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Author Topic: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?  (Read 4565 times)

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Offline Peaches15

  • Member
  • Posts: 4
How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« on: September 22, 2007, 09:53:24 AM »
Hello All,

I'm new to the forums but have been dealing with HIV for about 10 years now.  

I'm just wondering how do you all deal with the loneliness?  This has been a bad couple of days for me and I don't really have the support to reach out.  My friends don't know about my status, and my family just needs to know that I'm healthy and still breathing --- we don't do so well with the emotional end of things.  I tried 2 support groups years ago, but had to give those up when they just didn't seem to address my needs.  Most of the women were former drug users, and inevitably the conversation would be dominated with dealing with life without drugs and I couldn't relate and felt out of place.  

Men?  What are those?  Met a couple that I REALLY liked, but I always ended up in the "friendship zone."  One knew my status, the second I just never told him because the relationship never reached the "sexual" level.  So now I've basically given up on the friendship and find that I have no one to talk that knows the WHOLE story.  

So now what?

Offline mesu

  • Member
  • Posts: 55
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2007, 10:11:35 AM »
Hi

You are not alone...the people in this forum provide a lot of support to each other. I myself was recently diagnosed and none of my friends except my ex knows about my status. My close female friends are married with kids, and I m just afraid if i told them, they may leave me...I come to this forum and met wonderful people here and we exchanged emails or chat online.

I went to a support group last week and it helped a lot. I m the only girl there (the rest of them are gay) but they are great people..and i love them all.  we talked about our experience with HIV, meds, relationship. I hope you will find a support group that fits you..dont give up....

several weeks ago, i thought no one will love me becasue i m poz, but after talking to people in the forum, i realize it is not impossible....we just need to be patient.

whenever you feel lonely and feel you have no one to talk to, come online and we are all here for you. 


mesu
Jan/Feb 07 - infected :(
Sept3: cd4 162; 13.5% VL 24,000
Oct5: cd4 68 13.6%
Nov6: cd4 205  14.64%
Dec10,07: cd4 188  15.67%  VL: 9900
FEB15,08: cd4 242 18.62%
Mar10/08: cd4 219 15.64%  VL: 7300
May26,08: start Truvada and Sustiva
July 18,08: cd4 255, 18.50%, VL undetectable (<75)
Nov 4,08: cd4 380, 27.14%,
Feb 6,09: cd4 296, 22.7%,
May 26: cd4 351, 27%,
Aug 28: cd4 310, 28%,
Dec 2009: cd4 321, 35.67%,
March 2010: cd4 325, 32%,
June 2010: cd4 385, 29.5%,
Sept 2010: cd4 368, 30.75%,
Feb 2011: cd4 431, 43.1%,
Jun 2011: cd4 433, 30.93%,
Sept 2011: cd4 435,  36 %,
Jan 2012, cd4 467, 33.36%
May 2012: cd4 421, 38.21%,
Sept 2012: cd4 393, 30.23%,
VL: undetectable since July 08

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,343
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2007, 10:22:10 AM »
Good Morning Peaches,

I see you're online and I want to welcome you first and then tell you this will be a quick post as I'm heading toward to the door.

Ten years, heh? I'm just past year 4. By your message, your loneliness is two-fold, perhaps three-fold. Support from family is marginal. You've not told any of your friends. And, you want a relationship with a man, too.

Good news. You're here. This site and particularly this forum will give you some support, some humor, er, actually a lot of humor!,  updated medical info, and more.

As to support in and of the flesh, I can only write of my experiences. Every one of my friends who are close and even many of the secondary tier know. All of my family knows. As I got more accustomed to being positive I realized the most toxic thing was to be held prisoner by my imagining what others would think or say. So, I took a preemptive strike by being the one to inform and include.

And, like a rubber band stretched by the truth for moment, my friendships are mostly just as they were before. We talk about everything as we used to, I'm typically the only one who might say something virus-related, and life goes on. The only difference is that they know part of the stressload in my life just like if they have cancer, divorce, miscarriage, etc, and I know it, then I know of the additional challenges they face.

