The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
HIV/AIDS Resource Center for the Newly Diagnosed
Enrique Raul Bernadette Fortunata Heidi Greg Jack Ahmad Lucia

Coming Out as HIV Positive: "I Blacked Out and Went Into My Own World"

August 13, 2013

Lolisa Gibson-Hunte

Lolisa Gibson-Hunte

How can you talk openly about your HIV status when you don't even know what HIV stands for? When Lolisa Gibson-Hunte was diagnosed with HIV over the phone, with her mother listening in, she thought the doctor had made a mistake, but she soon found out that she had a viral load of over 100,000 copies/mL and a T-cell count of 115 cells/mm3. Now, after lots of education, Gibson-Hunte has gone on to work for several AIDS service organizations and has even helped establish Delaware's first needle-exchange program.

Like many people living with HIV, Gibson-Hunte's path toward disclosing her status and living openly took a lot of time. Regarding her first steps, Gibson-Hunte said:

I started doing research about what HIV was, and I found out I wasn't the only one living with it. It took me about six months to really begin to understand what I was dealing with.

After her initial research, Gibson-Hunte determined she must have been born with HIV. Read the rest of her story, brought to you by the Black AIDS Institute -- including Gibson-Hunte's decision to speak at her Delaware high school, her marriage and the birth of her son.

Mathew Rodriguez is the editorial project manager for and

Follow Mathew on Twitter: @mathewrodriguez.

Copyright © 2013 Remedy Health Media, LLC. All rights reserved.

Adapted from:
Coming Out: Lolisa Gibson-Hunte by The Black AIDS Institute

Related Stories

This Positive Life: An Interview With Lolisa Gibson (Video)
HIV Disclosure: African Americans Tell How They Told
12 Questions About HIV Treatment and Care in Pregnancy
Day One With HIV: Finding Out Your Status, in Your Own Words's HIV/AIDS Resource Center for the Newly Diagnosed
More "Just Diagnosed" Stories

This article was provided by TheBody.


Add Your Comment:
(Please note: Your name and comment will be public, and may even show up in
Internet search results. Be careful when providing personal information! Before
adding your comment, please read's Comment Policy.)

Your Name:

Your Location:

(ex: San Francisco, CA)

Your Comment:

Characters remaining:


The content on this page is free of advertiser influence and was produced by our editorial team. See our advertising policy.