A post for the good doctor and WW's!tor!
May 24, 2004
Dear Dr. Bob, I am a college graduate (2 years out) who frequently checks this site to update myself on new advances in HIV research and other topics concerning HIV. I find this site to be the most reliable and informative, especially with all the various misinformed sites out there. Your injection of humor and optimism is what mainly keeps me returning here however. I have had a number of encounters throughout my years in college, some unprotected, others not. While I am not proud of these mistakes....I do realize life is too short to worry yourself sick about the possible scenarios that could accompany the risk. I think one of the keys to controlling and eventually eradicating this disease is, as has been said a billion times, education. I understand people's anxiety and ways of thinking concerning infection and "am I the 1 in 1 trillion that got HIV from a drop of saliva falling out of the sky into my eye", I used to be one of those. I since am happy that I have educated myself through this site to know that HIV is relatively hard to catch, and that even with a KNOWN high risk exposure, the right factors still have to be in place for infection to occur. No one is perfect in life, and mistakes happen. The key is how you deal with them after the fact. Worrying will get you no where, and I think some people just can't come to grips with the realization that they MAY, key word MAY, be infected. I think if people understood the transmission of HIV a bit better, they would know that while they may well have had a high risk encounter......does that mean they are HIV positive? Probably not. Let me leave everyone with one final thought. In the end, we are all going to pass on of something. Old age, cancer, HIV, stroke........the possibilities are endless. Depending on your age, we all only have a few short decades left, then it's all over. Are you going to spend that precious time letting HIV worry cripple time that could be spent smiling, spending time with loved ones, and having a successful fulfilling life? I hope not. Even if you were HIV positive....is it the end of the world? No. Spend your time living life, HIV positive or not, and have a blast with the precious time we all have been given here! Get tested, and get it over with.....stand up and say, today is the day I take responsibility and get this over with once and for all. Either way it turns out, you are going to look back and realize what a good decision it was. Now I'm going to go have some fun and live my life like there is no tommorow....are you going to sit there and feel sorry for yourself? Or join me! Thanks doctor....you are a god send for thousands!
Response from Dr. Frascino
Thanks for writing! Your college degree is well deserved, as I feel you have learned many of life's crucial lessons. First off, the realization that life, love, and sex are all rather unscheduled events. They are also remarkable gifts that are transient. How we choose to enjoy, ignore, or agonize over these gifts is entirely up to each and every one of us.
I agree totally with your comments, your call to action for additional HIV/AIDS awareness/education, and your zest for life!
"L'chai-im!" ("To Life")
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