Your friends may surprise you if you let them in to your cave. After ten years, may I ask why no one is allowed to know? Are you afraid they'll bolt? If one of them shared such news with you, would you bolt? If they were to, would that have been the kind of friend you would have wanted?

It's just a virus.
It's just a virus.
It's just a virus.

We haven't murdered anyone. We haven't taken anyone's life savings. We haven't molested a child. We, well, we just have a virus.

From my own experience, again, what I've discovered is the more I just hold the truth of it and share it, it takes some of its godawful power away. It's just one of a slew of traits or aspects or descriptors of me.

Doing this has made me more available to those whom I wish to be close to and has helped me immensely in steering away from those who are not a good match. And, I think that helps in finding a partner. Poz or neg.

I hope this is helpful to you.

So, glad you're here.

Em

edited - I see Mesu posted while I was writing. See, now you know two new supportive people.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2007, 12:05:11 PM by emeraldize »

Offline Peaches15

  • Member
  • Posts: 4
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2007, 12:31:29 PM »
Hey Mesu and Em,

Thank you so much for your responses.  I have to say that I didn't find the support groups a waste of time.  At the time that I went I was still dealing with the diagnosis, and the first group was filled with women who had been dealing with the virus for years!  So I really valued having them in my life at the time that I did.  They were able to help me get back on my feet when I was basically walking around in what I can only describe as being "shell shocked."  Unfortunately for me during both my initial diagnosis, I was on vacation and got sick, and went I got home to a specialist, I had the misfortune of getting what had to be two of the most insensitive doctors on the planet!  This group stepped in with the knowledge and patience that I just wasn't getting from the medical professionals.  So my initial experiences of revealing just weren't positive, and I guess I still carry that with me.

I haven't told my friends about my status because of my trust issues.  One or two I do want to confide in, but I always find some reason to decide that "now is not the time."

I would love to find a support group, but so far the only ones I see that I'm interested in meet while I'm at work.  So I end up coming home, and parking in front of the tv ...

Anyway, thank you for welcoming me.

Offline Queen Tokelove

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,033
  • Smokey the Smurf
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2007, 01:06:55 PM »
Peaches~~

Welcome to the Forums. You have found the right place and there is great support here. I have been with this virus for 10 years too and the lonliness still gets to me at times too. You will learn everyone has their own experiences when it comes to disclosure. It doesn't work so well for me because those that I did tell either used it against me or just treated me like crap including my own family. So, I have my own demons with disclosure. But you have to do what is right for you, none of us can make that decision for you. And we all know about men, we have a thread on it, actually we are up to number 5. At the moment I am too lazy to post the links maybe one of the other ladies will. Welcome again and glad you found us.
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline Thick713

  • Member
  • Posts: 11
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2007, 06:23:15 PM »
Hey Peaches ...

I hope that all is well with you today ... I too am new to the club (HIV) - and I had the same issues as yourself in the beginning .. I've found out my status in January 2005 - and it was a very big secret to keep .. I was also on a mild anti depressant for awhile .. until I came clean with my family and finally my daughter ... whew .. what a relief ... as a matter of fact - I don't take those darn antidepressants anymore ... but don't let my issue hinder your thought process ... but if you ever need a friend to talk to .. you can email me at Thick713@pacbell.net ... and we can talk  .. whatever your preference is .. but you take care of yourself ...

Your New Friend
Thick713 aka Bev  ;D


Offline cjc

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,011
  • Sweet Girl
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2007, 09:00:20 PM »
Hello Peaces.  welcome to the forums. Most of my support I find right here. I have been positive since 2004. I told my parents immediately and my brother and cousin eventually. I have found the people here to be lifesavers. I tend to isolate myself anyway but being able to come here helps.                     We ladies have a dating thread and it can be funny. I personally have not had much luck dating. Hope you can feel comfortable here and hope to hear more from you.   Cristy

Offline BT65

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 9,912
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2007, 09:10:58 AM »
Welcome Peaches.
   I guess I handle loneliness pretty well, because I've always been a bit of a loner.  My family knows my status and are supportive,most of my friends know my status and are supportive.  I don't care who knows my status, I figure if someone is going to leave my life because of it, then o.k., let them leave.  But I haven't found a person yet who has done that. 

