Meds, Mind, Body & Benefits > Mental Health & HIV

I am having a real fucking problem

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I have just read your suicide post so I respond to that. I consider myself a very suicidal person, I have tried to kill myself numerous times as a young teen, and so the first thing on my mind when I was diagnosed is naturally suicide. And also damn, you just found out last Monday. I know you don't beleive it, but you are under the big wave right now in the middle of a stormy night, it will get calmer and this is not justa bullshit metaphor. I was diagnosed like you with a low CD4 (77) and not knowing how it happened. About the AIDS diagnosis, I am not disputing that 68 T cells is something to take care of immediatly (are you on meds yet? drinking is not good for so many reasons now), but, keep in mind that AIDS diagnosis nowadays is pretty arbitrary. I was diagnosed AIDS as in the USA in my home country, but in the Netherlands am not treated as AIDS even when below 200, the reason is they look at the infections to define AIDS. So try to understand, you may have an AIDS diagnosis and certailny a low immune system, but you are not necessarily an AIDS patient. It's a matter of a POV, and I know in the US and some other countriesl they diagnose AIDS to help patients with benefits, medical weed, etc etc. So don't think of yourself (yes I know it's hard) as dying from AIDS, you will recover, your system will recover.

I will not lie, it is not easy, but will you beleive me when I say, even with side effects that I have that I worry about, even with stigma, I am happier now than ever becuase first and foremost this diagnosis pushed me to cleanse toxic influences from my life and invite good ones in. You don't have to make an effort to be positive, in your words, just stick with NOT DOING painful things. Such as listening to those messages/reading those emails, drinking, those suspicious pills. Don't think, don't plan, don't do anything but what feels right. You did not have the unhealthy habits before so your gut instinct knows what's right. When the negative, self-depreciating thoughts are screaming in your head, calmly write them down and you will see how unvalid they are. Allow yourself to cry because with getting HIV you lose some things, some aspects of living, that may be really important to you right now. That is true. It's scary as hell, true also. But it is not the end, not at all, I believe that with all my heart. I look at you and I see a beautiful young guy with his whole life ahead of him. I know it makes me sound like an old aunt but I really see that. All the best of luck to you,

Modifiedto add: English is not m first language. i don't mean that emotions are not valid, I mean, when we put them on paper, we see how out of perspective they are, we see how they don't necessaril;y match reality.

For example

"I will never have a relationship"
you don't know that

"I will die of AIDS"
Your doctors said you are in excellent health and there are good meds available


I am not sure how young you are, I think I was exactly at the same place you're in now when I was your age (20 or so?), except the HIV. You need to sort out your whole life now, not just HIV, also work/school, housing, friends, etc. It looks probably like a huge mountain impossible to climb. But you can do it, slowly, very very slowly and with a lot of patience and kindness to your self. I did it... I climbed from being totally abused, dysfunctional, uneducated and dependent on psychiatric drugs to somewhere I could never imagine. I'm not bragging here, just saying I know how tough it is and I beleive in you.

Adding my voice to those who suggested changing phone numbers and email.  If there is some strange reason that you can not do this then you need to tell the asswipes that you want them to not contact you again and if they do you will file a police report about the harassing calls and emails. 

I would say that your ex and his friends behavior is too harsh to believe however having been the subject of some unbelievable cruelty by others I can attest to just how fucked up people can be - particularly when they are either just plain bored or miserable with their own life. Right now they are enjoying you being a powerless victim and you need to change that (both for their perceptions and yours)

Also as someone else suggested - you should print out this thread and bring it to your therapist.  Sometimes we couch our language an feelings in therapy as we are afraid of how to fully express in a one on one what we are really feeling.  I'm not saying you are doing that - but this thread will clearly lay out the issues to your therapist in a clear way.  If you feel she doesn't give you clear help with how to deal with your feelings - then find another.

Finally I think a group (in addition to your one-on-one therapy) would be good for you.  It need not be a "therapy" group though it should be a group of HIV+ people who can give you a sense of camaraderie and sense of understanding in a face to face setting.  I think being with other poz people in person may also diminish the power of what the neg assholes are saying about you. 

