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Author Topic: Brother tested +  (Read 3762 times)

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Offline concernedsister810

  • New Member
  • Posts: 1
Brother tested +
« on: October 17, 2013, 12:13:47 pm »
Hi. I'm glad i found this site. If it were months ago, i wouldn't even care to google sites with this topic.i just want to voice out what i am feeling right now. Here it goes....
Found out a week ago that my bro was tested positive. I knew that the numbers are getting higher every year for people being diagnosed +. But it never crossed my mind that it would happen to us. It was an accident when my dad found out that my bro is +. I guess he doesn't have any plans of telling us. I saw how my parents reacted when they found out. It was all sorts of emotions except for happiness. It was the news that's so hard to absorb. I feel my parent's pain and disappointment but still, they took care of him when he was admitted in the hospital because of consistent high temp for days. We cried hard when our dad told us of his condition. since then, my mom always questions herself on what she did wrong. She keeps on thinking that maybe there was a thing or two that she missed when raising her son. I'm sure my dad feels the same way. I can still recall how my dad broke the news. And i still cry. I keep on praying for him to get better, praying that there is a chance that we can turn back time to change all these. But there's no rewind button. I pray that one of these days, someone will find the cure to stop the worries. I also pray to God for my parents to be strong as they are not young anymore to muster this kind of situation. Also, another concern of mine is i haven't told my husband yet. My mom doesn't want me to tell him because she's ashamed of what is happening to our family right now. Also, i don't know how he will react if he finds out. I know he's a good and understanding person. But no offense, this is not an ordinary  kind of news in the family. This is the time that you just wish its just a simple illness. I don't know... Its just too much to absorb. I still cant accept that its my brother. I keep on looking for a center where they educate family on this kind of situation to help us understand more.  :'(

Offline GoForIt

  • Member
  • Posts: 214
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2013, 12:44:09 pm »
Sorry that you are having to go through this.  I feel like I understand because I myself just recently tested positive a couple months ago and have had to talk with my family about it.  I have had to take a huge crash course in all of this recently I can say that what I have learned is that HIV is not what it used to be years ago when doctors and scientists did not know very much about this disease.

First, the understanding of the virus has come a long way from only 10 years ago.  They are predicting now that people who get HIV at 30 will live to 70 years old with the proper medication/treatment/check ups.  And that is with the knowledge science knows now...

The medication has also come a long way with new medications...
Medications work even better at keeping HIV suppressed then before and faster with less toxicity.

Scientists are also very close to what they consider a cure using different methods.  A few people in the world have already experienced being cured recently which has given science hope they can replicate it. 

Some companies like Sangamo and Calimmune are developing techniques that will modify the immune system cells to resist HIV for the most part.  New vaccines are also being tested like the one from Geovax which has "cured" SIV (basically HIV in monkeys) from 9 out of 16 monkeys.  They were able to do this after administering the vaccination and keeping them off medication.  That is a huge leap forward in cure research.  On top of all that, new tests are being done with drugs that have been found to completely eradicate HIV from cell cultures.  These drugs are now going into human trials. 

Basically the world has pooled together all of its resources and information to work hard on figuring out this problem and science has proven to make huge leaps in knowledge the same way technology has made huge leaps in just 10-20 years.

HIV, while definitely not a good thing to have, does have the world working on the problem and making huge strides at a fast pace.  Most scientists and doctors agree a cure or vaccination is likely to occur within the next 10 or 20 years.  Until then the medicine should be enough to keep HIV kept at bay while we wait for better options and hold hope strong.  If there is anything that is for sure, it is that the world moves forward with advancements at a fast pace on everything in technology and science.

08/09/2013  Diagnosed WB positive
08/20/2013  CD4-506(28%)  VL-10,800
09/12/2013  CD4-391(28%)  VL-14,900
09/17/2013  Start ART (Truvada + Tivicay)
10/11/2013  CD4-377(26%)  VL-UD
12/20/2013  CD4-590(??%)  VL-UD
03/18/2014  CD4-660(29%)  VL-UD
07/22/2014  CD4-613(29%)  VL-UD
08/01/2014   Start Phase 3 TAF (Truvada 2.0) Clinical Trial (TAF + Tivicay)
10/09/2014  CD4-498(29.5%) VL-UD
11/06/2014  CD4-600(30.2%) VL-UD
01/30/2015  CD4-529(31.3%) VL-UD
07/25/2015  CD4-742(36.5%) VL-UD
10/06/2015  CD4-765(28.9%) VL-UD
01/05/2016  CD4-907(33.1%) VL-UD
03/24/2016  CD4-770(33.5%) VL-UD
06/20/2016  CD4-850(35.4%) VL-UD

Dr. Mark Wainberg on Dolutegravir:
Video 1: https://youtu.be/wCXOgLJqJAY
Video 2: https://youtu.be/DKiaD7fHO-s

Offline mecch

  • Member
  • Posts: 13,455
  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2013, 06:22:45 pm »
You have a very gloomy outlook. It is difficult to assess your fears about your borther's current state of health and his prognosis for the future. Because we don't have the information. How long he has had HIV. What his current immune system state it.  What kind of access to care he will have, etc.
You should read up on the lessons on this site.  Most HIV+ people have a pretty good prognosis for regaining a normal lifestyle, but of course it depends on just how sick he is at the moment. And if he will enter regular medical care and do what is required to get better.
I hope as you learn more about HIV, you will see your mom's reaction for what it is,  wrong-headed, and unproductive. 

