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HIV Education but nobody knows his status!

Oct 15, 2006

My best friend told me a few months ago that his is HIV+. I love him dearly and the news only strengthened our bond and made me more loyal to him. The problem lies with his attitude. I do whatever I can to help him and be there for him and most of the time he is the most wonderful person, but sometimes it seems he is in such deep denial. The worst part is he is an HIV educator but no one knows his status except me. He is so afraid of the HIV stigma. He is constantly telling me about the stages of denial/acceptance and saying he has accepted his situation but I know that is not true. Especially after doctor visits, he will become angry. After his last appointment he actally called all his other friends and basically told them to F$#% off. One in particular he was very close to and was interested in having a romantic relationship with. This is the 3rd time I have seen him do this to people.He leaves no explanation as to why. I think he is so afraid of rejection that cutting ties is easier but I know he cant live this way. At times he has really upset me with this attitude. I am always telling him he needs support. He needs a core group of people he can count on and who know but he refused. I love him so much and try all I can to be there for him but I think regardless of anyones situation bad behavior is not acceptable and he is going down the wrong path. When I tell him this he turns it back on me and says I'm the one wtih the problem. I fear that he will regret his actions amd I just dont know what to do. How can I be there for him but help him to be there for himself as well?

Response from Dr. Horwath

I believe you are doing what you can. His behavior is not in your control. You can continue to be a supportive and understanding friend. You can point out to him what you see in his behavior. But ultimately, he needs to decide for himself who he tells and who he does not tell.

HIV+ but not on meds

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