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HIV Transmission and Education >> Am I Infected?

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go woohoo?
      #238799 - 04/27/08 02:35 AM

Hey!
After reading the posts here, it has been really reassuring. let me tell you my experience. PLEASE help me by answering me. I promise I will give back to this community with my personal experience with hiv (whichever it turns to) in the future.

Here is my story:
I was not sure if i was bi or not, I wanted to find out so i met a random guy on the internet (funny, the good and bad things about the internet: first its giving me the scare of my life and then is helping me to cope with it) and 4 weeks ago we met for 'protected oral sex' only at his place. this is the order in which things happened

1) He put the condom on and then I licked his balls once (literally) and then I performed oral sex on him once (with latex condom)
2) we deep kissed
3) he masturbated me once with his hands
*i spent about 5 mins on the bathroom washing my mouth with just water because latex tastes 'funny' lol*
after talking for a few mins

4) we performed oral sex again on each other (always with condom)
5) He performed rimming on me for a while
*i spent about 5 more mins washing my mouth with just water and he had to have mints lol*

___

I was ok after it. I returned home and I accepted the experience. I found out I didn't really liked to be with guys, but at least i was glad I took that 'curiosity' out of me in order to find myself.

Anyways 2 days later i went to the doc for a Sinus problem that was bothering me since a few weeks and she prescribed me 10 days of clarythromicyn (antibiotics) twice a day.

With time i don't know what exactly happened but anxiety started to build over and I was afraid of having caught hpv, syphilis or hepatitis B. I never even thought of HIV. and anxiety was building up quickly. I was convinced I had hepB so i would start to be aware of my liver....

Then 2weeks and 4 days after that bi experience I was convinced I had caught syphilis or something and would start checking my mouth over and inserting a mirror and a flashlight in my mouth order to see for syphilis signs (mad i know!!). I was going nuts.
At the next morning I woke up with oral thrush in the tongue and what I know now is geographic tongue. I went to google to find out what that was and I found thrush is one of the HIV symptoms... ever since my anxiety turned worst and I visited the ER room a few days later (exactly at 3 weeks from bi experience) to get it checked.
After all if I get HIV i better find out soon for my own health

Doctor saw me and since this is a very very catholic country and homohobic society I lied to her that I was worried because had vaginal sex with a random girl, with a condom, and that i was afraid she gave me something, including HIV, since my tongue was like that.
She told me I should be ok since it was with a condom, but she was kinda 'puzzled' for the tongue. After finding out I had antibiotics before she suspected it was related to stress and to antibiotics I was prescribed
She ordered hepatitisB, syphilis and HIV tests, just to be sure. I think she did that just to chill out myself.
It came all negative. But i know an elisa test at 3 weeks is not conclusive.
I was feeling better but when i got my HIV elisa results I saw my s/co ratio at HIV test was 0.41... if its less than 1 is non reactive, if its equal or more to 1.00 its HIV+.
That would be reassuring to me, right? no. because my silly mind started thinking that 0.41 s/co ratio (signal to cut-off ratio or OD ratio i think its called as well) was too high for a 3 week test, even if it was negative.
Later I learned in another forum that number doesn't matter unless it is near 1, that is the 'magic' number. and that those ratios fluctuate normally, and even that i was not supposed to know that number. they shoudl have just told me i was 'negative' to avoid me unnecessary stress.
I know 3 week elisa is not conclusive (probably doc prescribed it just to keep me sane) so I'll make it at the 3month mark again.

