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Author Topic: Please help me  (Read 3600 times)

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Offline Artemis

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Please help me
« on: September 05, 2011, 12:48:14 PM »
Hey guys, I really need some people with knowledge on the subject to help me out, I've never been as anxious to an answer to any question in my life as this one and I'm not sure if you guys can help me with it but i'm just gonna throw it out there. Thing is I am terrified at the idea of getting tested, have been for the past 4 years and 1 month, I had at least a urine test 4 years ago that came back negative, I didn't get the blood test done, I think, because the doctor said I most likely wasn't infected by HIV but he seemed like sort of a lunatic so I didn't really trust him then and I don't trust him now, I just didn't request a blood test since I was really scared and just wanted to think I was okay.

So here's what happened anyway, 4 years ago I was on vacation in Cuba, I know Cuba has one of the best healthcare system in the world but still some people do have HV over there, anyway, I was on the beach and I met this chick who I didn't even know was a sex worker, one thing led to another and I'm in this shabby little room having sex with her, I had a condom the whole time but I'm scared something happened to it, when I pulled out it was sort of pulled up, even though I'm pretty sure the head was still covered, I'm scared it might have broken or something because when I was done I noticed this small red bump right on my urethra, it went away after 2 or 3 hours I don't know what it was.
Then a few days later I had sex with this other chick who actually never asked for money, I think she wanted me to marry her, I don't speak spanish.... but still it was so easy it makes me feel like she probably does that with every tourists so she 's probably at risk. Anyway I wore a condom with her also but I received quite a lot of oral sex without one.
Anyway I've been living in fear for four fricking years too scared to get tested. I'm backpacking around europe at the moment and I've gotten 2 skin conditions in the past 2 months and a cold, I'm still coughing once in a while right now, dry cough kind of thing I've always been healthy before this , I've never felt so scared in my life I can't even enjoy my trip anymore. Please I need some opinions on this, am I infected?
man it feels so great getting this stuff off my chest, I've never told this to anyone.

Thanks in advance for everyone taking the time to answer this sad diatribe




Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2011, 02:47:01 PM »
Artemis, from what you have reported of your incidents, you are worrying unnecessarily without any basis in HIV science. You wore a condom both times for intercourse which is exactly what you are supposed to do. They provide very effective protection against HIV transmission if the other person is infected.

If the condom had failed you would have known it as it would be have been very visible to the naked eye. It's not about teeny holes as some worry. When a condom fails it looks like a hoop on your penis with the pieces of the condom hanging down like fringe.

As for receiving oral, which is one of the most common of sexual activities, in the entire history of the epidemic there has never been a single case of transmission in that matter. I feel confident in saying you are not going to make history by becoming the first. So protected or not getting oral is not a risk for HIV.

It's a shame you have been living with this fear unnecessarily for so long. If you want to get tested just to get the inevitable negative result you can do that. For sure you will test negative based on what you have reported. We do advsie anyone who is sexually active to at least once a year get a full STD panel done because other STDs are much easier to acquire than HIV. But as far as HIV is concerned you can stop worrying.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2011, 04:00:29 PM »
Thank you so much for the reply mr. Velez you have no idea how happy it made me. The only problem is i've been living on these quick fixes for the past years, just some tangible evidence here and there that would tell me I hadn't been infected but whenever I have any kind of minor illness it just triggers back the fear, but still I've never had the guts to go and get tested, and right now is one of those heavily hypocondriac periods, I know you might not be a doctor but is it normal to get a couple of different skin problems in such a short period of time?
I'm sorry I'm writing this bullcrap if it doesn't actually sound like I've been infected but you have no idea what it means to me to have a reply, I've been living in dread for so long it's actually quite pathetic, I just wish I would know but seriously getting tested isn't even an option for me.
Anyway sorry for the rambling.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2011, 05:58:11 PM »
We cannot diagnose anything in this setting. If you have concerns you need to discuss them with a doctor. Certainly there is nothing you are reporting that suggests HIV is the issue. How could it be when you haven't said anything that would have put you are risk.

Unfortunately you are considering everything through the distorted lens of HIV jitters and anxiously misinterpreting everything through that skewered viewpoint. Whether you accept it or no, HIV is not your problem.

