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HIV Transmission and Education >> Am I Infected?

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Anonymous
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Anxiety, Doubts, 7 Month Negative, Guilt, Crazy?
      #28767 - 02/25/02 12:56 AM

Back in the year 2000 I had an encounter that most would label low risk to almost nonexistant risk. However, I started to panic after I developed symptoms the next 2 weeks. I developed slight night sweats for one. A week after the incident I woke up sweating at night with a headache, what I figured to be a fever, since I felt like I was burning. I had diahrea that night too, but the diahrea only occured that one night. I developed a sore throat that last from 2-3 weeks, it was a rather dry sore throat, but not that aching. I had a fever for about 4 or so days, this was in the fall. I soon developed what I beleievd to be a rash on my trunk, It was itchy and my clothing irritated it. I lost my appetite and barely ate. I must've lost like 20 lbs in the next 2 months or so. This was around Christmas time of 2000. I didn't sleep for 5 nights straight the week after my symptoms. I saw a counselor and many of my symptoms disappeared, including the night sweats and I regained some appetite. I took a test at 53 days and it was negative. However, I fretted for the next few months and HIV fears controlled my life. I would not sleep at night and sleep during the day a little bit. I was in college at the time, and my grades suffered, though I managed to make grades above a C, I was a straight A student before. I became a basketcase and isolated myself from the world. When summer came, and I was not in school, I got HIV tested. In those 7 months, I learned coping mechanisms to get my mind of off HIV and I began preparing myself for the worse. How would I live my life if the worst happened? How would I ever date, since I was only in my early 20s I had my whole life ahead of me. At the seventh month mark, during the summer, I was tested for HIV-1 via EIA (Elisa) and tested nonreactive or negative. That came as a relief. But soon doubts came into my head like what if I was coinfected with HEP C or somethign and that caused a false neg. Or what if my poor health from the prior 7 months, the lack of sleep, the stress, and the bad eating habits had affected my immune system and caused low antibody production? What if I had been exposed to so little of the virus that antibody production came very late? I managed to cast those doubts from my head for the most part. I began living my life again. I began making new friends, concentrating on school, and enjoying life. I also became interested in dating (I haven't dated anybody since, but I am looking). I don't think going back for another HIV test is necesary at this point, since guys like Ryan Kull and the CDC state that after 6 months, even 3 months, the test is conclusive. I don't think I have HEP C, if I did, I wouldn't want to know, life is so enjoyable right now. I just need some assurance from you all that I am okay and fine and don't need to worry about HIV and that I should put my guilt behind me. Please convince me that I am delusional when I think that the lab lied or did not test my blood. Please tell me that my symptoms, including the fevers and the night sweats and the rash, were not related to HIV. And please encourage me to get on with my life, which I have been trying to do and have succeeded at it half way. I managed to graduate from college with a 3.5 GPA despite all my troubles. I made a lot of new friends in the 8 months since testing negative. I am going to start going to therapy for my obsessive thoughts. Do you all think that I can date someone right now and not tell them about my HIV scare, that is one reason why I have avoided dating, I wouldn't want to have them worry or think I was crazy (which I probably am half crazy)? Well, thanks for your support and I hope my symptoms weren't anything. Most experts (someone wrote a letter to Kull with a similar incident and he stated that the risk was low to nonexistant risk) agree that I am fine.

Thank You for your patience



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Jackie_Blue
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Reged: 10/26/00
Posts: 2028
Re: Anxiety, Doubts, 7 Month Negative, Guilt, Crazy? new
      #28775 - 02/25/02 06:02 AM

You said yourself you had a low/nonexistent risk. You have tested negative outside the window period.

YES, move on with your life. Enjoy! You should be enjoying this time of your life.

Date the girls. No, you don't have to tell them about your HIV scare. You don't have HIV, so it's none of their business. Don't forget what condoms are for. I've heard of some guys that always keep a couple condoms in their wallet so that they are always prepared in case they get 'lucky'

However, I would suggest that you just 'date' the girls until you have some time under your belt with your counselor. If you don't deal with the issues that brought you here in the first place over a non-exposure, then you will be back here again scared for no reason.

Enjoy your future.



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Anonymous
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Re: Anxiety, Doubts, 7 Month Negative, Guilt, Crazy? new
      #28945 - 02/27/02 02:20 AM

don't believe that 3-6 month stuff!!!

YOU Know if you have it!!!

Stop Denying!!!



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