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Author Topic: ok, so i am poz...  (Read 4597 times)

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Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
ok, so i am poz...
« on: June 22, 2010, 03:31:37 PM »
Hi, I am thinking I might start posting on here so I really just introducing myself.

I am 35 years old and just found out i was positive.  Quite a revelation as I am sure you all know.  I made a mistake with someone and now I am paying for it.  Luckily, due to the new drugs I am probably not paying as high a price as many have in the past.  It is what it is.

I was kinda dumb in how I found out.  I was having these odd skin conditions for about 6 months, itchy dry spots and constant, severe, dry eye.  I never had any of this before so for a while I was thinking maybe it is HIV.  I was right...although after seeing my new Dr. these symptoms are probably not related.  In any case, the stupid part...I found out through a home test and was told I was positive by a young girl with a thick accent over the phone.  It was icky...i remember pacing around having these odd flashes of heat...I imagine that is what menopause feels like, ha ha.

So, I hope other people don't do that.  Since then I have seen a Dr. who has a great deal of experience, is sweet, and didn't make me feel judged.  At least that was a good experience.  My t-cells were over 1000 but my viral load was 50000.  So I am good in one department but kinda creeping towards not so good in the other.  I know there is more to those numbers after reading the forums a bit but I don't know them...sorry.

I told 4 friends, close friends, none of them even gay.  They have been wonderful and, honestly, I have never really had luck with gay friendships...I wish that to change.

Right now I feel a little overwhelmed and it is not even the HIV thing.  I have a parent diagnosed with cancer and a brother just put in prison.  All icky...very icky, especially since I have to be the strong one and am determined not to add more misery to my family by telling them.  It seems plausible that I will make it to my 70s based on all the articles I am encountering which means I will outlive my parents, that is what is driving the decision...of course there is a little bit of the shame factor.

I am going to go to work now and will post more later.  I think the general theme of my post is can I meet someone and have a normal life interrupted only by blood tests every 3 months and pill popping every morning?  I don't know how to meet other positive men.  I don't really feel like i know much of anything anymore.  I am emotionally OK but back where I began...a little lonely, a little unorganized...and a little bit of a mess...I just thought that it might be easier somehow that poz men might be sweeter the neg men and more relationship oriented.  I am finding it not to be the case.

Help me out a little...I know the post sounds stupid in alot of ways.  I will be back with more.

Offline veritas

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,410
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2010, 03:58:52 PM »

Hey guy,

Bummer about your status, glad you found us.

Your post isn't stupid. Your going through emotions that affected all of us when we found out. It's a roller coaster ride. However, you seem to be hanging in.
First thing to do is read the lessons on Aidsmeds,  learn all you can about our disease so you will feel comfortable when you get your labs and understand what they mean. By the way your numbers are good. You did not give us your cd4% which is a pretty good indicator of your immune health, but with a 1000 cd4s there's more than enough time to figure that out. Your doc will probably go over your numbers. Also, I'm sure he is ordering a phenotype and genotype to see if your virus has any mutations.
It's great you already have a support system (straight even) lol. Well, you also have many gay poz friends here. Ask any questions, here, someone usually has the answer.
There is no shame in your disease. When the time and circumstances are right, your family can be very helpful. You'll make it to 70, just be diligent when you start medications.

By the way, yes you can meet someone!


Welcome aboard,

v

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2010, 07:34:26 PM »
Welcome to the forums.  I think you will find HIV doesn't change everything the way you might fear when you first find out.

Like you, I found out over the phone... I mean I had a good idea... but my conclusive, "YOU ARE POZ" moment was over the phone a few days before Christmas talking to an operator for a website that offered HIV testing (along with everything else).  It was a "okay, your results  are poz, merry christmas, and here are the numbers to a few places.  Would you like us to fax it to you?"  Not exactly what I would call warm, caring, or compassionate.  So I can totally relate to your conversation... "Yez, we have herez dat you are poz......."

