May 28, 2003
Dear Dr. Frascino:
Intrusive personal question. As someone living with HIV after an accidental workplace exposure, do you ever find it difficult, even infuriating, to be bombarded with frantic questions from people whose exposure is highly improbable and who are then nevertheless ecstatic to learn they won't have to worry about what you deal with every day?
Response from Dr. Frascino
Intrusive personal question? No, not at all! Believe me, your question cant even begin to compare to some of the questions Ive received on this site!!!
Am I infuriated to be bombarded with frantic questions from folks with highly improbable exposures? Well, Ive never ceased to be amazed at the number of questions flowing in. Bombarded is an excellent word. There is absolutely no way I could even read, let alone respond, to all of them. No, I really dont get annoyed or infuriated. Often, I feel sorry for these folks. There lives are a wreck. Anxiety, depression, guilt, OCD, etc. are real conditions, just like HIV. And like HIV, they need treatment. Hopefully my comments help at least some of these folks to confront their irrational fears and get the help they need.
"What I deal with everyday" can indeed be challenging, but in all honesty, Im not at all sure I would want to trade places with many of the folks who write to me. I am who I am. At this time, HIV is part of my existence an unwanted intruder to be sure but also part of what makes me "me."
Thanks for your concern. A good doctor must have both patients and patience!
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