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Family Man Again
Jan 19, 2004

Dear Bob,

Although you never answered my posts, I'm here writing again. I'm that married Brazilian, 3 daughters, that went out with a street hooker once in 10 years, to do something different or whatever. It happened a month ago and had no penetration sex, because I freaked out. Now it's 4 A.M. and I'm desperate again. Funny, huh? Well, I'm not asking anything this time. I'm just writing, well, to help me to relief my guilty and this desperate felling of insecure. You may say "no penetration, no HIV" as I read you saying before. But it doesn't help much. Im alone, Im worried, and sometimes I have this picture in my mind that I could have infected my wife and daughters. And it's pretty scary. Beyond my worst nightmares. And I still have two months before the 3 months test. It comes in cycles, this thinking and the anxiety. Sometimes it's light. Sometimes I almost can't handle. Sometimes I just want to die to not have to face my family again. You probably will think I'm an idiot. And maybe I am. But I'm having a hard time.

Thanks for your support

Family Man

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello Brazilian-guy,

No, of course I don't think you're an idiot. You've made a mistake that now you feel guilty about. That guilt is feeding your fears of HIV. Your real risk appears to be minimal to nonexistent from what I can discern from your "no penetration" comment. And without any doubt whatsoever, your fears are way out of proportion to that risk. So what should you do? First, you need help coping with your irrational fears an anxiety. For crying out loud, it's 4 a.m. and you're writing to me instead of sleeping!!! I think some professional counseling and perhaps some anti-anxiety meds could really help you over the next eight weeks while you're waiting for your HIV test results. Second, I'd suggest leveling with your wife. Yes, telling her will be difficult, and she may get madder than a samba school dance instructor with a broken cha-cha heel, but ultimately I'll bet she'll realize you are indeed sorry. We are all human. We all (yes, even me) make mistakes. Relationships are strengthened by challenges and honesty, even when that honesty is initially painful.

Good luck, Brazilian Guy. I'll be waiting for your WOO-HOO in eight short weeks! In the interim, get the support you need.

Dr. Bob



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