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Author Topic: How to help my friend  (Read 6170 times)

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Offline jamesf

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
How to help my friend
« on: June 03, 2007, 03:54:52 PM »
I found this site when I was worried about an insurance test I had last year and the info here seemed a cut above and the forums seemed pretty helpful, so I thought I'd ask for your help again.

My mate had his HIV status outed to me and 2 of his other friends by some idiot bouncer at a club in London on Friday. He (the bouncer) thought he was trying to bring in illegal drugs. Obviously they were some kind of combination therapy that he takes around bedtime.

I can't imagine really how it must have felt for him for us to find out that way. As well as a few in the queue in the club lobby. It was out of order.

I also can't understand how useless our "doorman" are in a London club and how they were trying to kick him out, take his meds away etc.

Anyway, my question is simple, I don't know anyone living with HIV but obviously want to help my mate as much as possible. Anything I can do? Anything you guys and girls can point me in the direction of doing?

I don't want to make it sound like such a big thing and be dramatic with him but I want him to understand that all of his mates only care for him and want to help as much as we can.

Thx,
James.

Offline englishgirl

  • Member
  • Posts: 387
  • ACT NOW TO CAMPAIGN AGAINST THE TRAVEL BAN
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2007, 04:41:40 PM »
hi james

you've made a good start in supporting your mate just by caring like you obviously do and you should tell him what you've told us so he knows you want to be there for him in any way he needs.

once youve had a chat to him you may find out that he already has a lot of support but you could also suggest that he comes and hangs out with us on the forums as its a great place to find support and meet people. also as he's in the UK he should check out the lovely people at THT.

really the best thing you can do is be his mate and keep on with the attitude youve got. he's lucky to have you.

xxx
ACT NOW TO CAMPAIGN AGAINST THE TRAVEL BAN:
http://campaigning.tht.org.uk/cms/cmsloader?WfJVLp&view=11,301,1385,0,-html

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=17352.0


"I'm not keen on the idea of the afterlife - not without knowing who else will be there and what the entertainment will be. Personally I'd rather just take a rest." Oscar Berger, PWA: Looking AIDS in the Face, 1996. RIP.

Offline bear60

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,104
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2007, 05:06:09 PM »
A ((((((((((((((((((((( HUG))))))))))))))))))))))))))))) goes a long ways towards letting him know you care about him.  How close are you with him? 
Poz Bear Type in Philadelphia

Offline jamesf

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2007, 05:22:15 PM »
Close enough to do a hug, in fact we all did in the club once we were in. I think he know's we're all there for him.

I'll just keep being a mate and I'll send him the URL for here, even though he may have it.

Thanks and if I may I'll use this place for general questions.

James.

Offline allopathicholistic

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,258
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2007, 11:00:44 PM »
Anyway, my question is simple, I don't know anyone living with HIV but obviously want to help my mate as much as possible. Anything I can do? Anything you guys and girls can point me in the direction of doing?

Hi James. You're a good friend! I would suggest you invite him to join this site!  :P

Offline LT

  • Member
  • Posts: 56
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2007, 11:41:09 PM »
Might I suggest complaining to the club manager.

You should insist that the bouncer be educated on this issue.  He needs to understand how devastating public disclosure of HIV status can be to some people.  ARV's tend to be quite distinct looking pills/capsules.  While the chart at:
http://www.aidsmeds.com/list.shtml
is ok - the graphics are quite small.  Your local HIV clinic, or AIDS service organization probably has a chart with "life sized" pictures of the meds.  If the door person regularly shakes down customers for pills in their pockets, he should be trained to recognize ARV's and act as if he doesn't even see them.

If you don't feel confident in suggesting this to the club's management, call your local agency that deals with AIDS education, and advocacy.  Don't just talk to the person answering the phone.  Ask to speak to someone who deals in education, or advocacy.  Explain the incident to them, and ask that the agency approach the club about the incident, and possibly providing the sensitivity/drug recognition training I suggested above.

As to your comment:
Quote
I don't know anyone living with HIV
You know at least one now.  You may well be friends with, or at least recognize several others, but don't know it.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2007, 11:43:35 PM by LT »

Offline jamesf

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2007, 06:44:01 PM »
Believe me I'm livid with the club. I want to make sure they understand the way they handled it and the education of their doorstaff needs sorting.

Maybe I've been a bit soft here but I asked my mate before I contact them, if he's happy for me to do so. Knowing him he might want me to let it go. I don't know, he's away this week, back next. Anyway, it's his call. However, I will contact the local agency if he doesn't want me to contact the club directly.

As for the "I don't know anyone" who is HIV positive comment, sorry I meant to say I didn't know anyone, but I do now and fully understand I probably know many people who have this virus, but who for whatever reason (I mean this guy is one of my absolute best mates, I'd trust him with anything and he still didn't tell me) haven't told me.