Like you I thought, ok, well at least dating will be easier.  Um, yea and the island of misfit toys is a good place.  What I realized is that being poz has it's own set of issues.  That's not to say that there aren't nice, smart, poz guys..... but they sure are hard to find.  I think gay dating in general is alot like shopping scratch and dent for a major appliance.  Everyone has something wrong with them and they aren't likely to advertise it much beyond the obvious in our cases.  I have no magic elixir or simple answer....

What I can tell you is that HIV has caused me to appreciate what is important and work on what matters the most to me each day.  I've learned to accept and love myself which is more important then you can imagine if you have any self-esteem issues (and almost everyone does).  Do what you enjoy and don't worry about becoming Mr. Gay 2011 (or 2010).  Chances are really good that if you do what you enjoy you'll meet someone else who likes what you do and you'll click.  We all tend to be more similar then you think.....
Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2010, 10:09:43 PM »
Thanks guys for replying.  I have an appointment comming up with my Dr., in fact I have to get some blood drawn in the next few days.  I wish I could have all that done in one place. Oh well.  Anyway, I will have him explain the % stuff and yea, I know he mentioned the genotype things the first visit.  I was only focused on one thing at the time.  How long can I expect to live and related to that, can I keep it a secret from my mother and father, they have too much on their plate.  This time going in it will be all about me.  So selfish, hehe.

Ok, I guess it is nice to hear that someone else had the same notion about poz guys and dating that I had.  Not so good to hear it confirmed that it probably isn't correct.  What do we think about those dating sites?  I mean I am 20 min outside NYC, there are poz men out there...but the websites that I am seeing are for sex and all I get asked is if i party and can they cum in me.  Its annoying!  I want to have sex and enjoy it, yea.  But I never partied and the only reason I ended up positive was because I was so desperatly looking for someone to fall in love with.  I mean I can usually have better orgasms all by myself, haha.

I found out today from my insurance company that I can see a therapist.  I don't really need a psychoanalyst, just a sounding board and a life coach rolled into one.  I think its a good idea for me.  I can't expect my friends to always be available nor do i want to talk only about me.  Either way, I have so much to do I feel like I am standing in front of a big mess, like that show Hoarders, and I dont know which piece of garbage to pick up first!  I have to quit smoking, start exercising, not get depressed so I can maintain my relationships, move up in my career so I have better insurance, work out some kind of financial savings plan in preparation for the event that I can't work...bleh too much.

The funny thing is that everyone has to do all those things.  I never took it seriously enough, now I have to and it scares the shit out of me.  Wish me luck!  :o)

Offline WillyWump

  • Member
  • Posts: 7,175
  • your ramblings bore Yamaguchi Kitteh
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2010, 10:31:55 PM »
Hi there NN,

Sounds like you got alot on your plate with your mother, brother, new diagnosis, etc... I can understand your desire to have someone in your life ( I have that desire as well), but what's the rush? You know it took me awhile to settle into my diagnosis, like a year, and I shudder to think what might have happened had I started a relationship during those early days, for me it seems it would be just more stress on top of more stress :)

I dont know, it's just my humble opinion that you might need to address your diagnosis first before you take on a relationship. By "Address" I mean are you comfortable with yourself? Are you comfortable with starting meds at some point? are you comfortably knowledgable about the disease? I think once you address these and a multitude of other things you might be better equipped to find and enter into a beneficial relationship.

In the meantime, think of the Forums here as your "partner" (although the sex wouldnt be as good). a relationship will come in due time :)

I may be totally off base with my thoughts, maybe you are truly in a place to begin a relationship but it's just something to think about.

Hugs
-Will
POZ since '08

Last Labs-
6/3/14 CD4- 736, UD 34%
6/25/13 CD4- 1036, UD,
2/4/13, CD4 - 489, UD, 28%

Current Meds: Prezista/Epzicom/ Norvir
.

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,656
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2010, 10:59:05 PM »
How long can I expect to live and related to that, can I keep it a secret from my mother and father, they have too much on their plate.  This time going in it will be all about me.  So selfish, hehe.

