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My twin sister has HIV

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TwinSister:
I just want to talk to somebody. I have this deep sadness inside, my sister has had HIV for 5 years now. She has refused to take medication because they made her very seek. But recently she has been feeling really bad and went for some more testing and the doctor said she has a very low count of those good cells. She started ARV-therapy now but still feels sick: fatigue and nauseous all the time. It breaks my heart because we were always so close, she is such a big part of myself and I feel like I am loosing her.  I could never imagine that something like this could ever happen. Her and I grew up thinking one day we will both have families and our kids would play together. She was still a virgin when she met this guy, her first love, who was HIV positive and did not tell her about it. He left when she became pregnant and our mom talked her into getting an abortion, so she did and that`s how she found out she was HIV+ . She regretted deeply having an abortion later, severe depression. She got married later to a nice guy and have been with him for 2 years, she could not get pregnant anymore, they tried for 2 years. Her husband is HIV negative. She filed for divorce.
I am married and have a son and can`t help but feel guilty that my twin sister does not have the same. I know God has his ways its just so not what I have had in mind the life would be. I feel helpless and cant even imagine one day not having my twin anymore. 

skeebo1969:


  First let me say, I'm sorry to hear about your twin sister.  It's hard to say, but she might be feeling the way she does to due her low Cd4 count ("good cells").  I know when I started meds my Cd4's were 103 and I felt terrible.  With time, and adherence to my meds, my immune system rebounded and I felt better.

  I don't know all the details regarding your sister's health but as long as her reproductive organs are still working there is no reason why she couldn't have children in the future.  All those dreams you two shared are very much a reality still.

  But, she needs to put in the effort to get there first.  And that means taking her meds.  She's going through a lot right now, divorce and health issues, speaking to a therapist might help.  Your continued support is imperative.

Jeff G:
Welcome to the forums Sister . Skeebo's thoughts mirror mine but I would like to add one thing . If your sister is well enough and willing she may benefit from joining this forum herself . If she continues to have your support and the fellowship we offer here perhaps it may help her see she isn't alone and others are going through similar situations or have recovered from them . Im wishing you and your sister the best of luck . 

jkinatl2:
Hello, and welcome to the forums! I am so sorry to hear about your sister!

May I ask what medications she is on? Also, where are you guys? Maybe we can help sort out the side effects issues if we have more information.

I am confused - did you sister file for divorce because she could not have kids? Was the marriage good other than that? It's sad when important things like marriages end, and it would be doubly tragic for hers to end while they are still in love.

I am on ART, and have been on a successful regimen for over six years now - without undue fatigue or nausea. Maybe your sister can go on another regimen? Or at least, if we know the drugs she is taking, we can offer advice to overcome those things as best as we can.

I really hope things look better for her soon. On meds, she is not likely to grow sick or die anytime soon - but the QUALITY of that life is just as important as the QUANTITY.

We are here to help.

TwinSister:
I can not express how grateful I am to be able to talk about it openly here. I have just talked to my sister, she is feeling better, her appetite came back. I feel better.  Our previous conversation she sounded like she was saying good bye to me and I lost it after I got off the phone.
Skeebo1969, her CD4 are 159 right now, I wish she was as adherent as you are. You really made a 180 degree turn! I have read some very helpful information here on how to persuade her to keep taking her medication regularly.
Jeff G, thank you for your kind words I will mention it to her!
Jkinatl2, She just started Combivir and R...I couldn't understand very well it starts with "R". I will be learning more about it for sure. I live in Oklahoma, US and she lives in Russia. I moved to US almost 10 years ago when I went to university here I met my husband and decided to stay. We go visit often and just came back at the end of March.  I know that inability to get pregnant put a huge strain on her and her husband`s relationship as she grew more and more frustrated with not being able to become a Mom. 
Right now I am just glad she accepted to take her medication finally and am getting really hopeful after reading you guys and everybody else`s experience with this. I just want her to live. Just knowing she is alive and happy makes me happy.

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