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dbltom1
Newbie

Reged: 06/03/14
Posts: 6
Loc: Kentucky
Just starting the Medications
      #277388 - 07/29/14 09:03 AM

I've only been on the medications for a month. Started immedietely after testing poz even though my counts were pretty good. My hair is turning white, I don't sleep well and I'm tired all the time. Every morning and every night when I take my meds I ask myself, "What have I done?" There are days when I don't think I can do this. Anyone else ever feel that way? (also started anti-depressant right away)

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iam1
Fanatic

Reged: 06/17/09
Posts: 167
Loc: Georgia
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277392 - 07/29/14 11:52 AM

Oh, me! Pick me! Let me answer!!!

"What have I done?" - You've lived!

I know the answer is very short and pithy, but that's the way it is sometimes.

You've lived. Everyone lives. Auntie Mame even got Agnes Gooch to live. Did you have fun and enjoy living? Luckily, most of us on this message board can say "YES" to that question!

I'm going to tell you something. Thing is you have to believe me. You probably won't want to, but it's gonna be the truth. You're brand new to the field of being HIV+. It can be a mental shock to most people (more than 99%). It takes time to learn to deal with the reality.

You aren't there. You aren't even in the same Zip code of being there.

Nothing wrong with that. (If anyone ever tells you you're wrong for being depressed (You are depressed.) slap the sh*t out of them and go on your merry way!) I'm making jokes about this to myself, because I am one of the million+ who can sit here and say "Been there. Done that."

Through life we've been taught that HIV=BAD. HIV=DEATH. This is what's ingrained in our minds. Let me be one of the first to stick that twig in and start a crack that can give you some truth - HIV= disease. Nothing more. Nothing less. LIFE=DEATH. I don't know too many people who aren't alive. Everyone of them IS going to die one day. Maybe today. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe in 57 years. Neither you nor they know. With current treatment (which you've already started) people with HIV can be expected to live a regular lifespan. In my own opinion people with HIV can be expected to live a longer than regular lifespan. We go to the doctor regularly. Most people only go to the doctor when they think something is wrong. Like their leg is falling off. Going to the doctor means any problem health wise that crops up can be recognized and treated.

There are still going to be issues that your HIV doctor can't fix. They don't have a magic wand that allows them to mend everything. Be sure to talk WITH your doctor. Discuss how you feel. What meds you take (including antihistamines, pain meds (Tylenol, Ibuprofen, etc), heartburn type meds, and even aspirin. Be aware of health issues. A small thing may just be a small thing. A small thing may be the beginning of a large thing.

How do I know you're depressed? Trouble sleeping. Being tired all the time. Self doubt.

What can be done? You need to educate yourself. You need to talk with other people who are also HIV+ to find out there IS life after the diagnosis and starting meds. You need support. Check with your clinic. There may be a local support group you can go to. If you're feeling up for it you may be able to help start a local support group.

You CAN do this! Thousands of people in your state do this every day. Millions world wide. You just have to get used to doing this. It does get easier. One day without thinking about it you'll discover that you've taken your meds just because that's what you do. It won't happen soon, but try to relax and it will happen.

I've saved the best for last "My hair is turning white". Hate to be the one to tell you, but you're getting OLD! In a couple days you'll be as old as dirt. Within a month you'll be older than the sun. You've started a sudden, endless aging spree. Okay, maybe not sudden. But, you are aging. It started long ago before you were born. It's going to continue until the day you die. As for your hair being white that's just early onset hypochondria. You've tested HIV+. You're going to notice every wrinkle. Every spot. Every white or grey hair. You're looking for something to be wrong.

Short lesson in hair - hair grows from a hair follicle. The part of the hair you see is referred to as the shaft. The follicle is alive. The shaft is dead. I don't care how many stories are told about a persons hair turning white overnight. It doesn't happen. The hair shaft that leaves the follicle is one color. Maybe brown. Maybe black. Maybe white. Because it is dead cells it will always be that color. (Until you get that bottle of Clairol). Any white hair you see has been there. You may just begin noticing it today, but it was there yesterday. And, unless you pull your hair out tonight it'll be there tomorrow. All I've got to say on that topic is be happy you have hair. Some of us are "folliclely challenged". (Going bald or at least thinning noticeably)

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dbltom1
Newbie

Reged: 06/03/14
Posts: 6
Loc: Kentucky
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277397 - 07/29/14 03:06 PM

I hear ya, just having a really bad day. I've done all the right things in regards to my adapting to living with HIV. The hair turning white as quickly as it is I would attribute to stress, its happened before then darkened again, at my age, I'm not holding out for it to darken again this time. I can live with aging, haven't figure out how to live wiht HIV yet.

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PozInAmarillo
Member

Reged: 07/29/14
Posts: 63
Loc: Texas
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277404 - 07/29/14 06:31 PM

Hey look man. I remember the initial shock. Like being kicked in the stomach. And Im not going to tell you it was easy. Early on things were rough. The side effects were bad. Worst headaches Ive ever had And I actually shit myself in my sleep. And being closeted there was no one I could talk to. But you know what? That was 7 years ago. Now at age 51 Im 6-4, 205 # and 11%bf. I feel great. My health is tremendously better than that of my Neg friends. If it wasnt for taking the meds every day I wouldnt even know I was sick. And in case you are wondering, my sex life is over the top! I found that one of the things that helped me early on was taking a proactive approach to my treatment. Educate yourself Knowledge is power especially when it comes to HIV> Work to understand how the meds work and why your docs are doing things the way they are. If you disagree, speak up. Your life has been altered but it is not over. There is no good reason you cant do anything you want to do. Before HIV i was into martial arts, big game hunting and scuba diving. Seven years later im still doing all of those things. I know its tough at first. You have to find the right cocktail. But you will find it and with a good diet and exercise you will wind up being healthier than you are now! And at some point you are gonna look back on these early days and think to yourself, "That wasnt so bad."

--------------------
Nobody can give you HIV. You have to take it.

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dbltom1
Newbie

Reged: 06/03/14
Posts: 6
Loc: Kentucky
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277428 - 07/30/14 08:19 AM

It's so good to know that when I'm having a bad day I can reach out on here and people will respond. I feel less isolated and like there is someone else who understands. Yesterday was particularly bad and you guys were there for me.

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PozInAmarillo
Member

Reged: 07/29/14
Posts: 63
Loc: Texas
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277430 - 07/30/14 01:23 PM

Just hang tough Bro. I know it sucks but it really does get better. I promise it does.

--------------------
Nobody can give you HIV. You have to take it.

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riverprincessModerator
Moderator

Reged: 12/25/11
Posts: 1788
Loc: Jersey Shore
Re: Just starting the Medications new
      #277445 - 07/31/14 09:10 AM

You'll figure out how to start living again my friend. Start with seeing each day as a blessing. One day at a time will lead to a week at a time then month to years and so on .

--------------------
Look up to the Heavens for the answers to Lifes questions .

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