A positive diagnosis of HIV and I’m stripped of my identity. I’m no longer a person but a case, a number to be polled or studied, tracked by a system that doesn’t always have my back – a system that speaks of double standards and hypocrisy. If called to question we will look over your rights of privacy because those three little letters carry more weight than it really should be – those three little letters that everyone is afraid to say despite not knowing the meaning, yet it’s better to know than not to.
Most people after an HIV diagnosis give up because Society has given up on them. Services, services, services … oh how they draw you in and never encourage you to get off your behind and dream to live another day. Yeah back in the day it was a death sentence but now it’s treated like high blood pressure. A pill a day can take the symptoms away and cause you to be undetectable. But what does that truly mean? A body under attack is fighting hard to keep the virus at bay using the meds to keep everyone I know safe every day. Any action I choose that would normally spread HIV is now something that doesn’t bother me.
But ohhhh that system that we oh so love – yeah – it’s one of hypocrisy and shame that doesn’t care and just looks for someone to blame. This society we live in is a glutton for punishment ESPECIALLY when people act out of fear, like not telling your partner your HIV status is punishable by up to 30 years even with transmission not being possible if you take your meds.
Why is society so quick to judge?
Did you hear me? Why is society so quick to judge….
The unknown. How can we have so many dumb smart people in the world? We listen to others without doing our own research to know the truth for ourselves. Condemnation is much too swift if you ask the right questions to protect yourself. But why when we’re protecting you too. By our seeking treatment we should be given admiration and respect for protecting those around us, yet we’re ostracized and made fun of and brought before court like we’re villains in a movie because those three little letters that took over our life is now who society thinks we are. A case, a number, something to be followed because now society has stripped me of my rights.
I am now HIV. But what does that truly mean?
Get the facts. Know your status. Get tested. Seek treatment.
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iSlay Movement is a researcher in the College of Medicine and a person living with HIV/AIDS. Her pseudonym is used to protect her identity.