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Lack of appetite, HIV related?
Oct 21, 2007

I met a man two months ago who just seemed to be so awesome (I'm a gay man by the way.)

We've been dating and hanging out every now and then, basically any chance we got.

It wasn't until about a week ago that he told me he has HIV. I of course was sad and scared for him, because this is the first person I know with HIV.

I'm also scared for myself, as we did have open mouth kissing and he went down on me a few times. I didn't orgasm and I never went down on him, however I have read the risk of getting HIV is low when kissing and receiving oral sex is involved.

I got tested last week via a rapid test, and the results were negative. My test was done 2 months after knowing him, although I'm sure in the time frame I had my test done, it's probably not a significant amount of time to get a real result back.

The thing that upsets me, is that he KNEW he had HIV and didn't say anything to me prior. After he told me he said he felt bad that he didn't mention anything to me earlier. HA, yeah right. There's nothing but anger inside of me right now for him putting me at risk like that. He ask that I forgive him but I didn't give him a direct answer.

Another problem I'm having is that for the past two weeks I've been having a problem with my digestive system. I had taco bell two weeks ago, which included a taco and burrito. Shortly after eating the burrito, I became uninterested in food and couldn't eat another bite. That same day my stomach felt full and bloated, and I felt stomach cramps at first. I had laid down to rest but after I woke up, I felt nauseous and sick.

The next day I didn't eat a thing. The smell of food made me sick to my stomach, and I came close to vomiting but never happened. All I had was 7up which made me feel much better. I made some soup which was good. The next day I was feeling better but still no appetite. Even with no appetite I did some light eating and I felt fine.

Now, it's been two weeks since this incident and I still have the same problem. The problem for me is, anything I eat I become full and bloated, and my appetite will be gone the rest of the day. I know my appetite is there, there's just something that's blocking it because I can feel it trying to push through. I have no stomach cramps, diarrhea, vomiting, nauseous feeling or anything similar. The only time I have bowel movements is when I eat, other than that I don't really have them, which I guess would seem normal if I'm not eating. I believe there's something wrong inside my stomach, and gastroparesis seems to fit what I have without the feeling sick part. I really hope thats not it.

I went to the doctor yesterday to see what was wrong, but all they did was give me a prescription for Prilosec which I don't believe will help. I had some blood work done so I'm waiting on the results.

What do you think I should do? Should I forgive this guy, and do you think it's possible I could have come in contact with HIV, even though the test shows negative??

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

Disclosure is never easy. And while I encourage everyone to disclose their HIV status sooner rather than later, I'm sure you can appreciate just how difficult having "the discussion" really is. Poz folks often worry that discussing their status soon after meeting someone often ends any chance of the other person getting to really know them. Of course the longer someone waits the greater the risk of rejection due to trust issues. I'm not defending your "awesome guy's" behavior. I'm just trying to shed some light on the issue.

So, did he put you at risk for HIV with open-mouth kissing and "going down" on you? Well, the HIV transmission risk from the activities you describe would be considered negligible at best.

Your digestive system complaints are not suggestive of or worrisome for HIV ARS (acute retroviral syndrome). Chances are they are related to your anxiety and anger over this entire issue. Although one always wonders about the consequences of fine dining at Chez Taco Bell . . . .

Should you forgive Mr. Awesome Guy and believe he is being sincere when he says he's sorry and feels bad about not disclosing sooner? That's a decision only you can make. However, I should point out that Awesome Guys don't come along all that often. And wouldn't it be tragic if you let Mr. Right get away for all the wrong reasons? I'm sure glad my Happily-Ever-After Guy didn't head for the hills when he found out I was "virally enhanced." Check out the information in the archives under the section on magnetic couples. I think you'll find it enlightening.

Good luck.

Dr. Bob



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