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Author Topic: Life with positive partner  (Read 2418 times)

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Offline OceanLiner

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  • Posts: 3
Life with positive partner
« on: January 15, 2017, 04:20:52 pm »
Hello everybody. Before I begin I want to say please excuse my ignorance in any matters discussed, this is all very new to me. I sincerely don't want to offend anybody.

My new partner is HIV positive. He was diagnosed 7 years ago and we live in the UK. He revealed this to me a couple of days ago, and pretty much disclosed it as a deal-breaker. But to me it's not. I love him very much and want to move past this and hopefully it can just be something we can work with and not define us. I have spent the last couple of days researching everything I can about HIV just in attempt to educate myself, but I'm still left with lingering questions that I'm unsure about. Maybe somebody could help me out?

1. I have come across terms like "viral load" and "undetectable" - should I just ask him if he is at the undetectable stage or is there another way I should put it?

2. How can I best support him? Will there be regular hospital/clinic attendances?

3. Can I freely talk about this, or is he likely to be quite guarded/defensive about it? Should I pick moments carefully to talk about it? How can I be more sensitive?

4. From what I've read, positive/negative couples are somewhat common and have a successful and healthy relationship, is this a realistic expectation?

5. Is there anything I should be aware of day-to-day?

Again, sorry if this comes across woefully ignorant, but I suppose I am. Thanks in advance for any advice you can give.

Offline Ptrk3

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  • Posts: 2,775
Re: Life with positive partner
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2017, 05:07:13 pm »
Here are a few links with information you can peruse at will to answer many of your questions or give you the wherewithal to find the answers yourself:



How you approach the issues you raise depends on your unique relationship, so only you know how best to approach the matter.

If he has been on treatment for several years, he should be "undetectable," but you certainly need to know this before you engage in any sexual activities with him in order that you take appropriate precautions, etc.

If he was diagnosed seven years ago, he likely is already in the system and has regularly scheduled doctor/clinic/blood test appointments to monitor the infection.

Only you can determine how "sensitive" to be based on his feedback and willingness to openly discuss with you.  Presumably, you have told him that you will be there for him, so that's a sensitive start.

There are many positive/negative couples who have a successful and healthy relationship, so, yes, it is a realistic expectation if both parties want the relationship to work.

All you need to be aware of is that HIV infection can be managed and people can live long an healthy lives, as long as they adhere to their medical regimen.

Let your partner know about this forum.  Perhaps he, too can join, for support and enlightenment.
HIV 101 - Basics
HIV 101
You can read more about Transmission and Risks here:
HIV Transmission and Risks
You can read more about Testing here:
HIV Testing
You can read more about Treatment-as-Prevention (TasP) here:
You can read more about HIV prevention here:
HIV prevention
You can read more about PEP and PrEP here
PEP and PrEP

Offline mecch

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  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Life with positive partner
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2017, 05:44:07 pm »
Most answers to your many questions are it depends on the 2 individuals - you and him.
If he is knowledgeable he will walk you through the answers and dialogue necessary.
1) yes you probably want to know his treatment status and if he is undetectable. Then you can make your safer sex decisions
2) if he is an average HIV+ of today on successful treatment, I don't see why you would have involvement at all in his doctors or hospitals.  huh?
3) depends. just try it out and you'll see
4) yes common since the beginning of the epidemic. several decades ago
5) most HIV+ people on successful treatment have a normal seeming life and HIV is a thing to be managed like many other things that need managing.

Best of luck!
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline OceanLiner

  • Member
  • Posts: 3
Re: Life with positive partner
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2017, 04:15:02 am »
Thanks so much for taking the time to reply, it means a lot and certainly gives me more peace of mind. I'll follow those links to learn more and perhaps just give things more time and take it slow.

Offline Jim Allen

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Re: Life with positive partner
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2017, 04:51:47 am »

I think you have been given great advice by the others.

HIV is not a barrier to having a long healthy relationship. I've had a few relationships with HIV negative partners and HIV was no barrier to the relationship. Now I can only speak for myself when I say HIV on a day to day basis has no impact on my life, I take a pill a day and go for my check-ups at the hospital from time to time, it not a problem.

I have come across terms like "viral load" and "undetectable" - should I just ask him if he is at the undetectable stage or is there another way I should put it?

Yes, you should and I think it would be a good thing for yourself to ask him about this and I recommend anyone in a relationship no matter what HIV status of the people in the relationship should talk about safer sex and risk reduction, and testing. Keeping in mind that activities that are "safe" for HIV transmission can still be risks for easier to transmit STI's. 

Now for you already know his HIV status so next to the normal STI talk and testing togather, using condoms ect ect his HIV status and UD should also be diucssed for your own health and safty. So TaSP is Treatment as prevention, this is not something new, and has been shown to work a few times over and the short version is that if he has confirmed and sustained (>6 months) undetectable viral load than the risks of transmission greatly reduces to negligible.  That is of course if he is on treatment, remains adherent to his treatment and remains undetectable. (UD)  https://www.preventionaccess.org/consensus

Anyhow wishing you both all the best.

HIV 101 - Everything you need to know
HIV 101
Read more about Testing here:
HIV Testing
Read about Treatment-as-Prevention (TasP) here:
You can read about HIV prevention here:
HIV prevention
Read about PEP and PrEP here
PEP and PrEP

Offline OceanLiner

  • Member
  • Posts: 3
Re: Life with positive partner
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2017, 12:18:49 pm »
Thanks so much for the info, Jim!


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