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Author Topic: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous  (Read 2550 times)

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Offline mattdude

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Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« on: June 26, 2008, 11:42:48 PM »
I just found out my positive status two days ago. It was a massive shock because I had only ever had unsafe sex with one guy, my first boyfriend, whom I met in Thailand a year ago. He had told me a condom once broke from a boyfriend before, so he had only ever had one exposure, if he was truthful. I felt my odds were pretty good. But they weren't.

I just contacted him in Thailand and had to tell him both my status and that he needed to go get tested. It was awful. We were both bawling on the phone.
I have a great support system here with me in Canada, not to mention access to medication that can help me out. I worry so much that he doesn't. His parents already disowned him for being gay and they are just beginning to deal with that. And now this.

How much responsibility do I take for him since he was 99.5% the one who gave it to me, but I can't see him suffer like that because he didn't know either. I'm so completely lost, not only in my diagnosis, but in having to tell him that it's most likely he's also infected.

How do you ever forgive yourself/someone else for this?

Offline Dragonette

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2008, 06:05:13 AM »
Hi there... first 2 days, wow, what a shocking blur of emotion that was.

Why do you have to forgive yourself? you didn't give it to him. if anything you have to forgive him but you took a knowing risk so you can't blame him either.

maybe when you think that no one needs to forgive anyone, it will be easier. something is wrong, but it doesnt always mean someone is to blame. something is sad, but you can deal.

I can tell you that at least there is free or almost free HIV care in Thailand.
And at least (esp in BKK) he will be able to meet a lot of people like him. So he can get support. I know b/c my ex is also poz (though I do not relate my infection to him) and I was looking for resources for him, but he is not in BKK and not gay but I came across these things (you can look on "the body" for resources in Thailand and elsewhere such as global gay sites - sorry I dont remember names as I searched a while back).

My ex is getting the meds though and care and even though he is very poor he manages to take care of that. so yours should be able to as well.

Finally, he shouldnt tell his parents esp if they disowned him. at least not till he feels much better. if at all.

I don't mean to sound indifferent to his fear, shock, depression etc. I know of first hand how rough it is to be poor in Thailand but at least with regard to HIV - that is taken care of. There're guys here living in Thailand maybe they will know more things from experience, although I believe foreigners dont go to the national health system so much.

hope you feel better soon... and I trust you will
"If you keep one foot in yesterday, and one in tomorrow, you piss all over today". Betty Tacy

Offline thescot

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2008, 07:00:35 AM »

Dragonette,

I think your message may give a false impression on HIV in Thailand.
HIV care including meds in Thailand is not as you stated "almost free" and nothing closely like it.
HIV is still taboo here and to give you an example on meds, Reyataz is approx US$ 550 / month.
There is some generic meds which are more affordable but certainly not cheap for an average Thai national

Rgds

Thescot

Offline DanielMark

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2008, 07:26:00 AM »
How much responsibility do I take for him since he was 99.5% the one who gave it to me, but I can't see him suffer like that because he didn't know either. I'm so completely lost, not only in my diagnosis, but in having to tell him that it's most likely he's also infected.

How do you ever forgive yourself/someone else for this?


Hi Matt,

Sorry about what's happened but what's done is done. I see no reason to take on a burden of responsibility especially on behalf of someone else. I am sure you are still in shock about your diagnosis so I would suggest you make no major decisions until you regain your emotional footing again.

Daniel (in Ottawa)
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

Offline Dragonette

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2008, 08:27:36 AM »
Thescot

Well all I know is from my personal contact with this issue. I appreciate that mine is anecdotal evidence. However, it might be relevant to the OPs perspective.
"If you keep one foot in yesterday, and one in tomorrow, you piss all over today". Betty Tacy

Offline BT65

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  • Diagnosed + 1989
Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2008, 08:33:13 AM »
Matt, first of all welcome to the forums.  There is a really great bunch here.

I don't see why you would have to take any responsibility for your ex-boyfriend.  You're going to have enough responsibility taking care of yourself. 

As far as forgiveness... I know I forgave the person who infected me without much problem.  I realized that it was just as much my responsibility as it was his.  Back when I tested HIV+ (1989), not many people in my area had HIV (at least not known), so I don't think I even worried about forgiving myself.  I don't think I even thought about that. 

Again welcome, and I hope to hear more from you.  Good luck.
  Luv,
Betty
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline mattdude

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  • Posts: 28
Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2008, 10:20:00 AM »
thank you everyone for your kind responses.

