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Author Topic: Just starting out  (Read 1417 times)

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Offline alejandro9

  • member
  • Posts: 2
Just starting out
« on: September 25, 2013, 03:47:47 PM »
First post. Tested positive in July 2013, most likely seroconverted in April. Have a good job but doesn't offer insurance. I ended up getting connected to care through my local HIV/AIDS non profit. Sucked because I made too much money to qualify for coverage through Ryan White but it does cover a portion, also found out I don't qualify for ADAP, that was the worst. Since I don't have insurance it took me a little longer to get into the local clinic that specializes in HIV but am very glad I did.

Just started Stribild today, chosen over others because it is less likely to cause fluctuations with my depression. I am fortunate enough to qualify for prescription assistance through the pharmaceutical company and don't have to pay for the meds, thank the heavens! More anxious than anything else. Next doctor's appointment isn't until November so just a waiting game to see how I respond to the meds.

Biggest thing I've dealt with is the lack of people I know who have gone through/are going through this. I talk to my best friends but it's more like giving them information instead of a dialogue and discussion. Very grateful to be able to turn to this community for support, advice and discussions!
Diagnosed 7/16/2013
Aug/13: CD4 492/ VL 91,000
Sept 13: Started Stribild

Offline Jeff G

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 9,239
  • How am I doing Beren ?
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2013, 04:09:46 PM »
Welcome  Alejandro9 ... I'm happy you found us !

Offline NewPerspective

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2013, 01:48:14 AM »
Hey Alejandro. Just want to quote something I posted for another person. Seems almost relevant here. It's always good to reach out and find people in similar situations for support. I don't know anyone who is HIV positive so I've been looking on the internet to meet people and bounce off experiences.

Best!

Hi Jose,

I saw your post and wanted to respond to give you words of encouragement. I'm 28, male, gay, and was diagnosed in July 2013 ... so pretty recent and still fresh for me.

I went through ups and downs and have been more up than down lately. Yes, it is a big adjustment in so many ways. I've learned the biggest adjustment has been internal. A lot of people talk about acceptance - that is accepting what is now an aspect of your life. It's tough but not impossible as long as you take deep breaths along the way, find support where you can, and keep on living!

I'm fortunate to have a really supportive Aids Service Organization close to where I reside. I actually received my diagnosis there and, through them, went through my blood work and found a specialist, who I now see. After a month from diagnosis I started medication (Complera 1 pill/day). I've never taken vitamins regularly so taking a pill and remembering to do it has been a responsibility that I've had to learn. It's all about taking deep breaths and telling yourself that it's okay ... BECAUSE it is OKAY!

In terms of finding love, my best friend told me that you always find love when you least expect it. So true. In which case, I've found it helpful just to live my life and keep friends close. If/When a relationship arises, I'll take it step by step at that time. I'm still dealing with the "When do I disclose?" situation and haven't really figured that one out yet for myself. I live in a small town and haven't told my parents. I don't intend to, actually. Not anytime soon that is. Luckily, I have a job with good health insurance and have managed on my own just fine. Since I have been able to draw a select number of friends closer for support, I've found that I've been able to do okay. I also meet regularly with a Psychologist, which has helped me as well. Sometimes, it just helps to "talk it out" or to just "get it out." Forums like this is good for that purpose.

Sorry this is turning out to be long. I just read your message and it reminded me of how I felt. I'm not that far along from you, in terms of getting this diagnosis. Yeah, it sucks. BUT, it's definitely not the end. Strength needs to be found from within and even though I don't know you, I'm sure you can do it! It's not how we fall that defines us but how we pick ourselves back up again. Live strong.

Offline alejandro9

  • member
  • Posts: 2
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2013, 10:09:10 AM »
Thanks! Just so strange having to navigate this without having anyone really around to help. My local ASO has been AMAZING and i'm so grateful to have them. The online realm seems like the safest bet while i'm still coming to terms with this condition. Just not ready to be "out" to the world.
Diagnosed 7/16/2013
Aug/13: CD4 492/ VL 91,000
Sept 13: Started Stribild

Offline NewPerspective

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2013, 03:11:35 PM »
I totally feel the same way. My ASO has been an amazing resource to me as well. I donʻt feel the need to "come out" in any way to the world regarding anything. As with you, Iʻm still coming to terms with my circumstance as well. BUT, I have to say that it has been getting better and I feel like I am getting stronger, psychologically.