I'm sorry that you are poz, but glad you found your way here. I included a few of your comments and I wish to leave you some food for thought. While I understand your wanting to spare your parents, I urge you to not be hasty in deciding to never tell your parents about your HIV. Being a parent, I can tell you that we are stronger than you will ever know and one thing that can break our heart, is to be shut out, when one of our children needs us most.

Take your time deciding on who you will tell, but let me leave you with this. Exactly how would you feel, if someone very close to you, were to exclude you, when they needed you most, because they decided for you, that you could not handle the news? I am not saying you must tell your parents, but please do not second guess them, nor deprive them of their primary role in life... being your parents.

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2010, 12:35:48 AM »
I totally agree about the parents thing.  They would adjust and they would help if they could.  The problem is...they can't.  I don't need their emotional support for this issue....OK, perhaps that is an exaggeration...I don't need their emotional support for this issue enough to cause them additional misery.  I am not shutting them out though.  I see them very regularly.  They would probably be very hurt if they found out I was going through this and didn't share.  Hopefully that won't happen.  I won't inform them unless it is going to effect my life enough to effect theirs.

As far as finding a partner.  Well, I don't know.  Will I ever really come to grips with this diagnosis?  Seriously, when will I know I have absorbed and integrated it into my life?  I feel happy now despite finding out 5 months ago.  I am done crying and I am certainly done whining about it.  I trust my Dr. and adore his nurse.  I am slowly educating myself about the disease so I can make the decision that my Dr. is putting clearly on my shoulders...wait till my t-cells drop or start now while they are high.  I have read a number of different articles that think one way is better then the other.  I don't know...and I don't know that really knowing makes that much of a difference.  I am pretty sure I won't be able to remain emotionally stable if i choose not to go on the meds...to go in every 3 months and, eventually, watch the bad number go up and the good number go down. 

Since I didn't contribute to the eradication of the disease and made the mistake of having unprotected sex I would like to contribute to its eradication by getting my viral load undetectable...one of the articles I read was talking about how if drugs were started early then the potential of spreading the disease drops dramatically...from a societal perspective anyway, not a personal one...that happens by not putting people at risk of course.  I also read a number of articles exploring how the new drugs are a great deal safer and the side effects are more ma nagable.  I think I already made my decision to be honest.  Only time will tell if it will be the right one.

I am finding out that all of the things positive people have to worry about are the same things everyone else has to worry about. Big epiphany, really, I never said I was bright...ha ha.  The difference seems to be the intensity and or urgency of the worry.  Honestly, I am 35 years old...I am able to love and be loved and have been dating.  I don't really want to say now that I have this I need to put anything and everything on hold so that I can come to terms with my diagnosis.  I spent way too long living in my head and not in my body.  In some ways, if i handle this right, it can be a blessing, albeit a very well disguised one.  I am taking things more seriously now...but still attempting to hold onto a little of the relaxed me I was before.  I will ask for help when I need it and we will see how it all ends up.

But, yea, I am ready to date.  I don't think its all that big a deal...I don't want a rellat ionship in a box...just a few dates with poz men who are around my age and don't expect to party all night long.  I just need to figure out how to find them.  If I am wrong...whats the big deal anyway...someone won't fall in love with me...well..I am there now, he he.

Thanks again for your replies.  Talking this through is really helping me a great deal...I hope I don't come off as if I am not listening even though I am not agreeing...you all have a much better grip on this diagnosis then I do...you are making me think....alot.

Offline WillyWump

  • Member
  • Posts: 7,175
  • your ramblings bore Yamaguchi Kitteh
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2010, 03:39:06 PM »

But, yea, I am ready to date.  I don't think its all that big a deal...I don't want a rellat ionship in a box...just a few dates with poz men who are around my age and don't expect to party all night long.  I just need to figure out how to find them.  If I am wrong...whats the big deal anyway...someone won't fall in love with me...well..I am there now, he he.



Oh definately! Get out there and date! I think I took your post wrong in that I thought you wanted a partner (long term commitment) NOW.

