdshort+sassyMesmrEwe
  • CharmedPamCharmedPam Chicagoburbs
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    exactly.  Why is this doctor offering advise like that?!?

    She has to tell him.

  • Sounds like the perfect time to tell him not just about the herpes, but the affair, too. Maybe you can work through it, maybe you can’t; but you can’t keep medicinal information that affects someone else’s life from them. 
    short+sassy
  • Ro041Ro041
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    I cannot get over that the doctor told her she didn't have to tell just because there are those who don't have symptoms.  Who cares if husband gets it and has symptoms??  I just can't fathom that advice and I think the doctor should be out of a job.

    banana468charlotte989875
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California
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    Directly from the CDC guidelines: “Counseling of infected persons and their sex partners is critical to the management of genital herpes. The goals of counseling include helping patients cope with the infection and preventing sexual and perinatal transmission. Although initial counseling can be provided at the first visit, many patients benefit from learning about the chronic aspects of the disease after the acute illness subsides....The sex partners of persons who have genital herpes can benefit from evaluation and counseling. Symptomatic sex partners should be evaluated and treated in the same manner as patients who have genital herpes. Asymptomatic sex partners of patients who have genital herpes should be questioned concerning histories of genital lesions and offered type-specific serologic testing for HSV infection.”

    This doctor is a fucking prick, wrong, and potentially is single handedly contributing to the spread of STDs in his community. He deserves to be reported. I see soooo many STDs in the clinic. Like a disturbing amount. I would say roughly 25% of them are women who come in after their partner has been away on a trip, and then they develop new symptoms that they secretly know isn’t just a yeast infection. Obviously that’s anecdotal and in no way a curated statistic, but it does happen quite frequently. Literally, gonorrhea and chlamydia are such huge health concerns that the CDC approves and advocates the use of expedited partner therapy where you write a prescription for the patient’s partner even if you never see them in person. 

    You have an affair? You’re a shitty person, and telling your SO can be a grey area. You have an affair and contract an STI? You have no choice but to tell them. You don’t get to fuck around with someone else’s health. 


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    banana468ernursej
  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya
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    eileenrob said:
    This seems like a “not actually sorry, just sorry they got caught” scenarios.  I agree that LW should tell their husband.
    This. Aside from the completely appalling doctor thing, LW doesn't care that she cheated on her husband (and she's sort of pushing some blame on him for his depression which is even worse), she only cares that she got an STD (um, karma?).

    This poor guy. He's clinically depressed from trying to better himself and his wife goes out and gets herself the herp and is considering not even telling him because he may never have symptoms? Seriously LW is a total asshole.
    Image result for someecard betting someone half your shit youll love them forever
    levioosashort+sassyeileenrobcharlotte989875
  • levioosa said:
    Directly from the CDC guidelines: “Counseling of infected persons and their sex partners is critical to the management of genital herpes. The goals of counseling include helping patients cope with the infection and preventing sexual and perinatal transmission. Although initial counseling can be provided at the first visit, many patients benefit from learning about the chronic aspects of the disease after the acute illness subsides....The sex partners of persons who have genital herpes can benefit from evaluation and counseling. Symptomatic sex partners should be evaluated and treated in the same manner as patients who have genital herpes. Asymptomatic sex partners of patients who have genital herpes should be questioned concerning histories of genital lesions and offered type-specific serologic testing for HSV infection.”

    This doctor is a fucking prick, wrong, and potentially is single handedly contributing to the spread of STDs in his community. He deserves to be reported. I see soooo many STDs in the clinic. Like a disturbing amount. I would say roughly 25% of them are women who come in after their partner has been away on a trip, and then they develop new symptoms that they secretly know isn’t just a yeast infection. Obviously that’s anecdotal and in no way a curated statistic, but it does happen quite frequently. Literally, gonorrhea and chlamydia are such huge health concerns that the CDC approves and advocates the use of expedited partner therapy where you write a prescription for the patient’s partner even if you never see them in person. 

    You have an affair? You’re a shitty person, and telling your SO can be a grey area. You have an affair and contract an STI? You have no choice but to tell them. You don’t get to fuck around with someone else’s health. 
    This is why I'm never a fan of covering an affair.  You could have an STI and not know it.   I get that it's not great to get involved but I'd tell a friend and ruin a relationship rather than have someone walking around to find out that he has an STI because "I just didn't think it was my business to speak up." 
  • short+sassyshort+sassy
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
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    edited October 11

    Considering not telling her H about the STD is the obviously super sh***y thing.

    But it really, really grinds my gears when people make "this is why it's not really my fault" excuse, for their own bad behavior:  I know I shouldn't have had an affair.  But my H drove me to it.

    I realize marital problems can be a factor in an affair.  But let's not shift blame, LW.

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    MesmrEwe
  • Yea - LW is a shi**y person for even thinking of not telling HH, without the rest.  HH deserves the chance to fully start over with a new life if he chooses!  (How much of the depression have to do with things in the marriage js)..  She made her choice on more than one occasion, he deserves to be informed!
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    short+sassy
  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK
    2500 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
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    First, do no harm... unless you are trying to cover for a patient's extramarital affair.

    That doctor should be struck-off and never allowed to practice again. 
    charlotte989875eileenrobMesmrEwe
  • I feel like the doctor has had an affair and wants to justify hiding it by telling all his patients who had affairs to do the same ...
    imageimage
    eileenrobMesmrEwemaine7mob
  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its
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    Just my regular reminder that not all people that have affairs/cheat are terrible, shitty people. Sometimes they just make bad choices. 

    Now, intentionally not telling someone about at STD? That does make you a shitty person. 
    I agree 100% (and as someone who cheated once).

    But if you cheat on your SPOUSE, hide it, try to blame him for it and only care that you got yourself the herp and may have given it to him, then you're a shitty person. 
    Image result for someecard betting someone half your shit youll love them forever
    charlotte989875short+sassymrsconn23
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