Hello grumpy80 and welcome to our site.
The emotional aspects of an HPV diagnosis, for many, are much harder than any medical issues that arise. It's understandable and unfortunate. HPV is very common, with research indicating that the vast, vast majority of sexually active people contract HPV at some point in their lives. The reason you don't hear more about it is that for most of those with the virus, it's "silent" and clears without them ever being aware. Having HPV is in no way a reflection on someone's character or lifestyle. Increasingly, being exposed to HPV is part of being a normal sexually active adult.
"High risk" HPV types are usually not the same as "low risk" types that cause genital warts. "High risk" types are so-called because of their link to cervical (and some other) cancers, but it's important to remember that cancer of any type is an uncommon outcome of "high risk" HPV infection. Cervical cancer, for example, is almost always avoided with regular Pap tests and, if needed, follow up exams and treatment. For more on this aspect, go to http://www.ashastd.org/hpv/hpv_learn_dysplasia.cfm#6
Transmission studies among couples are lacking, but it doesn't appear likely that couples sharing an HPV infection will "ping pong" the virus back and forth. Some research suggests that couples who use condoms might be able to clear both HPV and associated lesions (like cervical cell abnormalities) a bit more quickly, but more studies are needed to fully understand this. Suffice to say reinfection with your current partner probably isn't an issue, but some couples choose to use condoms regardless. Condom use has also been associated with lower rates of HPV-related diseases, like cervical cancer.
There is no HPV test approved for clinical use for males and even the one approved for females is only licensed for use in specific screening circumstances, not as a general means of checking HPV infection status.
Gardasil vaccine is recommended by CDC for use with females 11-12 years of age, and for those 13-26 who have not previously had it. Talk more with your doctor about what's appropriate for you.
Finally....take it easy on yourself. You are doing the right thing by seeking information and asking questions. Review all the HPV material on our site and if you still have unanswered questions, let us know.
Best to you,
HPV Board Moderator