“Dear Potential Life Partner, After I graduated college, back in 1996, I would go down to Man…”

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Dear Potential Life Partner, After I graduated college, back in 1996, I would go down to Manhattan twice a month by taking the train from the suburbs. I would go to a gay bar. I was somewhat depressed at the time being that I just finished college, and I didn't know what my place in the world would be. When I went to the gay bar, I would very rarely stay the night and sleep with someone because I'm attracted to very few gay men. Several nights, though, beer goggles would take over and I'd go back to a man's apartment to be intimate with them. One of these times involved a middle-aged man who seemed nice enough in the bar. After the beer-goggle effect kicked in, I ended up going back to his tiny Manhattan apartment. In bed he wanted to do things that I didn't want to do. He was a jerk about it and got angry with me. This incident made me much more choosy about whom to take home with me in the future. Soon after this incident, I noticed that I had red marks in areas of my body where I shouldn't, and I realized that this man probably gave me herpes. I've never told anyone this because, after that first breakout, I never exhibited any other signs of the virus. No other man has ever contracted it from me. Nonetheless, I wanted to let you know of my status in this regard. Part of me is ashamed and frustrated, but I know that this virus is very common. Still, you should know the truth so everything is out in the open. Your (Hopefully) Future Spouse

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