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Author Topic: just found out my brother has hiv  (Read 16410 times)

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Offline lilsis

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  • Posts: 2
just found out my brother has hiv
« on: May 10, 2008, 11:19:56 AM »
I just found out 3 days ago that my brother has HIV. It was a huge shock. I never though anything like this would happen to anyone in my family, but it did. It makes me so sad for him and for the pain that he is in right now.

He really feels humiliated and upset and like he let this happen to him. I try to reassure him that he did everything to prevent it and he didn't let it happen. Its not is fault. It's no ones fault.

I wish I could take this away from him, but I can't.

I'm trying to learn all that I can right now so that I'm more informed. This way I can understand what he is going through and what I can do to help him.

I've gone through a lot of emotions in the past few days myself. Mainly from shock to denial to depression and finally to hope.

Offline BlueMoon

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  • Calling from the Fun House
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2008, 12:09:01 PM »
I'm trying to learn all that I can right now so that I'm more informed. This way I can understand what he is going through and what I can do to help him.

Lilsis, good for you.  Your support will mean a lot.  I would like to confide in my little sister, but just can't seem to do that to her.  Maybe some day.
08/10-- ......<40.....290.....42
05/10-- ......<48.....290.....46
02/10-- ......<48.....481.....44
10/09-- ......<48.....277.....46
07/09-- ......<48.....300.....38
05/09-- ........51.....449.....39
03/09-- Added Isentress
02/09-- ........65.....299.....34
11/08-- ........62.....242.....40
08/08-- ........66.....212.....29
05/08-- ......202.....217.....27
03/08-- ....5210.....187.....21
02/08-- Began Truvada/Reyataz/Norvir
12/07-- 273,000.....157.....22
11/07-- 229,000.....209.....22
10/07-- Diagnosis

It's a complex world.

Offline BT65

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2008, 10:04:12 PM »
Lilsis, under the AIDSMEDS.COM logo, there is a link to "lessons" that might be worthwhile to read.  You sound like such a support.  Your brother is lucky to have you.  Thanks for supporting him.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline WillyWump

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2008, 11:49:59 PM »
Like your brother, I am newly diagnosed also. The most wonderful thing you can do for him now is to be there for him and support him in any way you can, which you are doing. He's going to be on a rollercoaster ride of emotions for awhile. I understand the shame/humiliation part of it he is feeling, you can help him with this by continuing to show your love for him. Tell him you love him dearly and never will stop regardless of what he has. Hold him, love him.....trust me it helps :)

He is so lucky to have you and you are an angel :)
POZ since '08

Last Labs-
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6/3/14 CD4- 736, UD 34%
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Current Meds: Prezista/Epzicom/ Norvir

Offline bear60

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2008, 01:51:44 PM »
Treating him "differently" is another issue that often is addressed when talking about  someone who has contracted HIV. 
First off.... you are correct in saying.... "its nobodys fault."
But, if you treat him differently now, you are by doing that, feeding into his "humiliation".  Perhaps he needs some space or time to sort out his feelings. Give him time.
I think you have to treat him like the brother he has always been.  Yell at him or kiss him or whatever it is that you do together that makes your relationship close.
..............just another thought....................
« Last Edit: May 12, 2008, 08:38:00 AM by bear60 »
Poz Bear Type in Philadelphia

Offline ga1964

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2008, 02:24:24 AM »

God bless you for supporting your brother. 

I found out my status a little over a year ago and have told my partner and parents, but I can't bring myself to tell my brothers and sisters.  Facing and telling my partner and parents was the most devastating and humiliating thing that I have ever faced in my life.  Not only did I have to tell them my status, but also had to face the shame that they would know that I had cheated in my relationship with my partner.

The thought of having to go thru that again with my brothers and sisters terrifies me.  I wish I could tell them because I hid the fact that I'm gay from them for 15 years and thought I would not ever have to hide anything from them again.