Frankly I can't think of anything more to say about this except get tested so you can put the issue to rest. And I hasten to repeat that testing would only be for your peace of mind and not because of a real risk. Because you have not had a risk.   
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2011, 10:28:22 AM »
Mr. Velez, Thank you, it is hard to put into words the extreme relief that I've experienced upon reading your post , It brought me temporary comfort and gave me the strenght to finish my trip without all this useless worrying , useless since I didn't have any travel insurance and so there was no way I could get any medical help out there. Now I know that your time is precious, and I will not become one of those people who post here incessantly with the same concerns over and over after being told they're okay, but the thing is , I'm afraid I might have left out some details on my previous posts either conscious or unconscioucly just so I could be afforded peace of mind.

 See I was only 17 those 4 years ago , I was dumb drunk and naive, I remember I did try to use a condom everytime there was vaginal penetration but I might not have. Also as I said before these girls didn't seem too concerned about wether I had a condom or not which only heightens my fears that first off they were infected for sure, and that they rode me without condom at some point during the long intercourse and I was too drunk to notice. Also I need to add that my condom knowledge was very limited, I didn't use any lubrication, I didn't make sure there was air in the tip and I used lifestyles which I heard break all the time. This changes everything doesn't it?

Now 4 years and 2 months later, back home, my coughing never stopped since I wrote this to you a month and 2 days ago, In fact it turned into something quite ugly which I assume to be pneumonia and which I'm only now getting over from... I think anyway, it comes and goes. The 2 skin conditions that I had mentioned before have been pityriasis rosea and some weird shingle lookalike which appeared on both of my upper thighs right next to the groin, about 20 small pimples on each side that doesn't itch. Plus now I'm getting small pimples with holes inside them on a daily basis on my upper body, maybe a new one everyday or two. Truth is, I have managed to convince myself that I am positive and that my immune system has ben severely compromised. Which is good because it's finally gonna bring myself to get tested as soon as possible, I'm actually taking an apointment right now because I believe I need to get on antivirals ASAP.

So based on all this, it does sound a lot more likely that I would have HIV doesn't it? As I said I'm pretty sure I do have it but your guess is better than mine. I am extremely grateful for the work you and the others are doing here in this section of the forums. Thank you.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2011, 10:56:01 AM »
We cannot diagnose anything in this setting. If you have concerns you need to discuss them with a doctor. Certainly there is nothing you are reporting that suggests HIV is the issue. How could it be when you haven't said anything that would have put you are risk.

Unfortunately you are considering everything through the distorted lens of HIV jitters and anxiously misinterpreting everything through that skewered viewpoint. Whether you accept it or no, HIV is not your problem.

Frankly I can't think of anything more to say about this except get tested so you can put the issue to rest. And I hasten to repeat that testing would only be for your peace of mind and not because of a real risk. Because you have not had a risk.   

No, it does not "sound" as if HIV is the issue. I don't have anything to add to what I said previosuly. Get tested, collect your inevtiable negative result and see a doctor about the real cause of your symptoms.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2011, 06:00:51 PM »
I mean no offense by saying this and again I know that your time is valuable, but I feel like you might have only read the last 2 lines of what I've written. I don't understand what would make my test results inevitably negative based on the last thing I've written to you. I'm only asking because I now took an apointment to an H.I.V clinic but I've got a few days waiting to do and I want to get prepared for the diagnosis that is to come.
I just need to understand what exactly makes you think based on the last informations I've shared with you that you would be so sure I will test negative. Because from what I understand of the virus, which is little compared to you but at 21 years old with no history of anything, nothing worse than the flu in my whole life, and I'm supposed to believe that everything's alright? Or that maybe I've got something else? Nothing could cause all the things I've described besides HIV, as far as I know anyway. And what about the intercourse? the fact I was drunk and was very clumsy about condom use? Please enlighten me , this will be my last time posting in this part of the forums, I'm just going insane out here you have no idea.
Again, thank you so much.

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2011, 07:36:00 PM »
If you were so damn drunk to remember you were also to drunk to get an erection.

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2011, 07:40:07 PM »
Fair enough, what about my other concerns though?

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2011, 07:42:43 PM »
Coughing and pimples have nothing to do with HIV.

