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Author Topic: Just tested Positive - Aus  (Read 2775 times)

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Offline Zenyata

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Just tested Positive - Aus
« on: August 22, 2018, 03:21:08 am »
It's not like me to post in such a place but I really wanted to put my thoughts in writing about what's been a very difficult realization.
I am in my early 20's from Australia and a month ago I tested positive for HIV. I was always very aware of STD's and was very careful who I hooked up with and could probably count on one hand how many people I hooked up with each year. I was always terrified of getting an STD and got tested every three months.
Six months ago I met a guy and we became best friends. We did everything together and hung out all the time. A few nights we engaged in oral sex but never had sex and this was the only person I had hooked up with this year. I got tested in April which was negative and in June I got tested again and to my shock it came back HIV positive. My DR was certain it was my friend as I told him it simply isn't possible [It was only oral!]. He knew as I was going through seroconversion and there was no other explanation. My friend got tested and he had HIV. I was numb and didn't know how to feel but I didn't want to go on with life anymore. All my aspirations seemed like a thing of the past and I felt scared of myself.
One month has passed and my treatment is going well, I got diagnosed in the acute period which is incredibly early and started treatment straight away and I am almost undetectable already.
I think about it everyday and wish I could change what has happened and I struggle to see my future. One thing that upsets me is I have told no one but a friend far away. I don't know how I am going to date people again and don't think I could handle telling a stranger or potential partner I have HIV. I'm scared about going to the dentist, not being able to travel and opportunist infections. I hate that I can't change it or do anything to get rid of it and now I rethink every decision I have made in my life that led to this exact event.
Is anyone in a similar position to me and has any advice around disclosure and life after diagnoses.
I apologies for the long story I just wanted to get it out. I have contracted what I was so afraid of for so many years. I'm a very positive guy and I'll keep smiling but I feel like I've lost a part of me I won't ever get back.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 03:48:03 am by Zenyata »

Offline JimDublin

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2018, 03:55:17 am »
Welcome to the forum, sorry to hear about the diagnosis but I understand that its a recent exposure Feb onwards and glad to hear your on treatment already and nearly undetectable.

OI's not sure why your worrying about that, your on treatment and it will suppress the virus so it can no longer cause damage to your immune system

It sounds all in all like you are still digesting the news, this is pretty common.

Your positive HIV status is not a reason to dith your aspirations, many people live full & fulfilling lives with manageable conditions, HIV being just one of them for some.

As for disclosure, bit of a wide topic. Do you mean family, friends, doctor's or sexual partners?

There is a lesson written up on disclosure that goes through the various disclosures and gives some tips.

https://www.poz.com/basics/hiv-basics/disclosure

My own advice is you have a manageable medical condition and outside of your healthcare providers its not really anyone elses business, with the exception perhaps to sexual relationships depending on the relationship and any local laws.

My own experience is life goes on, my hiv status changes nothing, dating happens, sex happens, career goes on etc etc

Take it easy

Jim




« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 04:10:41 am by JimDublin »
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Offline daveR

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2018, 02:50:14 pm »
Sorry to read about your positive test result, and to see you are struggling to accept it. I think almost everybody has the same reaction and it does take a while to sink in. My diagnosis was just over 2 years ago and I admit I do think about it everyday, I have to because of the meds, but it no longer bothers me. You will eventually take it in your stride like the rest of us.

Do not concern yourself with how you caught it as it is irrelevant, just accept the fact that you have caught it, you were diagnosed early and on effective modern day treatment which ensures you a normal life span and life style. Sports, travel and everything else is still there for you. I have no idea what Australian law is regarding HIV but I should imagine you will be well protected when it comes to employment and discrimination.

Disclosure is not easy I have to admit. Think about it carefully as once you have told someone it is out there. Other than my specialist the only other person who knows is my wife, I go by the principle that the smaller the circle of people who know, the better. If you meet someone you are thinking about spending your life with then honesty is the best policy, but for casual encounters then have faith in the U=U mandate and keep it to yourself. You are not harming anybody else.

I hope things improve for you
Dave

Offline harleymc

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2018, 09:31:13 pm »
G'day Zenyatta,

Don't worry, you'll date again,  go to the dentist, and maybe get a tattoo or three. 

Life doesn't change a great deal once your treatments are working to supress your viral load.

Many of the Australian states have 1980's type of laws around HIV and or other transmissible infections. Counterproductively these laws require us to disclose our HIV status prior to sex.  Treat it as a formality,  I just stick it in my dating profiles, anyone who contacts me has automatically been informed without me opening my mouth.

