#27 Sex with Herpes: Diagnosis to Disclosure (with Courtney Brame)

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On episode 27 of the Men, Sex & Pleasure podcast, I chat with Courtney Brame, the Founder and podcast host of Something Positive for Positive People. As a podcast, this serves as a hub of interviews with people living with genital herpes along with his own experiences navigating stigma from diagnosis to disclosure. As a nonprofit, SPFPP raises money to pay for people who are struggling with HSV stigma to receive therapy. After his own diagnosis in 2012, Courtney navigated the world identifying heavily with his diagnosis unconsciously as you’ll hear more about in this episode. After finding community, all of his problems with dating and disclosure appeared to disappear. However, this made space for underlying concerns herpes had exposed. 1 was how many people despite having community and a space for finding love regardless of their HSV status wanting to end their lives. 2 was how true to himself he was able to be with these complete strangers who had one thing in common (knowing about his HSV status) versus how hidden he was with people who’d known him most of his life who did not know about his herpes status. We talk about living with herpes, from contracting the virus and receiving a diagnosis, to managing it, how it affects your masculinity and ultimately discussing it with and disclosing it to a partner.

Key Points:
– Courtney’s experience receiving a diagnosis of HSV
– Grappling with a diagnosis
– Outbreaks and managing the virus
– Masculinity and sexual confidence
– Changing beliefs and combating stigma
– Something Positive for Positive People podcast
– Communication, intimacy and sexuality
– STI/STD testing
– Sexual health and ethnicity

Relevant Links:
Courtney’s Instagram: @Honmychest
Courtney’s Facebook Page: Something Positive for Positive People

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