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #10 on: October 07, 2011, 08:23:53 PM »
Then what has anything to do with HIV? I though that immuno supressed people got pneumonia , also they're not exactly pimples and they're appearing at a dreadful rate. I usually dont get pimples often. Also what about everything else that I've said? About me being clumsy with condoms and probably being too drunk to notice if they'd broken? About the girls not caring? I've read some posts on here where you guys said there was no risk and the person turned out infected, I fear this is going to be my case. Honestly I was hoping for more than a 10 words answer for something that is eating out my soul. I know I could be asking somewhere else but this seems to be the best and most unbiased source for HIV questions online.

Thank you for your time RapidRod

Offline RapidRod

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2011, 08:36:59 PM »
No you did not read were we said someone was not at risk and became infected.

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2011, 09:30:13 PM »
I didn't mean to offend saying that, please don't take it wrong, I'm just incredibly worried. I really appreciate that you've been answering my posts, if there's a way you could answer the questions I've been asking I would be a thousand times grateful. Thank you

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2011, 09:32:50 PM »
You keep on bringing up what ifs when the bottom line in all of this is that you did not have a risk. Period.

You can test if you want to and collect the inevtiable negative result just for your peace of mind.

There's really nothing more we can say about your situation. Cut out the drama and get on with your life. If we had any doubts about the situation we would tell you so.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2011, 05:07:19 PM »
What I've been trying to say is I think I might have had bareback vaginal sex with two most likely HIV+ sex workers , assuming that I did, how likely would it be I've been infected? And what would be the typical symptoms 4 years ans 2 months after infection?

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2011, 05:22:06 PM »
We're not going to get into guessing games with you about your HIV status. Neither the presence nor the absence of symptoms will ever tell you anything accurately about your HIV status.

If you think you may have had unprotected intercourse sometime back, get tested. You can get tested anytime now. From what you have reported I am expecting you to test negative because I am not convinced such risks even took place. But you can put an end to worrying by getting tested. Whenever in doubt about HIV status that is always the smartest thing to do.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2011, 07:54:54 PM »
okay thank you. well I'm getting tested on tuesday, I know that the waiting is just gonna kill me. Anyway I got my fingers crossed.

Thank you both deeply Mr.Velez and RapidRod, your work is greatly appreciated. :)

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2011, 08:19:00 PM »
OK, good luck with your test result. Fingers crossed for you.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2011, 04:46:42 PM »
Thank you Mr.Velez, you are very kind. :)

Honestly I didn't want to come back here and be a bother, but I just got tested this morning and anxiously waiting for my test results which should come back next week or so, anxiously is quite an understatement as anyone who's been in the same situation knows. Thankfully I just popped a handful of Clinozopan and it seems to be helping, feeling comfortably numb.

I've just got a few questions that popped into my mind after my doctor apointment , she kept saying I worried needlessly and that nothing I had shown or described to her was typical of an HIV infection, she said after 4 years I would have no energy and would endup in the hospital from being so sick. She wasn't an HIV doctor but she works in an HIV clinic so I assumed she still knew quite a bit but probably not as much as you Mr.Velez or anyone else in this section of the forums, do you agree with her assesment though? After that I told her to check my tongue because having read extensively on the subject I know about tongue discoloration and stuff. So she looked and said everything was okay but I told her to look farther since I had noticed some white back there. She said I did have some of what she called mushrooms but that it was very common and a lot of people got them , she said that if it was due to HIV my whole tongue would be covered in white. Again do you agree with this? Afterwards I showed her everything that was worrying me, what I had though was a skin condition before she said was just due to irritated hair follicle or something like that. I showed her my lymph nodes and she said it was fine, so I was feeling a bit better but still this tongue thing got me worried, she gave me some meds so it would go away. She said she was 90% sure I was fine and that she didn't think there was anything suspicious but still I wonder where she bases that number from,  10% seems pretty high, she explained she couldn't know for sure what happened with me and those girls.

Anyway so I faced my biggest fear and went and got tested, while this happened I had a flashback from 4 years ago where I remembered that I did get a blood test. The problem is, that test had been taken less than 7 days after the encounters so it is completely irrelevant as far as H.I.V is concerned right? I wish someone could have told me this back when I was 17.

Anyway I was feeling this pressing need to write this down here, as you know doctors can sometimes be pretty unclear so I was hoping you guys might help me sort this thing out. I really need to be ready for the coming diagnosis.

Thank you so very much

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #19 on: October 11, 2011, 05:29:06 PM »
The bottom line is that you took the test and you have got to wait for the result. We don't do guessing games here even though I understand you're anxious and wanting to know you're negative.