Here's to a long and happy life.

regards Harley




Offline filopoz

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2018, 09:35:34 am »
Hi Zenyata.
Almost a year ago when I got diagnosed as HIV+ and like you, I am also surprised cause I never get involved in unprotected sex. However, there's a possibility of condom breakage, etc....but I realised that what is important is what to do with my condition. So I started treatment on the day that I got the confirmatory result. I have many worries back then cause I just finish uni and still job hunting. We are lucky here in Australia cause we can get meds and support for free ( or with co-payment of around 38 dollars for my 2 months supply). Fast forward, I've got a job after 1.5 months from that day and have travelled places (including overseas). I've been undetectable also in less than a month of treatment and started dating again 8 months after I become undetectable. You will be fine just focus on things you can control...i.e. taking your meds, eat healthy, exercise, meet new and old friends.

Offline Zenyata

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2018, 09:18:35 pm »
Hello all,

Thank you for taking the time to respond and share your experiences. I am feeling a lot better and getting on with my life. I canít say I donít think about it everyday but life does go on!

Iíve only told one very close friend so still havenít really got back out there with dating. If anyone has any stories of how they go about dating and how they met their partners in this situation I would love to hear and learn from it :). Itís sometimes hard dealing with it alone and I would love to tell someone but Iím taking my time in making that decision.

Does anyone know of any good ways to meet other hiv individuals without using the programs in place by government and doctor clinics.

Offline Irish Eyes

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2018, 10:16:48 pm »
Life will go on, and the whole thing becomes routine. Blood draws twice a year and seeing doctor bi-annually and taking a tablet daily. I couldnt tell you when i was diagnosed (unless I referred back to something). When I get my blood results, I used to forward to a friend on here for him to decipher and compare. CD4, CD8, what's CD8 ? And the percentages? IDK.
Pop a pill see the doc.
(perhaps cavalier, perhaps human nature, life is busy)
 
Disclosure is always an issue.
My immediate family and old friends are totally oblivious, I'm still the same person, I'm not going to be having sex with any of them. They don't need to know.
As for dentist ? They have their own medical precautions in place and there hasn't been a mention of sex there :-/

Anyone I've dated or met since dx have become some of my best friends, and are all gay too, so the topic occasionally comes up in casual conversation, and if comfy with situation and those present, I've no issue disclosing.

No doubt you have Grindr.
Contrary to popular belief, I've met some of the nicest people there, one of whom I consider my closest/bestest friend (and there has never been anything even vaguely sexual between us).

Because we're together so much, if I go into the local grocery store alone, the cashier will ask where is he, if he's ok?.
Yes he's OK he's at home in his house.
They think we're a couple and don't believe when I say we're just friends.

You just have to have a strong constitution and weed out the dubious.

10/30/13          Exposure
Mid-Nov-Jan    Seroconversion (7-8 rough wks)
12.26.2013      WB dx. HIV+
02.01.2014      OraQuick (result Negative?)
01.31.2014      VL 250700
02.03.2014      CD4  491  26%
02.26.2014      CD4  503  26%
03.05.2014      HLA B6701  not present
03.18.2014      VL 530873 (typical fluctuation)
03.21.2014      Start Stribild
04.14.2014      VL 104 after 24 doses
05.12.2014      VL 129 after 52 doses
06.10.2014      CD4 940 32%
06.11.2014      VL 87
07.22.2014      VL 20
09.23.2014      VL 43
11.26.2014      CD4 1350 33%
01.26.2015.     VL 27
01.26.2015      VL <20
06/03/2015      VL 28
06/03/2015      CD4 1135 42%
12/10/2015      VL 27
12/10/2015      CD4 1111 36% cd8+tcell 1058 34%
06/23/2016      VL 49
06/23/2016      CD4 1255 41% cd8+tcell 882 29%

Offline harleymc

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2018, 12:21:49 am »
Does anyone know of any good ways to meet other hiv individuals without using the programs in place by government and doctor clinics.

Meeting...  try The Institute of Many (TIM) they are an informal PLWHIV group that have spread to many states in the last couple of years. They have a public and a private Facebook page and groups.

 In NSW there is also Positive Life and there would be similar bodies in other states.

Positive Life and equivalent interstate bodies are NOT set up by government.  They were founded by and are run by PLWHIVs even if they receive some funding to conduct certain programs.

What state are you in?







Offline Zenyata

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2018, 01:20:13 am »
Victoria Harley,

Thereís a few programs here.. I think my DR may have recommended one which I think is the same as the one you mentioned below - I didnít end up going though as there was a lot of information at first.

Are you also from Australia?

Offline harleymc

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Re: Just tested Positive - Aus
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2018, 11:50:51 pm »
I'm from north of the Rio Murray.

 


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