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It’s time to talk about herpes dating websites and how much I hate them.
These websites enable the self-segregation of the H community in a way that I believe contributes to our invisibility and inertia. Some of these websites claim to empower their customers.
Having a minor skin condition in common is a shoddy foundation for a healthy relationship.
I’ve dated people with herpes and I’ve dated people without it.
I think most people who have had herpes for a few years know this too.
The only people who ask me about herpes dating sites have just been diagnosed and are still daunted by the idea of disclosing—a fear I encourage them to tackle instead of pursuing these trap door dating sites.
In a world where we are judged for having a sexually transmitted condition, telling a new partner about herpes means risking a rejection that plenty of herpes people would rather avoid. There is a market for these services, and I don’t want to dismiss the experiences of the people who use them. I don’t mean to knock the insecurities of people with herpes: I want to address the companies that profit off of them.
Herpes dating services have been around since the Internet was invented, thanks to a powerful social stigma that makes disclosing your STI status a frightening prospect for many of us.
You cannot say your service fights STI stigma when it relies on stigma to exist.
They say to the rest of the world that we belong apart, that we are less than, that we are a hilarious Positive Singles punch line. Maybe some people use them as a transitional tool before re-entering the wider dating sphere, and hey, cool, whatever. But they are just as often predatory environments where newly diagnosed men and women (but usually women) are bombarded with attention.
Like other dating services, they can be unsafe spaces for women where harassment and coercion thrive.
You may now see our list and photos of women who are in your area and meet your preferences.
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