Sounds like you actually have a pretty good grasp on of everything, hence you are that much ahead of the HIv game. I think you'll do fine, and yes, you actually do become "used to" HIV :)

Good luck
-Will
POZ since '08

Last Labs-
6/3/14 CD4- 736, UD 34%
6/25/13 CD4- 1036, UD,
2/4/13, CD4 - 489, UD, 28%

Current Meds: Prezista/Epzicom/ Norvir
.

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2010, 06:54:37 PM »
Thanks guys for replying.  I have an appointment comming up with my Dr., in fact I have to get some blood drawn in the next few days.  I wish I could have all that done in one place. Oh well.  Anyway, I will have him explain the % stuff and yea, I know he mentioned the genotype things the first visit.  I was only focused on one thing at the time.  How long can I expect to live and related to that, can I keep it a secret from my mother and father, they have too much on their plate.  This time going in it will be all about me.  So selfish, hehe.

Ok, I guess it is nice to hear that someone else had the same notion about poz guys and dating that I had.  Not so good to hear it confirmed that it probably isn't correct.  What do we think about those dating sites?  I mean I am 20 min outside NYC, there are poz men out there...but the websites that I am seeing are for sex and all I get asked is if i party and can they cum in me.  Its annoying!  I want to have sex and enjoy it, yea.  But I never partied and the only reason I ended up positive was because I was so desperatly looking for someone to fall in love with.  I mean I can usually have better orgasms all by myself, haha.

I found out today from my insurance company that I can see a therapist.  I don't really need a psychoanalyst, just a sounding board and a life coach rolled into one.  I think its a good idea for me.  I can't expect my friends to always be available nor do i want to talk only about me.  Either way, I have so much to do I feel like I am standing in front of a big mess, like that show Hoarders, and I dont know which piece of garbage to pick up first!  I have to quit smoking, start exercising, not get depressed so I can maintain my relationships, move up in my career so I have better insurance, work out some kind of financial savings plan in preparation for the event that I can't work...bleh too much.

The funny thing is that everyone has to do all those things.  I never took it seriously enough, now I have to and it scares the shit out of me.  Wish me luck!  :o)

I don't see anyone touching some of your more important questions:
- Lilfe expentancy for newly diagnosed patients in the US is 44 years as of a year ago.  So the answer is you should expect to live a fairly normal life.  This depends on good overall health, but if you aren't partying and being a lush that's a good start.  I believe you are roughly my age and our "predicted life expectancy" was around 85 or so.... Not bad... but still room for improvement.

- It's okay to be afraid, angry, etc.  You are doing the right thing by seeking out a counselor to talk to.  A good counselor will help you through the decisions and let you make them.  Every single person on here has been angry, mad, depressed etc at one point in their life with HIV.

- There are good guys out there..... following your dick isn't the best way to find them....  although there is nothing wrong with sex for the sake of sex.  And hey, if you like sex you are likely to find other guys who like sex and ... you never know.  I think I have the best chance of meeting mr. right by doing what I enjoy. 

- The answer to your hoarders statement.  You eat a whale one forkful at a time.  Don't stare at the forest while holding a handsaw... it's intimidating.  Stare at a single tree and you can see the possibilities and the tree becomes terrified.

- As with all challenges.  Take a few breaths, relax, think about your options, and implement the option that makes the most sense.  Evaluate your progress and change the plan if you don't like the results. 

- HIV is sort of like doing electrical work.  It imposes some rules, it's not overly forgiving for violating them, but it's not that hard to live with in the scheme of things. 

-You and I are very lucky to be diagnosed now.  I have tremendous respect for those who have lived 20, 25, and 30 years.  We have well developed, readily accessible drugs.  While they aren't a cure, they go a long ways towards making HIV chronic.  I remember the obits that were always in the gay papers.  I remember people who were diagnosed with HIV and told to live out their fantasy because in a few years they would be dead.  Thankfully, I don't see very many HIV related obituaries, although one is too many and I've seen a few in the last year.  I also know that with the right diet, proper exercise, and meds, you and I will live much longer with fewer side affects.

