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Can the mind really do this?
Jul 25, 2002

Let me start off by saying that even though I do not know you personally you have touched me in many ways. I read your answers to everyones questions with eager anticipation. The past 3 months have made me have a completely different outlook on life. I am not proud of what I did and I feel that i have learned a very tough lesson. Let me tell you my story. April 18th is a night that I will never forget. I work for an airline and i was overnighting in philadelphia with my crew. Myself and another f/a went downstairs for a few drinks....... well a few turned into alot and we ended up having the most drunken one night stand that i can ever recall. Exactly 2 weeks later i started to get what I felt was a low grade fever coming and going. i went to the doctor on 5-20 which was 28 days after sex. I knew and she told me that it was too early to test for hiv but i had it done anyway. it came back negative. i also had a cbc done and it was normal 6.0 wbc 19-lymphcytes and 9-momcytes. During the next couple of weeks i started to experince anxiety and one night I had a terrible panic attack and confessed to my fiance what I had done. I was so scared. She has been so good to me for 7 years. I continued to experince what i thought were symptoms... aches and pains, diarrhea, fatigued. My doctor put me on xanax to help calm me down. I worried daily and could not function at all. I have been on this site over a hundred times. On june 21st 63 days another negative hiv test. On july 11th i had cbc work done again as I was still feeling the same symptoms. This was scary my wbc dropped to 2.7, my monocytes jumped to 20 and my lymphocytes went to 38. i went nuts, how in the hell could it my blood work have changed so much from last month? My doctor wanted me to be tested for epstein-barr and mono and get another cbc. So on 7-15 we did that and the mono came back negative and the epstein-barr test revealed that at sometime I have had it but they could not tell me when. My blood work had returned to normal wbc 4.1, lymphocytes-32, monocytes-14.I was going nuts waiting for the 3 month period to be over. I finaly waited until the 95th day and got another hiv test done and it came back neagtive. This has been the scariest time in my life!! to think that I could of lost everything for alousy one night stand that i hardly remember. I just find it so hard to believe that the mind can really make your body feel like it has something when it really does not. I was completely convinced that I had aqquired hiv. But after 95 days of waiting and being negative i am slowly trying to get my life back. i am seeing a therapist and my beautiful fiance has forgiven me and I am looking forward to being with her and only her forever. Thank you for letting me share this with you. god bless

Response from Dr. Frascino


It is I who must thank you for sharing your story. Yes, the mind can and often does make us feel all sorts of things - hence the phrase "worried sick!" Irrational fears are quite common. For instance, just look at all the folks petrified of something as harmless as a tiny spider. My sister-in-law can wake the whole neighborhood up screaming if she sees even the tiniest 8-legged bug on a wall across the room. Now really, is this itsy bitsy harmless creature really a threat to a full grown human being???

I'm very glad you are getting counseling for your fears, and that your fiancée was understanding. Don't be too hard on yourself. Remember, we are all only human. That means we are destined to make mistakes. Some of mine would probably curl your hair (if your hair isn't curly already). The important thing is to learn from yesterday's mistakes, live for today, and anticipate a wonderful tomorrow.

In your particular case, special circumstances apply. After all, you were stuck in Philadelphia. What else was there to do? OK Philadelphians don't write in. I'm only kidding!!!

Give your fiancée a hug from me for being understanding. I think you have a real keeper there and that she has a pretty wonderful guy, too!

Stay well.

Dr. Bob

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