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HIV Life >> Gay Men

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Reged: 06/02/09
Posts: 2
Up Date 3yrs on ''23 and just got tested''
      #245940 - 06/02/09 08:55 PM

Hi everyone,
Not sure what made me come back or decide to do this, guess an update - at a low point again - help again!

When I was first diagnosed over 3yrs ago I was at a low point in my life and was not sure what to do or what was going to happen or had any one to talk to! I was so over whelmed by the reply’s I got and to find people out there in the same situation that I have decided to come back for more help guidance etc...

Original post
‘23 and just got tested + not sure what life has’

“Hey, I am 23 and just found out i have HIV and sure to start treament soon(cd4 197 -VL19.000). I keep asking my self and god, why start, what can life have to offer me now with this virus, I have so many desisions to make i just cant decide what is the right one, also being at uni and the start of adulthood what is the point!. I have kept this secret to myself and not sure who to trust with this problem and who to put it on (which is eating me up and on my mind every second of the day),,, not sure if best not to start treament and letting life go, will i ever beable to be truthful to the people i love (family-friends) telling people i was gay was bad enough now hiv! dont think i can cope living with what are ment to be the best years of my life with this dark cloud over me.....and how will i ever meet some one i can love and love me bak now!!!!! feel like running away! but where to? hate feeling sorry for my self but how do i get my self out of it...
Any Helpful Words or some direction......Thanks”

LINK / /

Anyway, how has life actually changed? Well I can say I have managed to get through the last 3yrs, decided to get on meds and start to fight the virus, I have an undetectable viral load and cd4 at current 480! I finished university and have started my own women’s clothing label with my sister, which is the hardest work I have yet to do, I could say harder than living with HIV at times and of course at this time and in the current financial climate is being effected and may have some effect to how am feeling.

Enough about the history! Where am I now? Still living alone with this virus – still not built the courage to tell family or friends and still feel such alone in the world (why haven’t I told family and friends you may be asking? scared /ashamed / feel silly for what I have let happen, not sure y because after all I know they would be there for me – but then don’t want to put this on them I guess and as before) Still feel like I have wasted my life and have not much to look forward to! Still I feel like running away and cutting all ties with anyone, I sometimes get envious of my friends who are moving on with their lives, meeting people moving, going travelling - which I feel I have no option of now - but what will that do!

I guess also am unhappy about the doctors I see. If I bump in to old friend or people from the past I get a lot oww no how skinny have u gone how much weight have u lost – which deep down inside eats me up and has started to effect the way i am socialising i refuse to get pics of myself took due to looking like I do on them.

When I go to the doctors they say I am still around the same weight as before ‘ I have high cheek bones I should be happy’ when I try to explain that when I come /found out I was already sick and had lost so much weight, they don’t listen they refer back to the first weight took and reel of as before, I have tried to change docs and seem to get no were – they tell me the meds am on does not affect/or have them side effects (sustiva and kivexa) I explain I understand that – I did see an improvement when I first started, my energy levels and weight did seem to improve slightly but the main place is my face that never changes (the rest is coved by clothes and not like anyone is going to get to see it) and if I get sick every now and again is prone to lose weight and never able to regain! So the last time I actually attended a clinic was back in October 2008 due to getting no help with the issues I was having, so I just go to the blood clinic get my bloods took and get prescriptions of them.

Also due to no one knowing about me – the last time I was admitted to hospitable I attended with my mum and as the doc was seeing me she was in the room so I was unable to actually say and guess didn’t want to say I had HIV, and had to have an operation due to having a peri-anal abscess and now feel so bad for not saying to the doctors and feel like I could have put myself in danger and the doctors.
Also I find it hard to attend the clinics as well in case I actually bumped in to some one I knew, which scares me and with the no help I get don’t see the point, I guess all the problems above are down to my own silly fault of not getting the courage to tell people – but I just can find the right time/person/ right words or courage to say – am HIV poz 
So I guess I have managed to get through the 3yrs but still not managed to deal with the issues that were affecting me in the first place.

Feel like I am lost again, the 1st yr of treatment was really good I could see improvements and feel back to normal and did manage to block most of the above problems out – but I have started to feel like I am falling back down a slippery slope and don’t know how or where to get out or what’s ahead of me. I wish I could meet someone in the same situation but how is that going to happen if no one knows about me and not prepared to disclose it! I guess after all that rambling I still don’t know what to do or want to find out – just life’s really tough at the moment and any help or actual contact with someone else in the same situation would be really nice / even better a big hug from my mum to say every think is going to ok ..:-( I guess I should stop before I make myself more upset thanks and bye x A

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Reged: 04/06/09
Posts: 38
Re: Up Date 3yrs on ''23 and just got tested'' new
      #245950 - 06/03/09 06:35 PM

Hey Austin,

You`ve already showed great strength and courage! at 23 , i can only imagine how difficult it must have been to assume all that alone! i`m in Paris so not far away, i`d be happy to to communicate with you and give some support if i can!

