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Advice on Pursuing Relationship
Aug 31, 2005

I am a very pretty 25 year old HIV+ woman.From the time I walk out of my apartment horns honk and tires screech. I've been hit on by cops, paramedics, bus drivers and even

the husbands of my friends and family members who knows about my HIV status.

I haven't been dating for a while because my previous boyfriend contracted the virus from me although we were safe and used condoms. Unfortunately it happened. I was devasted and vowed to live like a hermit from now on. We still speak to each other but I don't want a relationship. Recently my best friends brother, who knows I'm + poured his heart out and told me he was in love with me (no he wasn't under the influence)it didn't come as a surprise because I heard his sisters mentioning it for the past several years and now that I'm not in a relationship he made his move.

This guy is a very caring and wonderful person but I could never live with myself if I infect another person, I prefer to take my own life. I am so scared, I don't know what to do. Having this guy around me seems like a blessing but on the other hand I'm having nightmares.

Should I follow my mind and keep this guy at a distance? Please help.

Response from Dr. Horwath

I don't believe that it is your responsibility to protect this man from himself. He understands your HIV status, and he is capable of deciding for himself if a relationship with you is worth the risk. By living like a "hermit," you are only depriving yourself (and maybe him) of the satisfaction of a caring and supportive relationship.

If you use appropiate precautions during sex, then you and he have done everything that you could to prevent him from becoming infected. Living in complete isolation from intimacy will only further punish you for no good reason.



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