If you don't mind me asking?  You did not say how you found out about your brother's status, did he tell you or did you find it out some other way?  Not trying to be nosy, but if he told you, how did he go about it.  Just wondering so that it might help me face my brothers and sisters.

Continue supporting him and be there when he needs someone or just to let it all out.  Your love and support will meen more to him than you will ever know.

God bless you and him.

Offline lilsis

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2008, 09:26:28 AM »
My brother came home after finding out and told my parents. We all live together and I think he was so upset that he was something he just needed to tell someone to have some support. I was at work. My brother had my parents tell me and my other brother. Afterwards I went up to him and talked to him and told him that my parents told me and I was really sorry to hear that and we cried together and I gave him a hug.

I'm sorry I can't help you more. I can understand not telling them. Its must be very hard especially when you are dealing with all the emotions. I see my brother right now and its all he can think about. He upset most of the time and just can't handle telling people. You will tell them if and when the time is right.

Offline ga1964

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  • Posts: 188
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2008, 12:57:10 AM »
Thank you for telling your story. 

It helped me more than you can know.  Your brother is very lucky to have you as someone he can lean on for support.  I know how he is feeling not being able to think about any thing else and his fear of telling others.  I was supposed to call a ADAP case worker Monday to make an appointment to try and get some help with the bills that has come with HIV, but I haven't called yet because anxiety hit when I picked up the phone.  The thought of telling a complete stranger face to face has me freaked out.  I'm going to have to get over it some how because I can't keep up with the expenses.

God bless and I hope your brother find so calm in his life.  Its not easy, but if I can find 5 min. of calm, it helps.

Offline emeraldize

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2008, 08:24:34 AM »

You're a nice person---that is evident in your wanting to get some understanding of the disease to be of greater support to your brother.

I wanted to share with you that my mom and all of my siblings know. And, the best thing they've done? There's been virtually no difference in the way they treat me except...perhaps we communicate more often! But that just might be a by-product of our all being older--hard to gauge.
It's easy to think it might be hiv-story-related, but I'm not so sure. I think it's just part of the aging process. We are all over 50.

My whole family has been very kind and supportive as have all of my close friends and those relatives who know. A slew of strangers know because I've begun to talk to high school and college students about protecting themselves. I am "out" with my boss because I work in an area of hiv prevention research. I have yet to deal with any overt hostility although I am not naive---I know it exists.

The way you, your family and his medical team treat your brother will have much to do with how he comes to terms with his new health status. However, it ultimately rests on his decisionmaking, his self esteem, etc. A little counseling can go a long way to make that path less complicated.

Have a good spring/summer.


Offline BT65

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2008, 11:18:53 AM »
GA1964,  you know your brothers & sisters best.  However, most families' initial anger I think is more toward the possibility of losing someone they love more than the mistakes that person made.  It would be a bit unsettling for them to find out if something happened to you without you having told them before.  Just a though.  Good luck.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline mpls_apple

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  • Posts: 21
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2008, 03:05:22 PM »
The best thing you can do for him is to support him. let him know that he hasnt done anything different than anyone else has in the world, he was just delt a bad hand of cards.

Make sure he knows he doesn't need to disclose his status to anyone, just who he feels comfortable telling, that takes time. I still havent told my dad, but everyone else in my family knows, a few select people at work know and most of my friends. but that all took alot of time

Most of all make sure he knows HIV isn't a death sentence, Most people live a full life like they would have before they contracted HIV.  He will have his ups and downs, especially that first year.
dreams can be deceiving, like faces are to hearts.

Offline shadoos

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  • Posts: 10
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2008, 05:31:42 AM »
It is wonderfull you are there to support your brother.  I wish I had the same type of support.  It hasn't even been 6 months since I was diagnosed.  I feel so alone all the time.  He is so lucky to have you.  You are truly an angel!!!

