Son who is tried of worrying his mother...Please help!!!

Question

Dr. Bob,

I am 3 weeks from my 3 month HIV test. I am currently about to lose my mind. It is a daily occurrence that I find myself in tears over my self analysis. I am continuously checking my throat for enlarged lymph nods. I find myself swallowing spit or drinking water to see if my throat is sore. I will weigh myself at least 7 times a day to check to see if I am losing weight. I also find myself forcing bowel movements and receiving a little bit of hope whenever it is solid. Oh yeah, I cant forget the constant checking my temperature for a fever, which as of this message I have not had one.

At the start of week eight since my unprotected vaginal sexual encounter, I began to have abdominal pains and diarrhea. I went to the doctor told him about my pains and he prescribed me Lonox. I also informed him that I was concerned about HIV. His response was of course one along the lines of 'you have anything to worry about, and the chance of you getting it is extremely small.' So I took the Lonox. I apparently I took too much of it (6 tablets in the span of 18 hours). I couldnt go at all, so I just took two tablets the day after my overdose. On the third day, I finally went to the bathroom and it was solid. Yeah, at least I thought. On the morning of the fourth day, the diarrhea came back. It should be noted that during the entire time that I was taking this medicine, I was still trying to force myself to go so I could get that little bit of hope.

Besides the return of my diarrhea, almost as soon as I began taking the Lonox, I have begun to find enlarged areas along the sides of my Adams apple. Of course, this doesnt help matters.

At that doctors visit that I initially told you about, I took the rapid HIV test which up until now I had no idea it existed, but I do enjoy the quick results. The test did come back negative, which means nothing from what the doctor told me and from everything I have read (and I have done a lot of reading).

As I said earlier, I find myself in tears over all this self-analysis. I keep calling my mom since she is my main source of comfortable. But I know that with every phone call she receives from me about my situation, it only makes things worse for her. This is the main reason why I am asking for your help because I dont want to worry her anymore.

Thanks,

A son of a worried mother

Answer

Hello,

You "find yourself in tears over (your) self analysis . . . continuously check your throat for enlarged lymph 'nods' . . . swallow spit to see if your throat is sore . . . weigh yourself at least seven times a day to check for weight loss . . . force bowel movements to see if they are solid . . . and constantly check (your) temperature . . . ."??? Dude, it's time for you to dry your tears, step off the scale, stop swallowing spit and forcing bowel movements, take the thermometer out of your mouth and take your mother's phone number off speed dial. You also need to turn off the computer and call a psychologist or psychiatrist to help you confront and cope with your extreme HIV fears and anxieties. You have three weeks to go before your HIV test. Counseling and possibly anti-anxiety mediation can help you endure those weeks more comfortably. Don't delay getting the help you need now!

Dr. Bob