Anyways, here is when I need your help. I haven't been able to speak this to anyone else. Whoever reading this are the first persons in the world that are finding out about this. my fear is irrational
I started having real anxiety attacks, I lost my sleep, I can't even study or focus, i look everyday for rash signs around my body and my tongue is dry the whole time due to anxiety . I've lost some weight probably due to that I'm so scared the whole time i don't eat much since i don't want to have diarrhea and confuse it with a symptom, I even had suicidal thoughts a few times. I want to have my life back. I know this kind of fear is NOT normal. I wrote to doctor Bob which probably didn't answer me because it was a silly question and i understand. yet another guy with anxiety...
I've been reading more on the internet and the info is a bit reassuring. but kinda dual as well:
in some places I found that there have been cases about getting hiv through rimming
or that performing oral sex on a guy is at the same risk than vaginal sex.
and even in some that condoms are not really effective! (wtf!!)

the logical side of me says that my chances are too low to worry. but my other side seems to win the battle with silly 'what if' scenarios
- what if condoms (made in argentina) were not totally good as those made in the US and therefore make me vulnerable to infection even if they didn't break? (even though i didn't notice a rupture or there was no slippage)
- what if a healing pimple i had on my abdomen could have got infected during the rubbing against his body? (his cum stayed out of me though. Since he was with a condom the whole time I think i never even touched it, so if i did, it would had been in really small quantities that i didn't even notice)
- what if i was infected through kissing though some sore i wasn't aware off?
and more 'unlikely what if' scenarios

the only hiv symptoms i've had are:
-thrush in the tongue starting 2weeks4days after experience (and geographic tongue, but both are fading away and i think geographic tongue is not a sign of acute hiv)
-weight lost (but then I haven't been eating much... )

As I told you,
I asked doctor Bob (who by the way is an angel. gosh. He really makes this world a better place. I really appreciate him lots!!) and he never answered...and i understand why! he is too busy replying zillions of questions and mine belongs to those that doens't seem like a high risk.

But i really need to hear it from someone
.please, I need your opinion. given what happened, according to what i've been reading I was at low risk for HIV infection. is that right?
my fears are too way out of proportion?? was my real risk very very low??
if i wouldn't be soooooo anxious, would you actually think i would need to get tested at the 3 months??

please answer me, and I promise I will use my experience to help other people in this forum!. I'm going to get tested in 8 weeks more, at the 3 month mark. If I'm tested positive I'll help to show people that even if you do it just once you can get infected and raise awareness about hiv, or if i get tested negative to show other people that the mind is powerful and hopefully help them coping with their anxiety until they can get tested.

I really need to hear from someone what they think about my real risks. and if you got to read up to here. many thanks very much appreciated

much love and light,
Bios




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ravi
Legend

Reged: 11/19/05
Posts: 1148
Loc: Adelaide, Australia
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go woohoo? new
      #238803 - 04/27/08 05:31 AM

bios23

You cannot get HIV from the activities you report.Testing is NOT warrented. I am not sure what is causing those symptoms, but yes, HIV is not what is causing it.

Good luck

Your worry is unwarrented. Use condoms and you would stay safe!

--------------------
Take Care

God Bless you

Stay Well

Love Ravi

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Robertguy
Regular

Reged: 03/09/08
Posts: 37
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238806 - 04/27/08 09:55 AM

Bios23,
I think you should be calm, 'cause its not possible the way you handled with the guy. Your symptoms are few and not conclusive
I actually didn't use condom performing oral too almost 3 months ago and I'm super scared but I got a reason.
Repeat the test again 12 weeks later the 'exposure' and always do safe sex
Be cool, man

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shadesofgrey
Legend

Reged: 12/02/05
Posts: 724
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go woohoo? new
      #238816 - 04/27/08 08:01 PM

first off, a test was not warranted at all from your description , second if thrush does appear after antibiotics, it would not go away by itself, so i doubt if you had thrush . i think you feel guilty about your homosexual experience , i think you should work on that, go have a test at 3 months if you want to but you dont need it.

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238833 - 04/28/08 04:47 PM

Thanks Ravi. Indeed the activities I reported where EVERYTHING that happened that night. I wanted to be sure to report everything to assess my real risk
Thanks a lot for your answer, as well as for the other members that kindly answered, indeed it has made me feel better. I'm going to have the 3 month test I think, just for the peace of mind but I do feel better.

