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Isolated and Pathetic
Feb 26, 2002

Michael, I have been ill now 2 years since diagnosis.I'd tested neg every test prior last test in 99.I'd meet my partner in 98 and he moved across country in May 99.April 2000 both of us given an Aids diagnosis,we love each other very much.His health improved and never been ill.But my health worsened and was diagnosised with aan advanced NHL in Oct 2000.I did chemotherapy and relapsed,started again chemo in March 2001 and completed.I then relapsed again in Oct 2001 did more chemotherapy and still continue on chemotherapy,hopefully will be approved for transplant.Lately when i sleep or just sitting quitely i imagion a whole different life in my head,what if type thing.I enjoy going to sleep because in my sleep I'm well and happy.I loved life so much but now i don't enjoy living,my so called friends haven't called me in nearly two years and if they see me,I'm invisible to them.I can't express these feeling to my partner because i do love him very much and feel guilty and selfish that i fantasies about living another existence.I never see anyone and I get anxious when i go out,because i don't know how to have a conversation anymore with other people.I don't know how this happened to me and i feel like a real joke that i believed these people where my friends,you can't make people visit or call you and it still hurts to think i really didn't have friends.I can't go to support groups because my chemotherapy is very aggressive and i have hardly any WBC so i could get sick.2 years been so ill is to long it really is .Thank you Michael.Stay safe and well.

Response from Mr. Shernoff

You certainly can benefit from a support group. Most AIDS organizations understand how to help people in your situation and usually have arrangements to do the initial interviews at your home and then have you phone in to the support group and participate through a conference call. Try to explore this option. It is crucical that you do everything to help deal with the terrible isolation you are living with. It is also probably a good idea that you begin to share more of your feelings with your partner and see how he reacts. It also sounds like you are understandably depresed and could benefit from antidepressant medication. Please ask one of your doctors to refer you to a psychiatrist so you can get the correct medication to help relieve the worst of your depression.

This is a very challenging and painful time in your life. So please follow these suggestions to see if they help.

MIchael SHernoff, MSW



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