Anyway, I've started raising money for the THT and will be seeing him next week. I guess I'm sort of venting to you guys before I speak to him, just because we haven't had time to talk about this together and wanted to know if you thought I could do anything that would help.

Frankly I can empathise, I can imagine what it's like for him, but I will never really know how he feels. What the replies have done is reinforce what I thought. In short. Just be a mate.

I'll be back with any questions because you're all really helpful and this site is excellent.

thx,
James.
 
« Last Edit: June 07, 2007, 06:52:40 PM by jamesf »

Offline anniebc

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,885
  • AM member since 2003
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2007, 09:56:43 PM »
Hi James

You are already doing so much for him, probably more than you realize, he is lucky to have friends like you around him.

Also it's a well know fact that "Bouncers" in London are not hired for their brains... ;)...I know this incident has upset all of you but as you said, it's his call.

Hugs to you both
Jan :-*
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Never knock on deaths door..ring the bell and run..he really hates that.

Offline megasept

  • Member
  • Posts: 478
  • Steven here...
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2007, 03:27:14 PM »
James: a number of us have been outed by shitty actions. There's a silver lining. Your Mate has a friend who loves him. "No", melodrama is unneeded, but it IS A BIG DEAL having HIV, and no doubt your friend has or is feeling that at least some of the time (He wouldn't be taking his meds when going out if he hasn't faced the realities of his choices and responsibilities).

1) Talk to your friend and touch him (arm around shoulder, etc) when you do so.

2) Share a glass of anything with him and show you know the real risks and non-risks of HIV.

3) Tell him he may speak to you anytime he wants about HIV and how it may affect his life---maybe social problems outweigh medical concerns---and then stick by your offer.

4) Don't treat him like a cripple----if he needs some accomodation (the meds might make him feel sick), generally better if you just let him ask for it. And if he act's shitty towards you, don't give him an "out"----he'll appreciate that you're not babying him by lowering your standards.

5) Introduce him to someone cool who's POZ.

6) Visit this Site weekly.

7) Keep up the friendship---it might last decades if you both make the effort. In fact, if you and your friends stay close for decades you're all going to battle one illness or another, so it's just practice for middle and old age! I wish I had had friends like you years back around sero-conversion time----he's lucky.

 8)  -megasept
« Last Edit: June 08, 2007, 03:33:11 PM by megasept »

Offline jamesf

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2007, 04:07:37 AM »
Update for you all.

Met my mate for lunch yesterday and we did what all good English blokes do when they need to talk about something. We drank. A lot.

During 8 hours we covered every subject from the Middle East, the state of the fashion industry, Spurs' forward line and CD4's.

I can see my mate is handling this well. I guess he'll have ups and downs, but he seems to have got himself more than sorted. I've given him this URL and he's definitely lurked around a bit, I hope it's helped him.

I have a hangover the size of Lincolnshire and a desire to "never drink again". Wonder how long that will last?

James.

Offline LT

  • Member
  • Posts: 56
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2007, 05:51:14 AM »
Quote
I have a hangover the size of Lincolnshire and a desire to "never drink again". Wonder how long that will last?

Probably until the next time you feel the need to talk.  Or maybe the next time there's a game on the tele.  Perhaps even the next time you're thirsty! ;)
« Last Edit: June 19, 2007, 12:55:46 AM by LT »

Offline bear60

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,104
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2007, 02:52:30 PM »
It was good that the two of you have shared this "talk".  Trouble is.....does he remember it. LOL  But seriously, I hope he has reassured you that he is ok.
Poz Bear Type in Philadelphia

Offline villaboy

  • member
  • Posts: 1
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #12 on: June 21, 2007, 12:23:08 PM »
Hi all - just thought id post on here to say thanks to all your kind messages to James.  It is me that has been the subject of James's initial post.

Even though my status was outed to James by the club and not when i wanted or how i would have wanted to have chosen to tell him one thing it has taught me is what a great friend i have in him.

And despite the copius amounts of wine we chose to drink when putting the world to rights i do remember it all and feel much better knowing that there is someone else i can depend on if things get tough.

Respect to you all...x

Offline allopathicholistic

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,258
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #13 on: June 23, 2007, 10:36:29 AM »
Hi all - just thought id post on here to say thanks to all your kind messages to James.  It is me that has been the subject of James's initial post.

Even though my status was outed to James by the club and not when i wanted or how i would have wanted to have chosen to tell him one thing it has taught me is what a great friend i have in him.

And despite the copius amounts of wine we chose to drink when putting the world to rights i do remember it all and feel much better knowing that there is someone else i can depend on if things get tough.

Respect to you all...x

We'll help you any way we can honey. Welcome to the site. That's a cool avatar

Offline jamesf

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: How to help my friend
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2007, 05:37:36 PM »
Just a quick update for you all.

I now volunteer for a local HIV charity. Maybe if you call up I'll end up speaking to you ;-)

Thanks for the help and motivation.

 


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