Though the bottom line here is you need to work through this with a professional.  At the end of the day we on this board can give you a shoulder and an ear and some advice, but you need a little more than that right now.


I would just like to add that the kind of harrassment that you're undergoing is not only cruel, it's also illegal in most states.  You can often go to court and get a civil protection order to restrain the people responsible.  I'd work with the police and my Internet service provider to trace the source of these e-mails.  Even if the police won't do anything, ISPs are generally quite sensitive to this kind of thing, and it is likely that they will take action against whoever owns the e-mail accounts from which these messages were sent.  The same should be true of your telephone service provider.  In short, I wouldn't take this lying down.

And while I know this should be obvious to anyone, let me just point out that your ex is an absolute ogre.  I can't recall ever hearing of someone saying things so morally depraved.  Clearly, he's a vile, disgusting person.  Would love to find his blog and give him a piece of my mind.  Hmmm . . . maybe you can post the link and we can all have a go at him.   >:(  In any event, I'd pay him as little mind as possible.

As for all the drinking and drugs, I'd give those up and work with my therapist to find an appropriate antidepressant to get you through this period.  I understand how rough it is.  I was diagnosed three weeks after moving to a new city and two weeks after starting my new job.  I got the news early on a Tuesday afternoon and had to go right back to work from the clinic.  I won't lie to you -- the initial period is very, very, very rough.  It can get better later after you adjust to the new reality, but only if you take steps to deal with your emotions.  Your reaction is perfectly normal and understandable, but you will probably need professional help to deal with it. 

Finally, things can get better.  For me, I take both antidepressant and antianxiety meds and see my shrink weekly.  That helps a lot.  Oddly enough, about a year after diagnosis, I met my current partner.  When I disclosed my status to him, I half thought that he'd just walk out and I'd never see him again.  Instead, he just looked at me calmly and said, "Well, we all have our flaws."  We've been together ever since, and despite my HIV infection and steadily progressing lipodystrophy, I can honestly say I've never been happier in my life.  Would I be happier if I were negative?  HELL YEAH!  But I'm not, so I make do with what I have.

Sorry about the long, rambling post.  Just wanted you to know that you're not alone.  If you ever need anyone to talk to, just PM me.  I'd be happy to listen.


Hi Guys!

I wanted to stop by and just thank you all for your kind words. They mean a lot. I don't even remember writing this post, everything gets blurry in my memory when I drink huge amounts of alcohol.

You're all right, my ex is a terrible person and I knew that long before I found out I was positive. Every one of my friends told me he was bad news, but I just never listened. He is someone I cared about, and still do care for a great deal. I don't know why I permitted myself to be abused like that for so long. I wish I could hear him say he was sorry, and know he actually meant it. I wish other people knew him the way I know him. All of his friends, and people who don't know him worship the ground he stands on. Maybe that's why he disliked me so much, because I don't worship anyone or kiss anyone's ass. I just think that maybe if they are ALL saying these things about me that maybe they are right. I mean.... they can't all be wrong, can they?

As I have said before, they are emailing me from anonymous email servers. If you type in "anonymous email" in google you will see what I am talking about. I can change my email address and probably will. I have changed my number once before and they found out what it was, and they sometimes call my home number. I honestly think I am going to move away from my house anyway. My grandmother is in hospice care right now, and she is leaving my property in another country. I have been wanting to move for quite some time, and I think this is finally the push I need.

I dunno. I will write more another time. I don't feel much like writing right now.

Thank you all for your support though.


Andy Velez:
Hi Jamie,

Glad you're feeling a bit better.

You really can't do anything about what others say or think about you nor control their mail to you unless it crosses over into threats, in which case report them to the authorities. So I suggest not putting anymore energy in that direction nor in what your ex might have been since that comes under the heading of what I call zebras will never be giraffes.

What you CAN do is take steps to make your life NOW as good as you can. I urge you to focus in that direction. What do you really want in your life, what will make your life bigger and more content, etc.

It's good to hear from you.



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