The situation gets even worse because my parents don't even know I'm gay let alone that I'm infected. It seems they have one crisis after another in their lives to deal with and now there's this bomb to drop on them. They're all  in the medical field so their support would be nice, but they're also very religious and I know this is really going to hurt them.

I want to shrivel up, but it seems I have no right to do that since all of you have woken up to another day. That's encouraging.
Thank you all for staying so bright. I hope once this settles down and I no longer feel like throwing up with grief that this can be used to do some good.


Offline woodshere

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2008, 11:24:03 AM »
Matt,

A different take on forgiveness.  For me the forgiveness involved forgiving myself for allowing this to happen.  I came out in the 80's and was very aware of what needed to be done to protect myself and practiced safer sex for many years.  Then about 5-6 years ago for some reason I threw caution to the wind with a guy I hooked up with on line.  HIV and using condoms was never discussed we just did the deed and that was it.  It was entirely my responsibility to ask his status and to use condoms, but didn't.  So when I tested positive the thought of the other guy never entered my mind.  I made a mistake that one night and had to forgive myself for that lapse in judgement.

As far as you not telling your parents, that's a tough one.  It took me a 1 1/2 years to tell my mom.  Fortunately she knew I was gay and I didn't have to deal with that hurdle. You have only known you are positive for a few days and most certainly are allowed to "shrivel up".  Take some time to process all that has happened.  You and your HIV aren't going anywhere.  Get a grasp on your own emotions and then proceed from there.  I think that will help you better to know how to deal with your parent's.  There is no road map on how to handle what is going on your life and each person's journey while similar is very different.

Best to you,
Woods
 
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline AlanBama

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2008, 11:44:54 AM »
Hi Matt

Welcome to A.M., and the welcome is always bittersweet, because you paid a very high price to get here.

You do not have to tell this news to your family in the immediate future.  Deal with it yourself for awhile, process it....then make decisions about disclosure (to whom, when, etc).

Some of us in the Long Term Survivors Forum have reached an 'unscientific' conclusion that forgiving one's self is critical with HIV.   Accept that it was your responsibility, and no one else's, that you became positive.   Forgive yourself, and begin to move forward with your life.   I hope your friend can find the help and resources he needs to care for himself.

hugs,
Alan
"Remember my sentimental friend that a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others." - The Wizard of Oz

Offline mattdude

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2008, 01:38:27 PM »
Thank you so much Woods, Alan, and everyone else.

Truthfully, my whole outlook changes when I realize I don't have to tell my family quite yet. I'd rather be informed about my counts first, as well as the prospective treatments before freaking them out with "the news." The more composed I am about it, the more I'll be able to calm their fears.

How crazy this all is, but what better people it makes of us. At least I hope so.

Thanks for everyone on this forum for being there and taking the time to write.
Matt

Offline water duck

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2008, 05:55:21 PM »
In thailand, if you are a foreigner and get into a accident, for eg a road one, it does not matter if you are in the right or wrong, you pay, because you are the foreigner, that equals to the fact you are richer.  It does not matter what, they only want your money, this is what i was told by a white european who had lived there for twenty years. I know i will shake afew feathers, but ......................

Now Matt, i want you to be selfish and just think about yourself for a moment !!
AND i like to ask you have you FORGIVEN yourself yet ??

Wd

Offline SoSadTooBad

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  • Posts: 248
Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2008, 09:32:46 PM »
matt - my family does not know I am gay or positive.  there is no rush to let either cat out of the bag until you are comfortable.  I was diagnosed about 2 years ago, and I am finally to the point where it does not dominate my every thought. 

take your time, really - one day at a time.  it will get better for you, but don't force anything right now...

hang in there.

Offline Dragonette

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2008, 06:46:32 AM »
I emailed my ex. He said he goes to get his medicine 1xmonth at the clinic. He gets 3 types of generic (he didn't say generic just made in Thailand but I assume so) pills, he doesn't even know their names because they give them in paper bags. It costs him btw 500-700 Baht depending if he gets blood drawn or not. 700 Baht is currently 20 US$. His salary is 178 US$ (6,000 Bhat)...
"If you keep one foot in yesterday, and one in tomorrow, you piss all over today". Betty Tacy

Offline thescot

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2008, 07:15:52 AM »

Firstly i don't want to get into any slagging match all i want to do is state facts so people don't get the wrong idea of Thailand. I am not a Thai national, lived here for 14 years and know a few things about the place.