- As for parents.... like you, mine have enough on their plate so I've elected to keep my HIV to me.  When I think they need to know I'll let them know.  For now I prefer to be me, not Me(HIV).  Now, on the flip side it's nice to be loved so don't undervalue that.  You are going to find out who the friends and acquaintenances are.  The friends stick with you... the others don't.  Just realize that if someone has a problem with your HIV it's *their* problem, not yours.

- Finally, when you do talk to your counselor be sure to discuss the person who you got HIV from.  Don't get hung up on the blame game, but don't bury the seed because the hate that grows isn't the type of thing you need in your emotional garden.  Pull the weed while it is small and let something better take it's place.  We all have to come to terms with how we became positive.

-Brian

P.S. keep us updated and don't hesitate to post questions... there are 11,982 (as of today) members on here and someone is sure to have ideas that can help with issues you might face.
Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2010, 09:53:58 PM »
Brian, hah, I think I have a crush on you, thanks for the post.  In fact thanks to all of you.  I felt ok before but I think I will definitly use this site as a resource if I am having difficulty in the future. 

Offline Hellraiser

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,136
  • Semi-misanthropic
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2010, 09:59:43 PM »
Brian, hah, I think I have a crush on you, thanks for the post.  In fact thanks to all of you.  I felt ok before but I think I will definitly use this site as a resource if I am having difficulty in the future. 

What the others were saying before is everyone needs some time to adjust and everyone handles it differently.  You seem to be diving in which can be good and bad, it's a matter of time to know if you're actually processing all of the new information, but you seem to be in a good state of mind right now so that's good news.

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2010, 02:05:14 AM »
well...i kinda wish i had more of an emotional reaction.  i think it is just i had a few weeks between when i got the results over the phone and when i saw my dr for the first time.  i spent that time mulling over awful dreams i was having.  thinking of how badly i needed to clean my apartment just in case they found me dead in it. who i should give my cat to.  in other words how i was going to handle getting sick and dying, hopefully with a little grace.

after i met my dr and his nurse i was given such a different picture that i was elated.  that feeling lasted maybe 2 months.  it also coincided with my friends house getting flooded so i was helping other people.  that gave me a high like i can't tell you.  doing something good for someone and also finding out you aren't going to die in a few years can really send the endorphins rushing.

anyway, that elation ended.  i got scared that i wasn't going to get that feeling back.  and i haven't, but it's actually OK.  i am coming to grips with things.  i made my life alot more difficult with a stupid mistake.  i also, inadvertently, may have given myself the kick in the ass i needed to do something with said life.  so, i am looking at the silver lining without experiencing the bad things that may eventually happen to me.  maybe i am being unrealistic now...but i am coping. 

i hope it works...i hope i can make the best out of this situation.  i am going to see a therapist to help me, so maybe he will tell me i am secretly a mess and i am blocking it all off.  i hope not, i sure like being happy.

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2010, 06:22:28 AM »
Brian, hah, I think I have a crush on you, thanks for the post.  In fact thanks to all of you.  I felt ok before but I think I will definitly use this site as a resource if I am having difficulty in the future. 

 ;D  thank you.  I'm more complicated then a 15,000 piece jigsaw puzzle... but the picture on the box is really pretty.  :)  I bite.  I'm difficult to take out to social environments because I'm blunt.  I prefer Home Depot to Macy's any day for any reason.  I'd rather go hiking than to a pool party.  I'm not a roll of Charmin, I don't take shit from anyone.

Anyhow.... I really do appreciate the compliment. 
Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2010, 06:31:51 AM »
well...i kinda wish i had more of an emotional reaction.  i think it is just i had a few weeks between when i got the results over the phone and when i saw my dr for the first time.  i spent that time mulling over awful dreams i was having.  thinking of how badly i needed to clean my apartment just in case they found me dead in it. who i should give my cat to.  in other words how i was going to handle getting sick and dying, hopefully with a little grace.

after i met my dr and his nurse i was given such a different picture that i was elated.  that feeling lasted maybe 2 months.  it also coincided with my friends house getting flooded so i was helping other people.  that gave me a high like i can't tell you.  doing something good for someone and also finding out you aren't going to die in a few years can really send the endorphins rushing.

