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After My HIV Disclosure, Reality Show Says I No Longer Fit the Criteria (Video)

September 30, 2015

In 2014, I applied to the reality show Ink Master. After months of phone calls and emails, I was assigned an episode -- but once I disclosed my HIV status I "no longer fit the criteria."

Tattoo artists go through universal precaution trainings and therefore, my status should not be grounds of disposal, especially with the advancements in HIV treatment leading to undetectable viral loads and furthermore, very low risk of transmission.

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My Liberating Curse

Eric Trujillo

Eric Trujillo
(Credit: Netza Moreno)

In 2008 I was diagnosed with HIV. Boy, was I in for a ride. After a few years and countless experiences, I came to terms with my status. The next step was trying to empower other HIV positive men and women. The stigma and shame attached to this illness is very dominant in present day society and I hope through my disclosure, I can change that. I'll be sharing written stories and videos of things I've learned along the way that may help others. I hope through this blog we can embrace conversation on the topic of HIV and AIDS. The reason I called my blog "My Liberating Curse" is because after years living in fear of catching the chronic illness, I caught it -- and in a way, it set me free. One of the worst things I thought could happen to me happened, and years later here I am, happy and liberated from many mental restrictions. The virus changed my view on life and for that I am very thankful. However it is a curse in a way, because I still have to disclose my status constantly, resulting in rejection, stigma, and fear. Still, this does not impede my life from being any less fulfilling, as I will show you.

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