As promised I'll try to share the knowledge I've gathered to try to inform people on their risk.

Greetings!

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lily
Member

Reged: 04/24/08
Posts: 14
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238834 - 04/28/08 05:03 PM

Your risk is a whole lot less than 0, if that existed, and your symptoms not worrisome at all. If I started counting all the weird smptoms that I've been experienced after my exposure I'd definitely go nuts. Yours are nothing!
My piece of advice apart from keep using protection is: try not to read info from more internet sites at the same time because it gets really confusing. I think you should just stick to the info on one site (this one is reliable) and take that as your point of reference. If you keep reading and reading after a while nothing makes sense anymore... I'm speaking from experience!

P.S. I do agree with the person who said you're probably feeling guilty over your homosexual encounter. I say it's great you experienced it and were careful to use protection.

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238835 - 04/28/08 05:04 PM

Hey Robertguy! thanks for your answer.
your words made me think, that my symptoms indeed are too few. and Even if having more, they should mean nothing. Fear does tricky stuff to otherwise healthy people

After doing extensive reading and after the kind reassurance in this website I brought a little bit peace of mind to my daily activities. HIV-phobia as doctor Bob calls it is really energy draining and you guys have helped me a lot.

About performing oral sex without a condom I read in a forum similar to this one called 'MedHelp' about this guy who would usually performed oral sex on guys, and on two occasions after he finished performing it, the other guy admitted being HIV+ ...
as you can imagine he freaked out, and went to visit his clinic in Boston to ask for PEP treatment.
He was turned down both times because the risk of getting HIV from performing unprotected oral sex is very very low and was not worth the risk of getting nasty side effects from PEP treatment
And once the doctor there took him out of the building, showed him the road and told him his chances of crossing the street and getting hurt were higher.

If you have googled as much as I did when i had my panic attacks i guess you came across with that story,
I was searching in my bookmarks to share it with you but i can't find that link.
Anyways I just wanted to share that story because it brought a little peace of mind to myself and I hope it will help you to be calmer as well.

wishing you the best for your 3 month test ^_^ *crossing fingers and toes*

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Robertguy
Regular

Reged: 03/09/08
Posts: 37
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238858 - 04/29/08 02:55 PM

Hey, Bios23
Thank you for your attention too
I'm crossing my fingers and taking too much care nowadays
I'm just worried about my left leg, that's not getting better at all (my muscle
is getting weak)
I'll let you know about the result pretty soon
Be safe, man

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238874 - 04/29/08 09:21 PM

Hey Lily!!
thanks for your words of reassurance. The fact is that every reaction I get makes me put reason over fear and makes me feel a bit better, and they DO change my days for better. At least I stopped having panic attacks and feeling so 'alone' in this, and I think I owe this to you guys.
I do agree with you on that one should find a reliable website and stick to it! In retrospective reading so much about symptoms, windows periods, risk associated with the different activities and even a bunch of doubtful veracity websites that doubt on the effectiveness of condoms to stop stds made me go NUTS.
I think the best is just stop reading about symptoms whatsoever (I know it's a hard task to do hehe) but it truly makes your days better. That way your body is not aware of what symptom to give you in order to panic yourself out and make your life hell hehe
If I'm tested negative at the 3 month test I promised myself I would become a regular in this website and try to share from the experiences I've learned in order to help future people that are panicking and encourage them to get tested, and one of the advice I was thinking is this one you tell me right now. I think I would be having less fear right now if I would have done this since the very beginning. Like right now I'm having a tremendous gastritis thanks to stress and constant worry.

