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Lonely and Frightened in Japan
Aug 25, 1999

Dear Father, I am a catholic from Boston, Mass currently living in Japan. My new friend has just told me he is HIV positive and although we've only kissed since we've met, I'm terribly frightened for him and for myself. I can't sleep at night, have horrific nightmares and have myself begun to lose weight. I have no one to talk toand am exceedingly lonely.But how can I not hurt him? How can I keep him from losing hope if I turn and run. I can't even tell him I don't want to kiss anymore. It's really too much for me. I pray often and ask that you pray for him and myself as well.Yours in faith,John

Response from Father DeMartini

Dear John, Thank you for your letter and your honesty. I can sense your fear both regarding the virus as well as the possibility of losing or hurting someone you care for deeply. I think that in any caring relationship it is important to practice honesty. So I think it would be better for your friend to hear you voice your fears rather than to sense your uncomfortableness or distance and not understand why. I also think that your friend is also afraid and perhaps sharing your fears with each other would also be a way of deepening your care and commitment to each other. If you both want to continue your friendship together you will help each other find a way to deal with your differences, including the difference in your HIV status. I pray that you both will find the way to this future. You are both in my prayers. Blessings, Fr. Rod



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