Water duck ..... wise up!!!! and stop quoting white europeans coz it's absolutely not true.

I currently take a generic made in Thailand (3TC) and they cost over $50/month but unfortunely they don't come in a paper bag?

Offline water duck

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2008, 08:20:33 AM »
The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance - it is the illusion of knowledge.
Daniel J. Boorstin

sweetheart,

if i 'wise up ' ..............some more ..................
i would be a genius  ::)


Offline Dragonette

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    • NotPerfectAtAll
Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2008, 11:06:32 AM »
Firstly i don't want to get into any slagging match all i want to do is state facts so people don't get the wrong idea of Thailand. I am not a Thai national, lived here for 14 years and know a few things about the place.

I currently take a generic made in Thailand (3TC) and they cost over $50/month but unfortunely they don't come in a paper bag?

Hi there,

I am really not disputing you. I understand you go to one of the best ID docs in Thailand and are currently based in Pattaya. That is a different lifestyle, and probabaly you get different prices as well as well as much better care.

My ex has just come out of a stomach surgery, they removed a tumor in a 3 hour surgery, he stayed at the hospital for over a week (can't remember the exact # of days). It cost less than 25,000 Baht (- less than 800$) including the stay in a private (non government) hospital: the BKK-Trat hospital. He doesn't have insurance btw so this was the full price out of pocket.

The paper bag is not the original packaging, I assume the clinic gets the meds and dispenses them in bags. I have seen that in Thailand before with antiobiotics and such.

I put this info out here so the OP will have an idea of what a Thai might hope to get, I have also heard that for the very poor, in the North and such, there are schemes that distribute meds for free.
 I read that online re accessability I don't actually know anyone taking meds for free though I believe there is a free HIV clinic in Klong Toei and a temple in Lopburi that act as free care centers.

http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/EASTASIAPACIFICEXT/EXTEAPREGTOPHEANUT/EXTEAPREGTOPHIVAIDS/0,,contentMDK:21024836~menuPK:503163~pagePK:34004173~piPK:34003707~theSitePK:503157,00.html

Quote: Thailand has shown strong commitment to providing comprehensive care and support to people living with HIV/AIDS, but it is only recently that it has been able to provide ART to large numbers of people with symptomatic HIV, thanks to a affordable domestically- produced triple-drug combination, called GPO-vir (stavudine + lamivudine + nevirapine), which costs about US$30 per month. This has allowed the Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) to roll out a large-scale campaign to provide triple-drug ART as standard care.Cosider that the 30$/month regimen mentioned in this report from 2006 is probabaly the same amount in Baht worth 20 today, due to the crash of the dollar.

But 50/month is also cheap - I think my meds here cost around 2,000 Euro/month and they are not even new meds
« Last Edit: June 28, 2008, 11:17:55 AM by Dragonette »
"If you keep one foot in yesterday, and one in tomorrow, you piss all over today". Betty Tacy

Offline komnaes

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Re: Just had to tell Thai ex-boyfriend...Horrendous
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2008, 11:48:07 AM »
Mattdude, IMHO you have done the right thing of contacting him - the sooner he finds out the sooner he can find the medical and other supports he will need. It was also a brave thing, so give yourself some credits. Now, you need to focus on yourself. We have all been there - the first few weeks or even months are the most difficult. Some people move on quicker, and it seems you're in for a less bumpy ride because of your have good support systems. But it still won't be easy. As for your ex, don't let that burden you more than you need to take it up on yourself. You guys are not collected the way you used to.

The health care system is not perfect in Thailand but I know enough to comment that they are already much much much better than all Southeast Asia countries (yes, including Singapore!). It's not outrageously expensive, especially for Thai nationals, and they have some of the world most experienced doctors in both the private and government system. Granted, homosexuality and HIV are still a taboo, despite the rather misrepresented image of openness (the vibrant sex industry and gay scene). If he does find out he's HIV+, you should encourage him to find all the supports he needs. The important thing is not to give up. It doesn't have to be an impossible burden on one's finance and emotional well-being, which is something I cannot say for some developing countries in Asia.

So lets not worry about things that have not happened yet. He will need to deal with it, in his own ways, and if it's within your ability, give him love and supports when you're able to.

Hugs, Shaun
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

 


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