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Author Topic: Where do I start?  (Read 3533 times)

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Offline structuredjen

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
Where do I start?
« on: September 05, 2007, 07:53:03 PM »
The beginning I suppose....

He and I were best friends for years.  We had one of those bonds where everyone around us was convinced there was something going on.  But it was completely platonic.   He liked men, I'm a woman - end of story.  It was never a consideration. 

Then one day something happened.. or maybe it was really there all along.  We found ourselves both single and suddenly it was more than friends.  We talked for a long time about it, us, our feelings, and decided to make a go of it.

That was almost a year ago. 

Rewind to two years ago - he was really sick.  No one could figure out what was wrong.  He had an HIV test, it came back negative.

Last month we found out he's positive.  I've tested negative thus far. We now play very safe, and I'm scheduled for my 3 and 6 month test.

I really felt I'd never find anyone else in my shoes, and it's been really comforting finding this forum and realizing I'm not alone.  But I still feel really alone.

I feel I need to be strong for him, and I want to.  But in the process of being strong for him, I swallow my own fears.  I haven't told anyone close to me, nor do I plan to.  See, the thing is - my family and friends all knew him before we got together.  They all know he lived a gay lifestyle prior to me.  HIV is exactly the word that flashed in all their heads when I told them all about us.  In fact, my father hasn't spoken to me since. I didn't care what they thought then, nor do I really care now  - but I'm highly doubtful that any one of them could provide the support I'm looking for.  And I feel that telling him the things that run through my head could only hurt the positive thinking he needs from me.

I'm scared.  I'm scared I'm not strong enough to take care of him and myself.  I'm scared I'm going to lose him.  I'm really not scared that I'm going to become positive.  I've thought several times that I wish I was. I don't really mean that, I know that - but some days it just seems like it would be so much easier if we were in the same boat.  I sometimes I feel like HIV is this meteor that's crashed down between us.  I feel like we both belong to different clubs.  I try to imagine what he's going through, but I know I can't really - and I don't think he understands what I'm going through.  I'm definitely looking into counseling in hopes we can find a forum to share our feelings - but even a counselor scares me.  See - maybe I'm just jaded, but I just feel so convinced that people will look at us like we're nuts.  Well, me actually - I'm with a "gay" man who now has HIV and the only advice I can imagine is "Run, you stupid woman" - and that's not what I'm looking for.

He's doing pretty well.  There are days he's really pessimistic, or maybe it's realistic.  And there are days that almost seem normal again.  He just received his first labs - cd4 in the 300's, viral load 50,000 (did I say that right?  I'm new to the lingo).  His first doctor appointment is in two weeks.

I don't want to run.  I love him.  At the same time.... I'm so scared.






Offline SecretKeeper

  • Member
  • Posts: 52
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2007, 10:00:34 PM »
I'm scared.  I'm scared I'm not strong enough to take care of him and myself.  I'm scared I'm going to lose him.  I'm really not scared that I'm going to become positive.  I've thought several times that I wish I was. I don't really mean that, I know that - but some days it just seems like it would be so much easier if we were in the same boat.  I sometimes I feel like HIV is this meteor that's crashed down between us.  I feel like we both belong to different clubs.  I try to imagine what he's going through, but I know I can't really - and I don't think he understands what I'm going through. 

Amen to that.  I've thought every single one of those thoughts, just couldn't quite articulate it as well as you just did. 

Offline xyahka

  • Member
  • Posts: 794
  • Dance together!! aha!! aha!! I like it!!
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2007, 03:41:32 AM »
You will be strong and he will be strong, Hiv is something people learn to live with. You see... human being are very strong and adaptable creatures. Try to see you both as a team.. not against Hiv, but a team to keep on reaching your goals in life... hiv is just another obstacle from many you will face. Eventhough, it is an obstacle that can be handled, that's what we do.

Go for counselling and start creating this relationship where you both can express your concerns and fears like two good friends and like partners. When we are in a team of two... sharing thoughts is important.

Things will be OK, keep the faith high.

Juan Carlos
13/03/07 1er diagnóstico /Peso: 79kg
19/04/07 CD4: 494 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 80kg
19/07/07 CD4: 659 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79.5kg
06/03/08 CD4: 573 (después de meses muy deprimido) /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79kg
17/09/08 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 84Kg
06/02/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 85Kg /HCV: Neg /HBV: Neg.
07/03/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg / Gym 3días/semana y Natación 2días/semana.
12/05/09 CD4: 470 /Cviral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg.
08/07/09 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 77Kg.
09/12/09 CD4: 510 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg. No medicinas aún
10/01/10 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
15/05/10 CD4: 320 /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
01/02/11 CD4: 291 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
05/05/11 CD4: 366 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
27/07/11 CD4: 255 /CViral: 138000 /Peso: 78kg.

Disfrutando y aceptando una nueva vida...

Offline Fabrizio

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2007, 04:07:08 AM »
Hello,

my partner was diagnosed in June, and I do understand what you are going through. I have been worried for him, for myself, and wonder what's our future going to be like. I also had an issue with my family: they had just began to cope with the idea of me being gay and cannot think about telling them about Hiv (exactly, the word they have in their mind when they think about homosexuality).

Nevertheless, my partner and I look forward a long life together, we have a good time, we argue about silly things... that's just a way of saying that things can look pretty normal living with Hiv.

