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Suppressed Depression and Living with HIV
Nov 26, 2013

Nearly 8 years ago to the day, I was diagnosed HIV+. I was a 19-year-old scholarship undergraduate who had a successful life ahead of me.

Despite completing me degree, obtaining a Masters, meeting the love of my life and building a life together,I find myself unable to visualize my future. It is as if the diagnosis eradicated both my ability to celebrate success and to imagine a life much further ahead than the present.

Is this normal? Do I need therapy? Will I regain this ability?

Thank you for your time.

Response from Dr. Fawcett

Thanks for writing. It is not unusual for someone diagnosed with HIV to have a sense of a foreshortened future. This was especially true years ago when such a diagnosis was a death sentence that carried a great deal of certainty.

This is not the case now, nor was it 8 years ago. I would recommend speaking with a psychotherapist who could assist you in working through your fears and, no doubt, discovering and expressing other feelings that may be affecting your beliefs and thoughts. I would also recommend engaging with other people living with HIV through a support group or other activity. They could share their experiences as well as their hope with you.

You have accomplished great things there is no reason why this won't continue.

Take care,

David



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