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When Your Parent has HIV

By a Daughter

Spring 2000

I am a young lady. I would like to talk about my mother -- my best friend, the strongest woman that I know. To others she might look like a regular lady, but she is a very special person.

My mother has always been there for me whenever I needed her. My mother was also diagnosed with HIV about four years ago. Instead of hiding in a shell, she held her head up high as always. She is there to help others who are also HIV-positive.

When I found out my mother was HIV-positive, I was very sad. I thought to myself, "Why her?" I used to stereotype people who were HIV+. I didn't know it could hit so close to home. I was so upset that for a long time, I was the one who hid in a shell and pretended this was not happening. But my mother, by being the strong woman that she is, has helped me to understand that HIV/AIDS does not have a preference. It does not care if you are white, black, or hispanic, and it is something we all have to open our eyes to, whether we are infected or not. I have learned that we all need to be there for each other. My mother has helped me realize that if we all work together we can find a cure.

Now my mother has helped me to become a stronger and a more understanding person. I now understand that it is not the end of the world because my mother is HIV-positive. We are both strong people because of it. We are able to support each other when we are down. We both have dreams for the future and we want the best for each other just like any mother and daughter.

I would like anybody who has a loved one with HIV/AIDS to know that we need to be there for others. We need to offer our understanding and support for those who need it.

In conclusion I would like to say that ignoring a problem makes it worse. We all need to open our eyes and learn more about AIDS. Ignorance is our worst enemy.

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