Offline mjmel

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  • Posts: 2,069
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2008, 11:55:34 AM »
Lilsis, I hope your brother gets introduced to this site. It is tremendously helpful. He will gain some comfort in knowing he's not alone. He will gain knowledge and possible strategies to manage his life. There's hopefulness here. Written in the words of others.
Lessons, Drugs, Forums, Blogs, Cool Tools, News, Reading List, Links, Search feature, etc. all at the top of this page too!!

He's blessed to have a sis like you.


Offline HopeandCope

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    • Hope and Cope
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2008, 10:39:23 AM »
You are doing the most wonderful thing in the world for your brother and that is being there for him to listen to him and support.  BIG HUGS TO YOU!!!
Hope and Cope Support Site
A Safe Place for Families & Friends of HIV+ People

Offline BabySis

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  • Posts: 4
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2009, 11:09:05 PM »
Lilsis, Im in a very similar situation as your own, I found out by bro has HIV last night, it has been a rough day for me, but I am determined to help him through this new stage in his life and provide the same love and support that I always have had towards thing.

You are doing a great thing in supporting your brother!

Much love

Offline PeteNYNJ

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  • When life gives you AIDS...make LemonAIDS!
    • Dance for Me, Puppets
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #15 on: February 12, 2009, 06:43:20 PM »
Let me echo the others by saying big hugs to you for trying to understand the disease.

I told my sister while we were waiting to see a doctor in the ER.  It wasnt anything HIV related but I was going to disclose and she needed to know.  When I told her, it was like she was punched in the stomach - she broke down in tears (she is a nurse so she has seen the worst).  I told her stop crying, it is all about me now - we laugh about it now.

That is one of those memories that will live forever in my mind - telling my sister I am HIV+ and her reaction.  I would never wish that pain on anyone.

She has been a great support but remind you family....IT WILL BE FINE!   I was diagnosed three years ago and here I sit healthy as a horse, no meds, and lots of love of family and friends.

Again, welcome to our world and ask ANY question you want, no matter how personal. You can PM me if need be.

with love


Offline peaches1647

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Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #16 on: February 25, 2009, 11:50:16 AM »
Lilsis, I found out my brother was poz 18 years ago and how I found out was not in a good manner. I had gotten a call from a facility(jail), they told me their name and gave me the information and said I needed to contact a few people. I was the only one who knew, and to this day I am the only one he will discuss with openly. Its not easy at times, but I do love him unconditionally and we would do anything for each other. I do not judge him in anyway, there is no reason to.  But others do, I let him vent when he needs to vent without interruption. There is no difference with us in our relationship, we still goof around on the phone and I send him goofy stuff to make him laugh. Anything for a smile and anything to lift his spirits. It is a rollercoaster ride of sorts, please stay strong and be there for your brother, it will mean the world to you both in the end. Good luck to you and your family.

Offline ga1964

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  • Posts: 188
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #17 on: February 26, 2009, 01:01:31 AM »

I was just wondering how things are going.  Is you brother doing well and how are you holding up?  I still have not gotten to the point that I can face my siblings, I just hope when I do, they are as compassionate and supportive as you.  If everyone could be like you, I don't think the stigma and shame that comes with HIV would be as bad.

Please keep us updated as you make this journey with you brother.


Offline rpm1437gcw

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  • Posts: 11
Re: just found out my brother has hiv
« Reply #18 on: February 28, 2009, 09:25:12 AM »

good for you.  i have been positive for 12 years. i denied being sick to some of my family.  i dont even today know if they all know.  i have lost contact with many of them over the years.  my little sister have recently been there for me as a bigsis.  god bless her. and you.   family is the best med.  just think of lilo and stich and you will see you are doing right by being there.

Ohana= means family and family means no one is left behind or forgotten.

and with that i send you my love and prayers that god see you through this and give you the strenght to be there and give strength to your bro.  god bless you both.

beauty is in all of us we need to see beyond the physicla to the soul.


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