Gel Reduces Herpes Transmission Rate, Focuses On Reducing Stigma-Related Online Dating Issues For People Living With HSV and HPV

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A recent clinical study showed reduced genital herpes transmission rates. That's promising news for people with herpes trying to date in the mainstream, but that product alone does not reduce or remove obstacles for people dating with herpes. Niche dating sites like are still popular because they are designed for people with herpes and HPV (the human papilloma virus).

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The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.

An HIV study was completed in Africa recently which incidentally showed remarkable progress in reducing genital herpes transmission rates. The Microbicide Gel Study showed over a 50% reduction in transmission for people with Herpes.

Despite progress in treatment or preventing transmission, genital herpes can be a major limiting factor for people who wish to date online. Mainstream dating sites such as and are intended to help people who are looking for a personal connection on the Internet. However, niche sites provide a more organic connection for people with specific issues or conditions. For example, JDate is a dating site for people of the Jewish faith, a place where they start out with that in common. In the same way, niche sites like are designed for people with herpes and HPV (the human papilloma virus).

Niche sites work because of personal and societal factors. The largest Herpes and HPV dating site, Meet People with Herpes/HPV (, has been on the Internet since 1997, and has provided dating and social services to the online herpes and HPV (human papilloma virus) community during that time. Even better, people with herpes can buy "lifetime" memberships to

Even in a challenging economic and Internet environment, MPwH continues to be successful for a number of reasons:

First, people with herpes and/or HPV often isolate themselves from the mainstream dating community. MPwH provides an inclusive, informative, and supportive environment, whether the people joining are newly diagnosed, have had herpes or HPV for a while, or think of their STD as little more than a skin condition. By joining and participating within the MPwH community, members can communicate with people "just like them," who understand the emotions, fears and challenges that a herpes and HPV diagnosis can cause. On MPwH, members communicate one-to-one, in group chat, or on MPwH's Message Boards. The MPwH Message Boards are very active, with over 3 million posts since 2002; one of the highlights of the MPwH experience is the Message Board, which is available to upgraded members.

Second, people with herpes and HPV join MPwH because they consider dating "in the club" a more responsible choice. Herpes is usually not a dangerous STD, and the more serious health consequences of HPV can usually be treated with appropriate medical attention, but many people prefer not to take the chance that they'll pass a virus to a non-infected partner, even when the partner is told up front about the chance for infection and potential health issues. At MPwH, there's no need to have "the talk," the often emotionally painful discussion with a potential partner in which someone discloses a herpes or HPV infection.

Third, people join MPwH because it's designed to be private, and they don't have to take the chance that they'll inadvertently disclose their condition. There's a stigma attached to herpes and HPV that causes embarrassment and social problems for many people, and at MPwH, people don't have to worry about being "different" or inferior in any way. MPwH levels the playing field and makes a diagnosis of Herpes or HPV a non-issue in relation to meeting friends or dating.

It's nice to find a place without judgments. Maya Angelou once said "The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.” At niche sites like MPwH, everyone can be just as they are.

Dating within a niche site doesn't make someone better, smarter, or funnier. The niche itself isn't a compatibility factor; it's a qualifying or disqualifying factor. Herpes or HPV won't make you cuter or younger, but dating where it's not a factor will help to remove a potential obstacle. For many people, removing potential stumbling blocks can be a big benefit. Non-judgmental interactions with a lot of people in the same situation makes the choice of a niche site a very wise decision.

Anybody living with Herpes or HPV can find support, friendship, medical information, and dating opportunities by joining MPwH (Meet People with Herpes/HPV) the internet's oldest and most trusted Herpes and HPV social community found at MPwH.


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