Another advice I think would be to speak it out and share it with other people (like in this website). To talk about it to someone, what do you think about that? I do think my fear before and after letting my experience out was reduced drastically. Its like you get a weight off you.
And about that, yes, I'm suspecting I'm feeling guilty about bi experience even though I try to pretend I'm not. Fact is that it is not considered 'normal' here (stupid 3rd world) and my parents are soooo homophobic you wouldn't believe. I really think mom would rather see me dead than gay, and I'm not kidding on that one. So even though I consider myself more 'open minded' , that influence of the surroundings is paying its bill on making me feel like baaaaaaaad.
And by the way, thanks for your thoughts on experimenting. I know in other countries it might not be as 'wow' but you can't believe the distress it comes to lie to everyone about it. I sometimes wish that i wouldn't have done that (given the amount of anxiety it has brought to me!! ) but on the other hand I sometimes think its great that I did it, since it was necessary to know myself, and also that if I did it, that at least I wore protection and limited myself to those acts. It could had been way worst.

Anyways, thanks for your kind words Lily
A big hug and lots and lots of good energy towards you ^_^



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lily
Member

Reged: 04/24/08
Posts: 14
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #238971 - 05/05/08 05:02 AM

Hey!
I'm really glad sharing your fears with us has helped you. Talking about things has always helped me, I swear by it. I think it may be useful for you to find a real life person to share your fears and concerns with, although we'll also be here in virtual reality for you. It doesn't necessarily have to be a therapist, but also a friend whom you trust enough to tell your innermost thoughts - like those related to your sexuality and guilt. I know what it feels like, been there. I'm not saying I've sorted things out but I am making progress. I'm not living in a progressive or very tolerant society either but I have always tried to do right by myself so to speak and not care about what other people think. The ones who really love you accept you for who you are.
Take care and good luck with everything!
lily

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #239144 - 05/08/08 06:10 PM

HEy!!
thanks for the reply
its true what you say, the most i share this with people the better I feel
but bummer that even to my CLOSE friends I have to lie that I was with a girl, because I live in those few places where still being bi or gay its not chic lol. or not even acceptable at all!!
so anyways I've been sharing my fear mainly with offline-people and that has helped a lot. You guys and doctor Bob are the only ones in the world that know the real story and that is certainly a relief hehe. Anyways its true what you say.
I'll see where this experience takes me but one thing is for sure, that after I either confirm I'm negative or positive, I'll have a big change in who I am. I'm keeping my promise of becoming a regular here to help other people in the future, hopefully in the negative side where I'll advice other people who are in panic how I gave myself geographic tongue and thrush out of pure fear and that symptoms mean nothing, or on the positive side trying to warn people and promote safer sex practices and support and share with others in similar conditions.
In all this experience I came to realize HIV is not the end of the world, of course I don't want to have it. AT ALL. but I've learned so much about this condition and people living with it, that at least I feel more 'prepared' if something like that happens to me.
I've seen how people can turn an adverse situation and use it to change other people's lives for better, so as Doctor Bob does, so as many other HEROES do out there.
Plus we are lucky to live in an era where medicine improves the general life quality of those with HIV and help them live a normalER life, or when finally scientist managed to exterminate HIV from tissue samples, at least in lab conditions with this new kp-1461 drug.
Even IF that new drug on testing kp-1461 doesn't work on humans, its a whole new concept on how to tackle the virus, and if it doesn't work on the first try, at least I'm sure they will do it eventually. Hopefully in our lifetimes
Remember how syphilis was once a death sentence and how now you can get rid of it in just a round of shots.

KP-1461
http://www.aidsnews.org/2007/09/kp-1461.html

So anyways. thanks for your comments.
I just wanted to drop a few lines to show I'm still here hehe. I'm just gonna login less for now until the 3month mark because I came to realize that all google does to me is confusing me and taking my anxiety to the skies hehe. Somehow I need to take my mind a few weeks off this hehe.