HIV is for the most part a STD, transmitted by sex, acquired by people doing what billions of people around the world do.  Your mother is being rather self-centered and melodramatic wondering what she did wrong, etc..  Nothing. She surely loved all her children and did her best, and an HIV infection has nothing to do with that, and no shame is involved.

Well, that might sound all too easy and pat.  And I'm not saying that to shame anyone.  These ideas about HIV being shameful are deeply ingrained in society and your mom's reaction to the diagnosis and the label are quite common.  As you can imagine, all sorts of things in life produce such reactions.  The culture. The family culture. Maybe religion. Etc.  I'm sure with time your family will move through the shock and shame and just realise its a serious disease with absolutely no moral import... 

The other challenge will be to learn about how treatable it is, so you can all eventually relax and not be worried to death about your brother dying or being seriously sick and in pain for the rest of his life.  This probably won't be the case..

Click through the menu at the top of this forum and start learning what its like - being newly diagnosed.  Treatment. etc...   When your brother gets his strength back, encourage him to log on here as well.

Education about the treatment of HIV and living with HIV takes awhile to take in, to assimilate and work into the nervous system. 

He's surely fortunate to have a family that cares and to have you -- such a loving, caring sister.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

  • Member
  • Posts: 13,455
  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2013, 06:27:25 pm »
If you care to post where you live, people can probably make some recommendation about where HIV/AIDS services might be accessed. 
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline karry

  • Member
  • Posts: 344
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2013, 06:49:37 am »
Hello. I understand how hard it must be for you and your family to accept your brother's diagnosis. I agree with Mecch that your mother is acting rather self centered here. His diagnosis has absolutely nothing to do with her parenting skills. Your brother needs your support now....not the feeling that he has done something to shame his family.

My family rallied around me with so much love when they learnt I had HIV. My mum raised me well. She is very proud of me. My sister thinks I am her role model. I was diagnosed in 2007.... my mum still says I am the perfect daughter.

Please give your brother support. Don't be ashamed of him.
Take it a day at a time....and be positive about it too!

Offline Stone

  • Member
  • Posts: 56
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2013, 07:10:07 am »
I guess the question I have is: "How does your brother feel about all of this?".  Please understand that I mean no disrespect here but it really wasn't your Dad's tale to tell nor is it yours.  Your brother is the one who has the virus and your brother should be the one who decides who knows and who doesn't.  My brother has not disclosed to some people that I believe should know and I think this has caused him harm due to the stress of maintaining the secret.  That being said, it is his deal and I need to respect his wishes.

Now if your brother gives you permission this is a whole new ball game.  Shout it from the roof tops!  The shame and stigma around this illness I believe are largely due to people feeling like they have to hide their diagnosis.  This only reinforces the idea that this disease is something to be ashamed of and it furthers the misconception that is still present.  What other disease or illness requires subterfuge?

I also think that a lot of people are stuck in the 80's which is not helping.  The media went crazy when this disease was initially discovered.  The public was led to believe that this disease could be spread by casual contact and even being in the same room with someone that had the disease was dangerous.  The resulting public hysteria, I believe, became deeply ingrained in society.  When the first antiviral medications came out the media provided very little coverage and there is almost nothing published in main stream media now so of course people have nothing to challenge their belief system.  The only thing that will turn this around is education.  How you get it, what can be done about it, and it is not the death sentence it used to be.

Your mother's statement about "what she did wrong" makes me think that perhaps your brother disclosed something about his lifestyle that your parents didn't know at the same time they found out about the HIV.  If that is indeed the case it is probably going to be a bit before she is ready to receive any education about HIV as she just got smacked with a double whammy.

All we can do is sit on our hands and provide silent support.  Well silent until somebody says something stupid. Then go for their throat!

Offline aaware72

  • Member
  • Posts: 226
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2013, 09:56:33 am »
I guess the question I have is: "How does your brother feel about all of this?".  Please understand that I mean no disrespect here but it really wasn't your Dad's tale to tell nor is it yours.  Your brother is the one who has the virus and your brother should be the one who decides who knows and who doesn't.  My brother has not disclosed to some people that I believe should know and I think this has caused him harm due to the stress of maintaining the secret.  That being said, it is his deal and I need to respect his wishes.

I agree with this here...
"Yes, knowledge is power. Self-knowledge brings mastery of one's body."

Offline newt

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,898
  • the one and original newt
Re: Brother tested +
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2013, 07:20:13 pm »
What Stone said.

No family expects an HIV diagnosis in their brethren, but there you, it happens, just like other things. It's just a virus, however bleak things look now, and probably the outcome will be good. Whether love trumps other family considerations  is the 6 million dollar question right now. You bro needs love, not saving face or anything else.

I have told the world I have HIV but not my bro, cos I need a space uncoloured by HIV. There is a lesson in this. << bro, if you read this, sorry

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"


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