Being diagnosed to be HIV positive can be one of the toughest situations one can face in their life. Things become more difficult when they need to discuss the fact to their closed ones. For this reason, we have come up with a few tips that can help any HIV positive individuals to have things in control when they wish to disclose their HIV status to their loved ones.
Accept yourself first
Before you decide on disclosing your HIV status to anyone, be it your spouse, relatives, friends or cousins, you need to accept it yourself first. This is because if you cannot accept it yourself, then you cannot be mentally prepared or even expect others will accept it. It is fine and there is nothing to freak about. Just calm yourself down and accept we do not have control over all things.
Before you go out with your disclosure process, it is necessary for you to know more about HIV. That includes the potential causes, risks, treatments and any other fact that you can lay your hands on. This is necessary because you will be darted with many questions when you make your disclosure. You must be prepared to answer them all. But you should not accept defeat and apologize. You should maintain the positivity and be patient to deal with it.
Prepare for any reaction
You do not know how different people are going to react to your disclosure. It is thus necessary to be prepared with all kinds of reaction. When you are ready to accept anything, you are already a step ahead. This is because it can provide you more mental strength to deal with their reactions. Instead of getting tensed to their reactions, you must be prepared for it. This can help you to deal with things better and, to make your disclosure easier. Realize this is something none of your relatives can expect and they are obviously going to freak out. Be ready for they may even start judging you.
Talk to your supports
Talk to the other HIV positive individuals. This can help you to know what to expect and how to deal with them. They can even share their own experiences and provide you with suggestions and ideas to make your disclosure process easier. As they have all been through the same situation, they know how it feels. They are going to be your best support network when things turn against you.
Choose the right place and time
Be patient. It is the key to almost everything in the world. Wait for the right situation and the right place before making your disclosure. Consider the situation you would prefer to make your disclosure as well as the state of mind of your audience. This can help you bypass significant avoidable situations and prevent these situations from setting you in the disclosure process.
Choose the right words
While it is common for your folks to freak out on your disclosure, choosing the right words can save you some pain. The most important part of the process being self-acceptance, you need to decide on which words suits the best. You may turn to your support network for the same or just write down your words and check if they are apt enough. If you are too nervous, you can even go for a rehearsal. If you are disclosing your HIV status to your spouse or someone you are dating, let them decide the flow of your relation. Don’t apologize for being HIV positive. Let them make the choice of what they want to do and how they want to deal with the relation and their sex life.
Take one person at a time
Do not go on blurting your HIV process to everyone at once. You cannot keep up with their reactions or their questions. It is best to go for a one-on-one disclosure if you want to avoid unwanted and uncomfortable situations. Choose to talk about your status to one person at a time.
HIV has been one of the most controversial topics over the past decade. This was mainly because the concept of being HIV positive or negative and how it affects the lives of others was not clear enough. But with the progress of time as science made more advancement, people today have learned the details of what was once considered to be an untouchable infectious epidemic. Though it has been much widely accepted throughout the world, being HIV positive can still affect their lives big time. More than the impact on their health, it is their mind and psyche that are affected the most. Everything from their day to day life to their relationships can be turned upside down.
But when it comes to a relationship, you are offered with a lot of reasons that makes it a better option to date HIV positive men. Be it you are straight or gay, dating an HIV positive man has a lot of benefits. When you choose to date HIV positive gay men, you can expect a lot of compassion and rationale from them. This is mainly because they have all been through the same situation. It may be that they were HIV positive from before that urged them to be gay, or they just have a liking for the same sex and later on found out that they were HIV positive, but they have all faced the same things from the world – discretion and avoidance from all those around them before LGBT was widely accepted by the law in recent times.
Do you have an HIV positive gay partner?
Ask him about is life. There are a lot of things that will be new to you. They can even provide you with a better explanation about how their life actually is and factors have resulted in the conditions they today are in. Once you get to know them, there are hardly any chances that you cannot feel any compassion for them. You may be straight, you may be gay as well but that does not matter. While the risks involved with dating an HIV positive man are few, there are many benefits.
The best part is serosorting is not smart anymore. Rather it is stupidity to choose your partner on the basis of their HIV status and a gay man can provide you with the best explanations for the same.
Why date HIV positive men?
With HIV positive men now spread widely across the globe, finding them is not an issue anymore. Every year many parties are organized for HIV positive individuals – male and female, gay and straight and one can easily find someone they think they will gel up with. They will not harm anyone, not even their partners who are not HIV positive as well. Also, being on constant medication, they are the safest partner you can have all to yourself. They also have an added knack for adventuring out sex and are quite wild about it. The most important benefit about dating an HIV positive man is that they know the importance of solid communication and will never leave you out and can do anything that any other guy can.
Benefits of dating HIV positive men
The main reasons to date an HIV positive man include:
- The disease is not transmittable, that means HIV positive men will not be going around spreading the disease.
- Having gone through the same phase during their life, they are more open and frank. They know the world better and can rationalize the world to great extents.
- Once they disclose about being HIV positive to you, there are hard chances that they are going to cheat or ditch in the relationship.