But I'll be back! God wants it that with good news , but I'll be back and become a regular here

THanks a lot

Much love and light,
Bios

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lily
Member

Reged: 04/24/08
Posts: 14
Re: besides obvious mental issue lol,can i go wooh new
      #239382 - 05/18/08 11:02 AM

Hi Bios!
Me too I wanted to let you know I still visit here for extra support. I know what you mean about taking your mind off stuff like this - it's like a break you need from time to time. Unfortunately for me, if after this break I get another symptom or whatever, I get back in the obssessing game with renewed energy! It's a never-ending story...
I think we're all in charge of our own sexuality whether the society around us likes it or not. But I also know society can make us feel guilty about sexual orientation as well as a lot of other things - I for one have been struggling with ethnicity and identity issues for quite some time and only now have I been able to bring myself to talk about it to a therapist and some close friends and family. And that's because the backward society I've been born in is still incapable of dealing with traumas affecting people like myself.
I'm finally realising how much harm this emotional problem has caused me over the years: it's pushed me into depression, self-destructive guilt, obssessing over diseases etc. - all because of issues of self-worth. I wish I knew all this yearlier and treated the cause rather than the effects. I guess better late than never...
As for the whole HIV issue I've come to think that one could take on anything if one believes in a guiding principle. It's no fun being diagnosed with something like that but I think it all comes down to peace of mind and strength of character. I think a person like Dr. Bob has both, thank God for that, plus amazing compassion for human kind! I think it's also very revealing the way he got infected - I honestly think doing a job like his is for people capable of self-sacrifice.

Anyway, good luck on your 3-month test! Let me know how it goes. I have to confess I'm going in again at 10 weeks... Wish me luck! )
Take care!
lily

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bios23
Expert

Reged: 04/27/08
Posts: 110
shades, rob, ravi, lilly, ffo, and everyone readin new
      #240144 - 06/25/08 02:19 AM

Hey Lily!
By looking at the date you must know your result already. I searched on the forums for your posts but I couldn't get a result. how was it??

shades, robert guy, ravi, lilly, my friend finally finding out, and everyone reading

I was working on a reply earlier this afternoon but my brother came to use the computer and before i was finished and in the rush of closing this window i lost it. But it was basically to thank you all because because along with Dr. Frascino you really helped me giving me the always needed emotional support, and accurate information to have a better understanding about the infection.
I've met some great people in this experience including some people with HIV in my city, and now that at least i'm a bit more informed about the subject I'll try to do my part on creating awareness on 'casual sex chats' where, I'm a bit to ashamed to admit, this expereince started, and on giving support and encouraging people to not pay attention to anything else but test results. symptoms mean nothing.
So I'm becoming a regular on this website from now on

Gladly (and a bit sadly?) you guys are better informed than some docs here in catholand. A doc really freaked me out when he found out about the experience, which I told him after a 6 week test I got. and frankly freaked the hell out of me making me think I just exposed myself to a huge considerable risk of contracting hiv...even with protection . technically he is a good doc, but too 'old school' conservative to be a good doc i guess. Anyways that just made things worst since as you remember I was going myself nuts over this, probably by what some of you including lily posted, guilty feelings about bi-curious experience. And I understood the importance of people listening to one. I was really alone in this. not even my best friends still know about the real truth. And my family doesn't even know about me getting tested.

At 6 weeks i got a negative 4th gen antigen - p24 test. Today, past 12 weeks I got another negative. and even though my 6weekt was a 4th gen, I thought for my own peace of mind i better waited the 12 weeks to get a confirmatory test. Some people say 13 but at this point nothing will change

Its 1.09 in the morning, and I'm a bit tired. I'm not even sure if what i'm typing makes much sense, but I thought keeping you guys updated and thanking you with all my hart was really the least thing i could do given the amount of help you gave me. Really thanks a lot.

Anyways, as I stated before, I'm becoming a regular on this forum and will try to do my part on informing people with up to date info and encouraging them to get tested.
Hopefully I can use the scare of my life, and a white tongue even without being HIV poz, to give reasurance on that symptoms mean nothing. One can imagine fever, but not a white tongue. Hopefully that will help making my point on future interventions.

Much love and light and thanks to you all,
Bios



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