OK, so my ex recently got in touch with me and was really worried – a guy she was dating was developing first symptoms of cold sores and he was getting upset at her for “giving her an STD”. I had my first outbreak several years ago (and I think I gave it to said ex) and, initially, I was quite traumatized – I mean, WTF, I have an STD now? So I did some research and realized it’s not a big deal and almost everyone I know has it already so it’s surprising it has taken so long for me to get infected (or perhaps I was infected all along and now I just have symptoms). But, this probably wouldn’t calm that guy down. So I got in touch with a friend of mine, Anna Kushnir, who did research on HSV at Harvard, and here is what she wrote. Anna, you are awesome.