anyway, that elation ended.  i got scared that i wasn't going to get that feeling back.  and i haven't, but it's actually OK.  i am coming to grips with things.  i made my life alot more difficult with a stupid mistake.  i also, inadvertently, may have given myself the kick in the ass i needed to do something with said life.  so, i am looking at the silver lining without experiencing the bad things that may eventually happen to me.  maybe i am being unrealistic now...but i am coping. 

i hope it works...i hope i can make the best out of this situation.  i am going to see a therapist to help me, so maybe he will tell me i am secretly a mess and i am blocking it all off.  i hope not, i sure like being happy.

I think you are processing it.... maybe not having a meltdown.... but everyone adjusts in their own way.  Hellraiser is very right and he also just got to the club.  At one extreme, some people go to a map and look for a river named de-nile.  (Hint: It's not in Egypt baby!)  At the other extreme, some people use HIV as a catalyst to change their lives.  I personally consider myself to be in the catalyst group. 

I have had enough Sex Ed and Condom University to write a book...... from 9th grade in 1987 on I heard about it non-stop.... so there is no reason I should have become poz.  However, becoming poz was the catalyst that made me stop and prioritize what was important.  My focus shifted from "work my ass off and retire in 40 years" to "work hard, play harder, make today special because there might not be a tomorrow."  I didn't have health insurance (long story) and was avoiding the dentist and doctors office because of it.  HIV changed that.  I have my dental health under control, I've developed a new appreciation for Nitrous Oxide as a charm to make the Dentist more tolerable.  I also get regular checkups and have dealt with things like blood pressure which otherwise would have gone unchecked and probably been a much bigger issue.  So in the end I've made the best of it and I think it's better. 

Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2010, 01:03:02 PM »
hehe, i meant more that i had a crush on you because of what you wrote...

but i am sure you are pretty.  :o)

Offline AaronbytheC

  • Member
  • Posts: 116
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2010, 04:57:33 PM »
In any case, the stupid part...I found out through a home test and was told I was positive by a young girl with a thick accent over the phone.  It was icky...i remember pacing around having these odd flashes of heat...I imagine that is what menopause feels like, ha ha.


I must have talked to her replacement just three weeks ago... 
The woman sounded like a character out of the movie "Fargo"  "doncha know"  ;D 
After asking for my code number she tells me, "oh ya looks like that came back positive, but you should probably get a second opinion...  Is there anything else I can help you with?" 
Seriously, what do you say to that...  "Um, no...  Have a nice day"   :o
04/2012 CD4 721 / 29% / VL UD
02/2011 UNDETECTABLE!
12/2010 CD4 587 / 24% / VL 210
11/2010 Started Atripla
10/2010 CD4 420 / 18% / VL 13,500
09/2010 CD4 541 / 17% / VL 10,500
08/2010 CD4 498 / 18% / VL Not Taken
07/2010 CD4 307 / 18% / VL 9,500
06/2010 Confirmed Poz
03/2010 Infected
06/2009 Neg

Offline Realist

  • Member
  • Posts: 162
    • NotDownNotOut's Blog
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2010, 05:06:15 PM »
I got mine the same way in February (it's a relatively new concept in the UK). Don't recommend it.

Thing is, I should have been on the floor inconsolable really but determined as ever to get the upper hand as I am, I couldn't help asking if there was a refund if you were poz.

Click. dial tone. ;D ;D
23/02/10 Tests confirmed
25/02/10 13100 220 24%
12/03/10 19800 372 19%
26/03/10 Atripla
30/04/10 58 286 23%
28/05/10 45 222 21%
25/06/10 UD 301 23%
24/09/10 UD 283 22%
01/12/10 UD 319 23%
11/03/11 UD 293 28%
10/06/11 UD 423 24%
23/08/11 UD 389 26%
28/02/11 UD 315 34%

I blogged it all http://notdownnotout.blogspot.com

Offline nnjguy

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  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #17 on: June 25, 2010, 11:12:13 PM »
Ok, so things are starting to set in as I begin to make plans for myself so I can better acclimate to a rigid drug regimine.  I am having my first "real" concern.

