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Whats with the stigma?
Jan 6, 2011

Ive noticed alot of stigma attatched to being HIV pos, I had an OI which almost killed me in 04 but I bounced back only to go on ssdi because of anxiety issues. Ive noticed now when I try and open any doors they all seem closed, its almost like you are a leper in others eyes. Im pissed off at the world, people in general and have no compassion towards others anymore. I therapist and doctors for all of this but I had a promising career and now Im left with padding around my house, this is very real and Im not BSing, I have tried numerous attemps to go back to school, to become active in the community by volunteering but it seems that all dorrs close to me. Angry at all of it still. PS I dont get much help from therapist who talk to me as a cld and all the bla bla bla, I was a skilled electrician for 20 years before all of this and when some 23 yr old intern tries to tell me about life I feel like spitting on her. What fun this dsease is once u get an OI which by the way was misdiagnosed which is why it got so bad. No recourse against doctors or anything...I feel someone should pay for their mistakes.. D

Response from Dr. Fawcett

Stigma remains an enormous reality for anyone living with HIV/AIDS. Many people experience multiple layers of stigma, including physical illness, disability, mood problems, financial concerns, etc. I commend your attempts to recreate your life by going back to school and volunteering, and I encourage you to be persistent. There are many people just like you who can become a powerful example and help break stigma. I also recommend that you find a counselor or support group of peers where you are comfortable and can express (and get rid of!) your anger. It's not healthy for you to carry that around.



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