 I don't exactly agree with the woman's assessment in that someone can be HIV positive for years without showing side effects.

But mostly I still expect you to test negative. Do yourself a big favor and get busy with other things in your life while you're waiting for your test result. ...which I am still expecting will be negative.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2011, 06:43:12 PM »
Well based on all the information I've shared with you it brings me great comfort that you would seem so condident that I will be turning negative , this doctor did bring me some measure of peace as well since she had seen many HIV+ patients in her office the clinic being an H.I.V clinic and apparently they seldom look like me. She actually did say like you that some people don't carry any symptoms for a long while which is the biggest reason this disease drives me crazy, wether I get something or I don't get anything there's always a way to fuel my fears given the right angle.  :(

Anyway you have helped me tremendously, is there a way I could send donations? I know you're already paid for this but some people here are volunteers right? I'd like to contribute if there's a way.

Offline Andy Velez

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2011, 08:18:08 AM »
Thanks for the offer of a donation but we cannot accept them. Any AIDS service organization in your area would be grateful if you want to make a contribution to them.
Andy Velez

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #22 on: October 17, 2011, 11:13:43 AM »
Hey Mr. Velez, or anyone who would be so kind to answer.

I'm getting my results tomorrow and I have a question. Right now I am mortified with worry, I'm actually going insane even though I took a couple of pills to calm down. See I called the clinic to see if they had my test results this morning, the woman said they didn't but after a more throurough look she finally found it. She was a secretary so she said she couldn't look at it and she said there was no doctor so if I wanted to have the results I would need to come tomorrow morning to see the doc. She told me that my files hadn't been looked at yet by the clinic's doc . I got tested in an hospital and that hospital is supposed to send the files as soon as it's ready. Now it is and no one looked at it. The secretary told me that in some cases the hospital call the clinic in advance to let them know of a more dire situation, would that be the case with HIV?

 Of course I understand that this would be different from country to country and from hospital to hospital and being Canadian it's probably not the same procedure as in the states and that you guys would have a tough time shedding light on this. It's just that I didn't know files could just be sitting without anyone taking a look at it especially since I think I made it clear to the doctor how worried I was, I basically went crazy in her office hence why she prescribed me some chill pill for the waiting.

Now I'm going in tomorrow morning and you have no idea how I'm feeling , over 4 years of built-up anxiety, the terror has never been so real. Anyway I realise I'm rambling , I guess the one question was, would the hospital have called the clinic if my results had turned up positive? Because letting a HIV case sit on a shelf doesn't seem right, I was hoping to get my results right away. I'm just mortified and would hang unto any possible hope that I'll turn up okay.

Again, thank you

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #23 on: October 18, 2011, 12:59:31 PM »
Alright, I'm freaking pissed. I went up to the clinic today because they said they had my test results. I get there and I've never been so anxious in my life. I'm sitting in the waiting chair shaking and fidgeting even though I'd gulped down the remaining of my pills a few hours before. When she was finally calls out for me after interminable minutes I get into her office, I don't even want to sit down I'm pacing about the room, she looks at me confused and she tells me the results are good. You have no idea the weight that was lifted up my body and that moment. I hasten to ask her for HIV as well just to be sure. She says no, syphilis and Hepatits B. She tells me that it takes longer for HIV and HepC's results to come. This is fricking torture, I felt like I'd been severely ass-raped, hard. Now I gotta wait for a week longer to get the results, I'm dying of anxiety and she wouldn't even up my clonozopan dosage, said it would only make me sleep; god if I could only be sleeping for the next week that would be the biggest blessing I could receive.

So what does it mean? the fact that the results haven't come yet? Should I take it as a bad omen or is it perfectly normal? Please I need you guys to answer me I can't bear this crap any longer, I feel like I'm waiting for the deathrow somehow, just when I though my torments would be over, please answer me, anyone.

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #24 on: October 18, 2011, 01:07:16 PM »
I see Ann and jk have been answering the posts since yesterday, if you could answer mine it would be greatly appreciated. I'm freaking out.

Offline Ann

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #25 on: October 20, 2011, 06:36:34 AM »
Art,


We don't have crystal balls, so we do not know what lab your clinic uses or what their hiv test turn-around time may be. You'll just have to sit tight.

And I don't want to hear any moaning about how you can't wait. You can. I have to wait three month before I get the results of my regular monitoring tests for hiv. If I can wait three months four time a year, you can wait another week for what is likely going to be a negative result.