Money and the cost of perscribed medications.  Honestly, it was this site that really made me nervous about it.  My feeling is that I want to begin meds as soon as possible.  To that end I am making sure my sleep schedule is a little more regimented.  I have spoken with one of my friends and if I take a week off of work she will be there with me in case I have any bizarre reactions.  From people's descriptions of their first week on meds I thought it wise.  I also thought it wise to start in the morning so that I am ensured that I can use my ID Dr. as a resource as opposed to an ER.  So far I am OK.

Now I come to the cost.  Last year I made over $30,000.  Not much, at most 40,000 with tips.  This year, with the economy, it is less, I don't know exactly how much less, but less.  From what I am reading if I make over 30,000 I am not eligable for assistance.  But not being far over I am not in a position to afford 12,000 a year without not paying rent, car insurance, gas, and lets not forget that I have to eat.  I didn't want to rely on assistance for the entirety of my life so my plan was to get my shit together and get a second major (not too much of an investment here since I have a degree) in more viable field.  It's logical, a goal, something to look forward to, a good thing in many ways.  But now I am wondering, if I start a new position and it doesn't pay off significantly untill I invest more time what will I do to pay for meds.  I am freaking out now.  Not about the disease, not about death, not about social seclusion but about paying for my meds.

I know everyone must go through this so I am sorry if I sound like a crybaby.  But where do I turn?  Is my information correct?  Does the system really just let people die if they are on the cusp of 30,000?  Am I freaking out over nothing?  I want to use the diagnosis as an impetus to get my shit together in a way that I haven't before.  Is this putting an unbreakable wall in my way?

I didn't freak out about this before because when I first saw my ID Dr. He and his nurse assured me that there were programs that would help me.  Do they know something you don't?  I am now a little scared.  If I am totally fucked this puts a spin on things I am not prepared for.  Write back please.

Offline nnjguy

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  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #18 on: June 25, 2010, 11:30:00 PM »
By the way, just so I am not all doom and gloom in my post I spoke to 3 nice guys recently and have a date planned with one of them.  Now, I will admit, 2 of them have an aura about them that seems to be...shall we say cock-centered, but they aren't the ones that I have the date with.  It's a crying shame both of them were hot enough for me to...well, let's just leave it at they were hot. 

Anyway, at least if I sort through the rest of the heap I know I can meet someone and give a shot to dating.  It's a small comfort, but a small one is better then none...well, with most things.

God, I am snarky tonight, haha.

Offline leatherman

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  • Posts: 6,183
  • Google and HIV meds are Your Friends
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2010, 12:24:21 AM »
Now I come to the cost.  Last year I made over $30,000.  Not much, at most 40,000 with tips.  This year, with the economy, it is less, I don't know exactly how much less, but less.  From what I am reading if I make over 30,000 I am not eligable for assistance.  But not being far over I am not in a position to afford 12,000 a year without not paying rent, car insurance, gas, and lets not forget that I have to eat.  I didn't want to rely on assistance for the entirety of my life
scenarios just like yours are why millions of Americans purchase health insurance - with a drug plan ;)
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline nnjguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2010, 12:37:34 AM »
ok, so...in other words, that is where i turn?  a different insurance plan?  if that is the answer then that is ok.  not wonderful since I am sure that it isn't cheap...but it is an option.  I have an appointment with my ID Dr. soon.  My numbers also seem to indicate that I have some time, hopefully. 

I am woefully uneducated about insurance plans.  It isn't anything I have ever had to think about.  I know how to educate myself about the disease and am doing so in spades through resources like these and my Dr.  I don't know where to go to make a more informed decision about health insurance.

Can anyone give me advise, suggestions?

This answer alone has just alleviated some anxiety.  I may sound stupid but I hadn't even considered this as an option.  I am such an idiot. 

Thanks for the help yet again. 