Offline EUINAU

  • Member
  • Posts: 38
  • New to This
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2013, 04:05:26 PM »
Alejandro9 and newperspective I am in similar boat as you two. I was diagnosed mid May - still in seroconversion and started meds straightaway. My partner is negative and I too do not have the need to come out to anyone. I think I am doing well and just accepted new me and fact I have to take pills twice a day. I think my partner is not dealing with it as good as he cannot understand that I am fine and life goes on.

I too do not know anyone with HiV and this forum has been amazing in support and available info.

Offline oksikoko

  • Member
  • Posts: 672
  • Writing the congressman again
    • the treatment cascade
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2013, 05:33:08 PM »
Nothing to add that the others didn't say, but welcome to the forums!

I was also on the Gilead PAP for Stribild for a month while ADAP/COBRA/Medicaid worked themselves out, and I may have to beseech them again after December. As much as people bitch about the pharmaceutical companies, at least they do try to help when a person simply can't afford the drugs and has no other means to get them.

My experience with Stribild has been pretty good. Hopefully yours will be too.

It sucks that you guys don't know anyone else with HIV. Pretty much everyone I know is positive!
Code: [Select]
2013-10-03:                ☣ VL (=) undetectable ☣ CD4 (+) 1105
2013-05-23:                ☣ VL (=) undetectable ☣ CD4 (-) 945
2013-02-25:                ☣ VL (-) undetectable ☣ CD4 (+) 1123
2012-12-16: Enter Stribild
2012-11-20: HIV+           ☣ VL (→) 132,683      ☣ CD4 (→) 920
2012-04-01: HIV-
Dates in this signature file conform to ISO 8601. ;-)

Offline NewPerspective

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2013, 09:47:32 PM »
It would be nice to socialize with people who are pos. It would definitely help me feel more "of the group" then an outsider. And, it would probably help me along psychologically to really know that I am not the only one. The internet has been good for me to read about othersʻ experience, but it still is a bit lonely I have to admit.

Iʻve found that nature-based activities helps me a lot. Lucky that I live in Hawaii! Starting to do morning lap swims at the beach before work. Nothing more cool than swimming with turtles before having to sit at a desk for eight or more hours.


Offline buginme2

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,744
  • Certified Life Coach
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2013, 10:26:05 PM »


Iʻve found that nature-based activities helps me a lot. Lucky that I live in Hawaii! Starting to do morning lap swims at the beach before work. Nothing more cool than swimming with turtles before having to sit at a desk for eight or more hours.

OMG that sounds like the most awesome way to start a day, so jeals.

"All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz, and I'm fine."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6e0gcEC1TWE

Offline NewPerspective

  • Member
  • Posts: 17
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2013, 10:30:48 PM »
Yup. Truly lucky. Just went on an 18 mile roundtrip hike with a friend. The trailhead was near the volcano, rugged lava rocks, and the end was a pristine, solitary beach. Nice. Gonna do it again. Actually, gonna explore more what amazing treasures this island has. Funny thing. This diagnosis is really helping me "get outside" and explore more. I guess there is a silver lining to everything huh.

Offline oksikoko

  • Member
  • Posts: 672
  • Writing the congressman again
    • the treatment cascade
Re: Just starting out
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2013, 02:03:27 AM »
This diagnosis is really helping me "get outside" and explore more. I guess there is a silver lining to everything huh.

In terms of my attitude toward life and other people, my diagnosis is the best thing that ever happened to me. So. That's a weird thing to realize...

Also jealous of your turtles. I saw a rat today, but that's about it for nature. ;)
Code: [Select]
2013-10-03:                ☣ VL (=) undetectable ☣ CD4 (+) 1105
2013-05-23:                ☣ VL (=) undetectable ☣ CD4 (-) 945
2013-02-25:                ☣ VL (-) undetectable ☣ CD4 (+) 1123
2012-12-16: Enter Stribild
2012-11-20: HIV+           ☣ VL (→) 132,683      ☣ CD4 (→) 920
2012-04-01: HIV-
Dates in this signature file conform to ISO 8601. ;-)

 


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