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Reged: 12/06/08
Posts: 130
Loc: NY, NY
Re: Up Date 3yrs on ''23 and just got tested'' new
      #245976 - 06/07/09 04:13 PM

hey bud...have you thought about eercising? do you eat well? avoid alcohol? Do you stick to your meds?

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Reged: 07/28/09
Posts: 1
Re: Up Date 3yrs on ''23 and just got tested'' new
      #246746 - 07/28/09 11:48 PM


I hope you don't mind me writing you. My son is 23 and was recently diagnosed. As a person your message made my heart go out to you; as a mother your message tugged on my heart. I'm sure your relationship with your family and your reasoning goes well beyond what was written. Whatever your reasons know that as a mother no matter what our children do (at least aside from something horrible like murder) we love them unconditionally. We may get angry, disappointed, hurt, and every other emotion, but you're our children and we love our children.

I had no pity for my son when he told me; I knew he was wild and liked to party and I told him the way he played it was inevitable. I told him we'd get through it as a family and we would be there no matter what he needed, but there would be no pity. I did not cry (at least not in front of him), and I didn't feel sorry for him or coddle him. I told him he needed to face this with the strength and courage he faced everything else with. I reminded him of all his achievements and the things he'd already overcome. Although nothing in comparison, the point was that he could do it, he just had to want to.

Over the past few months we (as a family) have been facing everything together and discussing each aspect, options, pros cons etc. We even had our first cry together recently, but it wasn't out of pity, it was out of love.

Whether your family is there for you or not, and right now you're not even giving them an option, you should love yourself enough to love and value your life, no matter how horrible, no matter how sick. I'm sure you have many beautiful and wonderful attributes you should be proud of and celebrate. Graduating college is one, striving at your own business is another (that takes courage, strength...physical and mental..., savvy, and so many other qualities most people don't have the nerve to even call upon).

Facing this alone shows a stubborn quality, as well as independence and inner strength. I'm proud of you for doing it alone as long as you have without giving up. Now that said, that doesn't mean I think you should continue to do so. People need people, it's a fact. It can be emotional, physical, both, or something else, but we need each other; we're not meant for solitude.

So if you truly don't feel like you can share with your blood family find people who you do think you can share with. No one said our blood family can be the only ones there for us...sometimes our blood families are the last ones there for us...but again, you should at least give them opportunity.

If you'd rather not face the possibility of rejection or ridicule, then so be it. Relish in the love and relationship you do have with them and understand and accept your rationale for not letting them in. Honesty, humility, and strength will be your best bet. Even if they behave poorly at first, if you stand tall and don't back away or let them push you away, then hopefully they'll come around. Sometimes our initial reactions are overreactions and we need time to adjust, but you can help them (and others) see past it all if you stay the course. In other words, don't make excuses, simply tell them, and let them know you love them and no matter what you're still their son and you still love and need them. Sometimes parents need to be reminded that their children still need them. Remind them too that all mistakes in life shouldn't be punished beyond the punishment you're already receiving. Let them know you're not looking for pity, but rather love and a family to help you through this as they did everything else.

There was a story on here about a mother who was a reverend and she didn't find out about her son until he was dying; she asked him why he didn't tell her and he said that although he knew his mother would still love him and accept him, he wasn't sure if the reverend would. She now has to live with that guilt for the rest of her life. She said she hates knowing that her son went through it all alone and that although she may not have been to keen on it at first, her love for him as her son would have prevailed. She now is an activist for HIV/Aids in her son's honor...she could have done that while he was alive too, and think of how much better both of their lives would have been.

My dear young man, I do hope you find the strength to confront your family and then even more strength to endure their mixed bag of emotions. But know this, regardless, you're never alone. Hundreds of thousands of young men and women are facing or have faced every battle you're facing. There's a lot of love in this world and if you reach out surely someone will send you some love...I'm sending you love as a mother, and as a person...I'm sending you hugs...and wishing you luck in your quest for peace and strength.

With every breath you take, value who you are and love is a gift, no matter how hard or how horrible it can be; it's yours and you do have choices and opportunities to live and laugh, and enjoy it. So do that; please.


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