I hope your tests will come back negative; if so, you can relax and in 100 years in a magnetic relationship there would be no reason one should get infected...

Keep well. You are most surely not alone out there!

f.
Worried and Optimistic Negative Partner

Offline structuredjen

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2007, 08:57:10 AM »
thank you so much for your responses - it's so nice to hear encouragement :)

Do you ever feel incredibly selfish?

That's all I seem to keep feeling lately.  I feel like no matter what my problem is, whether it's HIV and my fears regarding our future or something as trivial as work - it's nothing compared to what he's going through.

I feel selfish for feeling needy.  I feel selfish for even feeling like I should even have needs right now when he's going through so much more than me. 

Do you ever feel the same way?  How do you get through that?  Am I right in feeling selfish and really shouldn't even think about putting my own dispairing moments on him right now? or am I just creating an invisible barrier for myself?








Offline Fabrizio

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2007, 11:42:15 AM »
Hello,

selfish? Personaly I don't feel selfish, and you surely don't sound selfish. More broadly, I don't think the worries of a negative partners should be defined as such.

We have all had plans for the future and we perceive Hiv as an unpredicted challenge and this cause preocupations: would you believe someone saying "my partner has just being diagnosed but I ain't bothered!" ?

You should think about both of you, take care of him and yourself and try to relax. Time will help you and you will soon notice that Hiv is no longer your first though in the morning and the last one at bed-time.

Hiv care-givers are reduntant and obsolete: treatment is very effective and his Hiv is unlikely to change your lifes. On the other hand, "negative partners" like us can get cancer or have an accident and our positive partners will take care of us. Yep, I an atheist but still like that part "...in good health and illness..."

Yes, visiting the hospital for blood tests and treatment side effects can still be a preocupation: I encourage you to get help from friends to get through this "minor" Hiv challenges. And you can always send me a message.
Worried and Optimistic Negative Partner

Offline tester8888

  • Member
  • Posts: 182
  • 32,wm, gay, hiv neg at 7 weeks, friend is newly +
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2007, 10:08:37 PM »
I know what your saying SJ about feeling selfish when you think about your own needs.
 
While I certainly have not known my friend as long, or had anywhere the same type of relationship as you have, I too had what I think of in a way as Survivor's Guilt.

I walked on eggshells, not complaining about that pain in the ass at work, or that damn credit card bill, or even how much the tooth I just broke hurt me. 
I went in this way for about 3 weeks.

I don't know if my epiphany came from being on this forum, and seeing that people want to go on with their lives and be treated normally, or if maybe he finally slipped back into the routine of things, or what happened exactly.  But, finally, I decided that the world had not stopped, life goes on, the good and the bad, and quit trying to do as I had, and make the world a Candyland. 

It's a journey that I was totally unprepared for, and am still trying to find the way.  I have started acting and treating him, like we were before his diagnosis, and have left it up to him to let me know if it's one of those 'not okay' days.  On those days, I do make everything all about him, and sugarcoat everything.  But, everyone knows, that your own needs don't diminish his, nor should his diminish yours.  Which person and which needs get the most attention will/should always be in flux.  I initially worried about how to treat him sometimes, because I did not want him to think that HIV was the way that I identified him.  That he was still the same person as he was before.  That has been an obstacle that I have faced throughout.  I have no doubt that I have made some mistakes, and will certainly make some more.  But a good relationship is based on the fact that you can understand good intentions, and forgive mishaps, and have good communication about your feelings and needs.

Good Luck To You
7 weeks post exposure, tested HIV Negative.

Be Kind To Everyone You Meet, For You Do Not Know What Battles They Have Fought That Day.

Offline structuredjen

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #7 on: September 09, 2007, 02:45:09 PM »
Tester-

Normal is something that seems so far away at times.  But it's getting better.

I just finished reading HIV: The First Year.  If you haven't read it, I highly recommend it.

I've realized two things needed to happen for me:

1. knowledge
2. support

I have found both here. 

I was one of the so many people who thought HIV = death.  Educating myself on what it means to have HIV today has changed things drastically for me.  I fully expect him to be taking care of me when I'm old and gray.

Knowing I'm not alone has been just as good for me.  I remember when we first found out- we'd go to some public place and I'd look around thinking no one understands, no one possibly could.  I felt so alone.  Finding this forum made me realize I'm so not alone.         

And it's interesting.  The better I feel, the more normal things seem to be.

Thanks for your post. :)

Offline water duck

  • Member
  • Posts: 397
Re: Where do I start?
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2007, 05:34:12 PM »
When two person are in the same boat, and doing the same thing, the boat , will not move forward.

"I feel i need to be strong for him " why is that so, why not show your weakness, maybe, in your weakness , he just might find back his strength !!

KNOWLEDGE : now that is something interesting !! knowing too much; too little ; just enough .
anyway, it is a double edged sword , it cuts both ways. so be careful, what you feed yourself with.

Support : sure, you will get it here, then , you still need to choose and not go into forums that discuss things you don't need to know right now and  that may scare the shit out of you.

You talk about fear, which , most of us here, one way or the other , have to face on a daily basic !!
But FEAR is so self prophecy , what you fear most will come true; so i decide to tie it's hands behind , with it's butts in the air , so i can whip it shitless  ;D

Why think about "start" why not think about "continuing "  ;)

Wd

 


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