Ann
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #26 on: October 20, 2011, 10:58:35 AM »
Thanks for the tough love sweety, I just called and apparently they got the results now but still noone looked at it. I don't understand this fucking thing , I find it irresponsible , if I was sick wouldn't it be best if I knew ASAP so I can get on meds? Now I'm gonna have to come in tomorrow morning to finally find out. I've been getting itchy all over without rash , could that be a symptom of HIV? I can't find anything relevant online when I look up upper body itch no rash.

Thanks for listening I literally have noone in my life and this fear is driving me mad.

Offline Ann

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #27 on: October 20, 2011, 12:10:08 PM »
Art,

Itching is not a symptom of primary hiv infection.

Quit fretting about meds. If you are poz - which is highly doubtful - you may not need meds for years. I've been poz for over fourteen years and I'm not on meds and I don't consider myself "sick" either.

By the way, if your results were poz, it would most likely have been red-flagged by the lab. So settle down already.

Ann

« Last Edit: October 20, 2011, 12:16:18 PM by Ann »
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Artemis

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #28 on: October 20, 2011, 11:42:40 PM »
Thanks Ann that makes me feel awesome , on a side-note (maybe I should ask you that somewhere else) but
wouldn't 14 years without medication would have basically... killed you? I know that some people are slow progressors , are you one of them? Your Cd4's haven't dropped in 14 years? That's very unusual isn't it?

Offline jkinatl2

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Re: Please help me
« Reply #29 on: October 20, 2011, 11:54:26 PM »
Thanks Ann that makes me feel awesome , on a side-note (maybe I should ask you that somewhere else) but
wouldn't 14 years without medication would have basically... killed you? I know that some people are slow progressors , are you one of them? Your Cd4's haven't dropped in 14 years? That's very unusual isn't it?


Ann is a Long Term Slow Progressor, There are also Long Term Non-Progressors who somehow control the virus on their own. Most of the rest of us will require meds at one point or another, usually within five years after infection.

"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline Artemis

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Please help me
« Reply #30 on: October 21, 2011, 01:40:25 PM »
Hello, I see this thread has been read by many people and I'm writing this to anyone who might be in the same situation as I have been. I have gotten my test results yesterday for every possible STD's including HIV. It turned out negative, unsurprisingly as Mr. Velez or Ms Ann might say. This will be my last post on these forums and there is just one thing I want to say. I have lived in crippling fear for the past 4 years too scared at even the though of getting tested, scared of what the results would be, I would go and lurk online to try and discover through other people's cases wether I did or did not have HIV, I have wasted significant hours of my life for naught. Sometimes the fear would be so real that I had gotten to a point where I was positive of being positive. It is crazy what the brain would have you believe , such a powerful piece of machinery that will often turn agaisnt you , anxiety and stress will make you sick , you will start getting random pains everwhere , in the bones and joints , you'll get the flu and skin ailments because of it. And when it fades away you will start thinking you're okay again, so no need to get tested, but once any ailment comes back minor as it might be, the fear will kick back in. But still you will be too scared to get tested, because you will have managed to convince yourself once again that you are most definitly sick.

Of course everyone goes through life in different ways, but I am certain some people might be in my old predicament , lurking out here , uncertain about their future , there is nothing worse than uncertainty. So even if this is only relevant to one person , I feel it my duty to say, get tested. Collect the inevitable result as Mr.Velez would put it and don't let this fear follow you for years of your life. Just do it now. I wouldn't have imagined so but once the blood was drawn out of me, a deep sense of calm washed over me, because I knew I did what had to be done. Now I'm 21 years old , in perfect health , and I've never been this exstasic.

Get tested.

 Thank you to all of you Mr. Velez , Ann , jk , RapidRod . I know it's not easy dealing with crazy OCD hypocondriacs who spell like they've been kicked out of third grade.

By the way I will give every single one of my spare pennies to organizations aiming to cure HIV. This shit needs
to be eradicated. And it will be.

-Artemis signing out for good

Offline Andy Velez

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 23,855
Re: Please help me
« Reply #31 on: October 21, 2011, 03:49:36 PM »
You're welcome. Glad to hear you received the official confirmation of your negative HIV status.

Now get on with your life. And always use condoms for vaginal/anal intercourse.
Andy Velez

 


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