Offline ruralguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 141
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #21 on: June 29, 2010, 09:58:24 AM »
What state are you in?  There are different programs in state.  You doc/nurse team should be able to point you to people who can help you sort this out.  And the drug companies themsleves have programs.
tested positive June 19, 2009
7/3/09 vrl 9000 cd4 - 300
8/14/09 cd4 - 350, 20%
started Atripla 9/14/09
10/5/09 vrl undetectable, WOW so fast!
12/28/09 vrl undetectable, CD4 - 615  27% cholesterol down, kidney function normal
4/26/10 vrl undetectable, CD4-600, kidney and liver numbers normal
9/9/10 vrl undetectable, CD4-685
1/3/11 vrl undetectable, CD4-700
all 2011 and Jan 2012 visits vrl undetectable CD4 ranged from 715-645
5/7/2012  vrl undetectable, CD4-615, all liver, kidney, lipids, heart functions, etc normal


On Atripla:  "Your mileage may vary"

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #22 on: July 04, 2010, 09:22:08 AM »
By the way, just so I am not all doom and gloom in my post I spoke to 3 nice guys recently and have a date planned with one of them.  Now, I will admit, 2 of them have an aura about them that seems to be...shall we say cock-centered, but they aren't the ones that I have the date with.  It's a crying shame both of them were hot enough for me to...well, let's just leave it at they were hot. 

Anyway, at least if I sort through the rest of the heap I know I can meet someone and give a shot to dating.  It's a small comfort, but a small one is better then none...well, with most things.

God, I am snarky tonight, haha.

so how did the date go?  there is nothing wrong with going out on a sex-date.  Dinner and makeing a movie instead of watching one.   :o

Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline hotpuppy

  • Member
  • Posts: 555
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #23 on: July 04, 2010, 09:27:52 AM »
ok, so...in other words, that is where i turn?  a different insurance plan?  if that is the answer then that is ok.  not wonderful since I am sure that it isn't cheap...but it is an option.  I have an appointment with my ID Dr. soon.  My numbers also seem to indicate that I have some time, hopefully. 

I am woefully uneducated about insurance plans.  It isn't anything I have ever had to think about.  I know how to educate myself about the disease and am doing so in spades through resources like these and my Dr.  I don't know where to go to make a more informed decision about health insurance.

Can anyone give me advise, suggestions?

This answer alone has just alleviated some anxiety.  I may sound stupid but I hadn't even considered this as an option.  I am such an idiot. 

Thanks for the help yet again. 

i'm a bit perplexed by this post.  I looked back and you do have insurance.  So first things first, hang on to it.  It's more important now and has a much higher value to you.  :)

Most insurance is pretty good, and my bet is you have employer provided insurance.  You will want to pay close attention to plan options if you have them and make sure you are on the plan that makes sense for you.  Companies have an "open enrollment" period where you can switch plans each year.
Don't obsess over the wrong things.  Life isn't about your numbers, it isn't about this forum, it isn't about someone's opinion.  It's about getting out there and enjoying it.   I am a person with HIV - not the other way around.

Offline hjeffs

  • Member
  • Posts: 65
Re: ok, so i am poz...
« Reply #24 on: July 04, 2010, 11:23:27 AM »
Take it all in and BREATHE. Slow down and breathe. Fill your life with life. You have a right to everything you feel, and good for you. just remember to experience what you have and slow down to experience it all in a good perspective. You should not be judged and don't let anyone judge you. Care for yourself in many ways. This is a time of awareness for your self Care of all kinds. Be kind to yourself and all you are. Embrace yourself and do some forgiveness work with yourself. Life is all around us and unfortunately HIV+ is part of life that I have experienced but my life continues in the perspective that I nurture it to have. Be good to yourself.
I am a parent and have unconditional love for my children and would only like to have the opportunity to support them in whatever they are facing, good or difficult. You know what to do best with your parents and when to do it.

Remember to breathe, care for yourself and no action is sometimes the best action you can make for yourself until you are certain you know inside what you need to do next. You have much life in front of you, approach it like an adventure, feel it all and it is all good.
Jeff

 


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