You can find a lot of HIV positive individuals living happily in gay relationships. Not only they enjoy each other’s company to such an extent that they forget all their worries, but also have faced the same things, they understand each other better. They are more empathetic as they can relate things to their own lives much faster. Also, based on similar types of experience, it is possible for them to provide you with the best suggestions on how to deal with your current problem.
The HIV infection rate through sexual activity is rather low. But in special scenes, the rate could significantly rise up to 312 times. Acute infection could expeditiously raise the amount of the virus in your body at the first 12 weeks. The chance of infect others then rises for more than 26 times. The presence of other STD could significantly lower your immune level and also raise your virus amount on genital and blood parts. This could multiply the risk by 8 times. And sexual discrimination, especially towards the female, could lead to a 1.5 times rise of HIV infection rate.
The rate of HIV transmission through sex is so low? According to poz’s statistical analysis, the infection rate of each sexual activity are as below:
Among all the sexual intercourse we often participate between couples, the action that could lead to the highest HIV infection rate is receptive partner’s risk with ejaculation through anal sex with 1 in 70 or 1.43%. The number is, rather low compared to our general impression towards HIV infection -- we thought unprotected sex participation with HIV positive people could easily lead to infection.
No, unless there are wounds and body fluid transmission.
The HIV infection rate through blood transfusion is as high as an astonishing 90%. Thus, if there are wounds and body fluid transmission during the unprotected anal sex with ejaculation--which is not rare the case--the infection become an event of high probability.
Yet, that is far from the hidden movement of the virus.
If you are HIV negative, and your partner happen to be “recently infected”--people who contracted the virus within the last 12 weeks-- your chance of getting infected could rise as much as 26 times! The situation states because the newly transmitted virus start a fast expansion in the amount within your body, thus the number and activity level of the HIV virus in the recently infected people are of a significantly high level.
Another scene which could lead to an 8 times rise of the chance of HIV infection, is when you are simultaneously positive on other STDs. That will also put your immune system to an unguarded level to HIV virus invasion.
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People with HIV can lead a normal life and live to a ripe old age. Of course, if HIV-positive will have access to appropriate therapy. Currently, the most effective method of treatment of HIV in the world is antiretroviral therapy (ART).
Features of the Disease
The main feature of antiretroviral therapy is that within six months after medication, the level of virus in the blood is greatly reduced. The therapy should begin as soon as possible - immediately after people learned of his HIV-positive status. Previously held the opinion that drugs should be postponed until the time when the level of the virus reaches a critical level, which will be a real threat to the human immune system. To obtain lasting results, the supplementation should occur regularly throughout a person's life. In fact, HIV is a disease for life. If left untreated, the disease will progress and will eventually turn into AIDS. If you do not control HIV, it will multiply in the body, killing off CD4 cells and weakening the immune system. First, you can even to feel normal, but if HIV is not treated, it eventually destroys the immune system, which will lead to the development of severe disease and death. If you have HIV, you need regular take blood two tests:
- Test to determine viral load, which shows the amount of virus circulating in the blood.
- Analysis of CD4, which shows how the immune system works.
Early Treatment of HIV
The early treatment gives HIV to progress quickly and prevents the further destruction of the immune system. Early treatment helps to maintain health and live longer. If you have HIV, a treatment called antiretroviral (ARV) therapy can slow down the virus and reduce the damage to the body. ARV-therapy is sometimes known as VAARU therapy, which means "highly active antiretroviral therapy". Currently, HIV medicines are easier to take and have fewer side effects. If you begin to take antiviral therapy at an early stage, it may reduce the likelihood of developing AIDS and other serious illnesses that causes HIV. Antiretroviral therapy also reduces the likelihood of transmitting HIV to others.
Myths about HIV Treatment
- "Why should I be treated, if I feel well?” This is a wrong statement. There is no need to wait for degradation to begin treatment. The early treatment of ARVs helps to maintain high CD4 counts and low viral load. Antiretroviral therapy helps protect the body from infections and other diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, liver diseases, kidney and some types of cancer.
- "I have a high CD4 there is no need for treatment." This is incorrect. There is no need to wait until the CD4 counts will be too low. Currently, doctors recommend starting therapy when the CD4 count becomes less than 500. Treatment can be useful even in that case if there are more than 500. Discuss with your doctor how best to proceed in your particular situation.
- "I'm pregnant, so I should postpone the treatment." Pregnant women with HIV should start treatment immediately. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, ARV therapy will help to improve health and significantly reduce the likelihood of transmitting HIV to your baby.
- "And so I lead a healthy lifestyle. I exercise and eat right. Cost without treatment." To fight the virus can only be special treatment. It is critical that people living with HIV, their health care, but only ARV therapy to control HIV infection due to the weakening of the virus and strengthening the immune system. And the stronger your immune system is, the longer you live and feel better.
- "The treatment is very expensive, will have to do without him." You will find help in your AIDS center! Early treatment helps to maintain health and to live longer.
Other factors that help to maintain health:
- Proper nutrition and physical activity.
- Quitting Smoking.
- Treatment of depression, alcohol or drug dependence.
- Can't be too careful. During sex, use a latex condom, reduce the number of partners and never use shared needles and syringes. Even if your viral load is low, HIV transmission is possible.
- Regular testing for other sexually transmitted diseases. The presence of other STDs complicates the treatment of HIV.
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