The only support group I go to is when I go to meetings (recovery meetings, like N.A./A.A.).  But I know support groups can be wonderful things.  Especially when you don't trust other people in your life.  I would encourage you to go and maybe hang out with a couple of them outside of the group time. 

These forums are wonderful.  You should really check out some of the other threads and various titles, like "Living with HIV," "Off Topic," etc.  The guys are great also.  I'm glad you found us!
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline lawless64

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2007, 06:50:25 PM »
Peaches,

I am newly diagnosed (today actually marks the 1month mark) and I'm very thankful that I found this site.  I don't post much but I do get hope by reading the various postings and the wealth of information available. It helps to have someone to talk to if not family then try counseling individual sessions, if the group thing isn't quite working.  I currently attend individual sessions but my counselor is hoping to form a women's group at her facility.  Being newly diagnosed, I am looking forward to meeting other women to understand how they're coping. But as it has been stated before by others, this website is a comfort. I don't have any immediate family around but my sister, brother and mother know my status.  My sister and I talk nearly everyday unfortunately now it's more her concern for me but thankfully we've had a close relationship for years.  I guess, another thing that helps me is I have a dog, my best buddy he helps me take the focus off myself.  Other things to help is watching a senseless comedy nothing thought provoking but something that makes you laugh 'til tears stream and your side aches. Keep contact with poz.com, the people here are great support. 

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,343
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2007, 07:58:36 AM »
Lawless and Peaches

Other things to help is watching a senseless comedy nothing thought provoking but something that makes you laugh 'til tears stream and your side aches.

What Lawless wrote here is exactly what I did for several months after diagnosis. I curled up in front of Comedy Central every night and laughed and laughed at stuff I'd never seen before. It was the complete opposite of the diagnosis news and incredibly beneficial for me.

Em

Offline BT65

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 9,912
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2007, 06:50:22 AM »
I still make it a point to watch a comedy every day.  I need to laugh every day.  Peaches, where are you? 
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline aserenityseeker

  • Member
  • Posts: 27
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2007, 07:13:55 AM »
To handle the loneliness I have two cats which really keep me laughing and they are a joy to care for each day. They now when you are sad or sick and they just love you no matter what. ::) I also call my friends and family to have emotional bonds with others as having a friend love you and get a hug from really does help. Its not the same as having that someone special living with you and sleeping with you..but when the time is right God will bring that love to us I hope so anyway  :D
Positive since: 1993
T-cells: 543
Viral load: Undetectable
Meds: Truvada & Kaletra

Positive, Alive and Seeking Serenity :)

Offline cjc

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,011
  • Sweet Girl
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2007, 03:31:12 PM »
To handle the loneliness I have two cats which really keep me laughing and they are a joy to care for each day. They now when you are sad or sick and they just love you no matter what. ::) I also call my friends and family to have emotional bonds with others as having a friend love you and get a hug from really does help. Its not the same as having that someone special living with you and sleeping with you..but when the time is right God will bring that love to us I hope so anyway  :D
                                                                                Good point, SS. I have 2 cats and they really do provide a lot of love. Just about any kind of pet can give unconditional love. Hell, even our guppies crowd the front of the tank when I walk up to it. Animals are great.  Cristy

Offline MOONLIGHT1114

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  • Posts: 1,918
  • Cheech 2.2.94 - 4.23.10 We miss you so much!
Re: How Do You Handle the Loneliness?
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2007, 01:16:37 PM »
Hi Peach~

Some ladies are right on here.  A pet is THE best form of therapy.  Also, and I'll state it simply.....You have to be strong and push yourself.  Know that you aren't wrong to feel lonely, but know that unless you try, things aren't going to change.  This has been esp difficult for me mentally, with dates, with family, and I have no GFs close by....but!  I keep pushing and I have grown more confident and I know its OK if I am lonely sometimes.  Then I just jump back up and try to meet people, and to do things.  The biggest problem has also been fatigue, its hard to push yourself when you don't feel like getting out of the house, but its always worth the effort.

~Cindy
HIV+ since '93, 1/12 - CD4 785 and undet.   WOO-HOO!!

 


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