Main Forums > Someone I Care About Has HIV

Working through my emotions


  Six months ago my boyfriend came to me and admitted he was unfaithful and that his actions had resulted in a positive diagnosis of HIV. As I feel everyone does who hears the news the first time, I felt a range of conflicting and overwhelming emotions. My fears of course being that he had unintentionally infected me. The person that trusted and cared for him the most.
  Because I have faith in our relationship and because I could see his genuine remorse that he made such a big mistake, I decided that a love like ours was worth fighting to rebuild and we are still together. Through all of this, I have had no regrets about my decision to give our relationship a second chance and I plan to spend the rest of my life with him. The fact that he has HIV and that he was unfaithful does not change who he is as a person and how much he cares for me.
  Since we are now a serodiscordant couple and I am still learning what that really means. Being there for him when he goes to his infectious disease doctor to get his labs done. Cleaning up his vomit as he gets used to the medications he is on. Being there for him when the guilt and anger at his own actions cause him to be depressed and upset. And of course having to buy condoms after years of me being on the pill, something that seems insignificant to most people but for me it brings up memories of the horrible pain that resulted from his infidelity.
  I guess the reason I decided to post here is that I have a lot of things I am going through emotionally that I can't share with some of the people I care the most about. We have been going to therapy and it is helping us both cope with it all. Although my family knows about the infidelity and us going to therapy, the only people that know about the diagnosis are his father and his best friend.
  We decided that until both of us were confident in our relationship and he was on a medication that he could tolerate the side effects, he didn't want the rest of his family or my family to know about it. We are not ready emotionally yet to share this life change with everyone else.
  Everyone has different family dynamics and I doubt that there will be any judgement from anyone on either side for it, I worry that they will get concerned for his health before he finds a medication that works for him. From others experiences I have read on here, HIV is a very manageable disease and as long as you are careful and make healthy choices, with modern medication, I truly expect him to be around for a very long time.
  I just wanted to share my story and declare to those who can relate to our experience that I need to know that it gets easier and that one day we can have a normal life like everyone else. I have read a lot  of statistics and some made me feel better and some made me feel worse. Just wanted to hear from real people who have made it through this period, any advice for us?

For us education and getting his level undetectable helped a lot. Safe sex and both of you taking care of your health helps too. Our sex life is back to the way it was before minus me getting to play with an extra girl every once in awhile.
I can't imagine dealing with this and infidelity. My boyfriend contracted his from his ex. It's hard to talk to others because they don't understand why you would risk it if you could find someone who isn't sick, but love is funny.
I think the hardest part for me is when I get the flu my first thought is usually "oh no my luck ran out" it's not logical, but fear isn't logical. The other difficult part is procreation. Hopefully you are already blessed with children or the financial resources for sperms washing.
I wish you both the best of luck.  Once you get over the initial shock and fear I promise it gets better. Education makes a world of difference

Thanks 8yearsoflove, getting him undetectable is really the first step for both of us. I feel like I dodged a literal bullet by not getting infected because, being on the pill, we had "unprotected" sex several times before he was diagnosed. I really feel like its was an act of God that things didn't turn out differently. Our sex life now is non existent but that is my choice. I know that with condoms the chance is slim to none as far as transmitting it goes but not only am I still working though this emotionally with his infidelity but I am terrified to even think about sex until I know that he is as healthy as he can be. He realizes how big of a mistake it all was so he has been very patient with me. It hasn't exactly been easy, but I know that if I tried to rush being emotionally ready, I wouldn't enjoy myself and I would regret it.
  You are definitely right about it being difficult to talk to people about it too, I feel like anyone in my shoes would run for the hills but you are right about love, it is a crazy thing, and I feel like I would be crazy not to try and work this out with him. I think that thinking about his as a "sick" person is a difficult concept for myself as well. He hasn't shown ANY symptoms and of course every time he coughs to clear his throat I feel a slight panic. As you said, logic kinda goes out the window in these situations but it is helpful to know I am not the only one with these irrational fears.
  Procreation is a sensitive subject for us both, mainly because neither of us are ready to have kids. That being said, we do one day plan to have them if it is possible. I have read more good than bad as far as that is concerned in my research. I have heard many people, when using the proper precautions, can conceive a child naturally without transmitting it to the negative partner if the other is undetectable. Sperm washing is incredibly expensive and although we are blessed to live comfortably, I doubt that paying that type of money for something that isn't a guarantee is really the route that we want to go down. We have discussed it and honestly, if we are not able to have children naturally, adoption is an option as well. I know that when I have a child I will be able to love them, regardless if I give birth to them or not.
  I really appreciate your comments, knowing that I am not alone helps, and every day that passes, the shock of it all minimizes which gives me hope for the future.


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