I had my first date with a lady the other night and she told me she has genital herpes (no, we didn’t have sex). Although she’s very nice, I'm hesitant about seeing her again. What are the chances of me catching it from her and are there any precautions

For a start, there’s a good chance you’re already carrying the virus! 1 in 8 people do, and 80% of them don’t even know it because they have no symptoms or the symptoms are so mild that they mistake it for something else, such as jock itch.

Genital herpes doesn’t have to be a big deal. After the initial episode it can be very mild to non-existent. It can be managed by life-style, particularly keeping stress levels low. For those with recurring symptoms there are anti-viral medications to manage the outbreaks.

Carriers can generally tell when they’re going to have an outbreak, as they get an itchy, tingling feeling. The virus starts shedding then, so wear condoms. Whether you wear condoms at other times is up to you, as it’s possible to shed the virus when there are no symptoms.

But all that aside, it seems to me that this lady is honest, and in terms of a relationship, that’s a much more important quality than whether she carries a virus or not! Keep up the open communication and you’ll manage this issue just fine.