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Dave

Then came an epiphany - I talked to my friends and told them everything I was feeling. I cried a lot both with them and alone.

I had a fairly good gay life, and was always happy that I was gay. I came out to my family when I was 25 and there were no great traumas about that. I grew up in rural Herefordshire, but moved to Dundee, Bristol and eventually the bright lights of manchester in 1999.

I came out to my family when I was 25 and there were no great traumas about that. I grew up in rural Herefordshire, but moved to Dundee, Bristol and eventually the bright lights of Manchester in 1999.

I thought I was invincible, that maybe I was immune? Then in 2003 at the age of 38 I started getting really bad rashes and fever. It was on 19th February 2003, 6.30pm that I was diagnosed with HIV and HepB. 

I had a little weep and got on with it. I stayed in work and came to terms with it all quite well. I already had a few HIV+ friends and they were a great help and support. I joined gaydar as Pozclone, deciding that i was going to be open about my status from the start.

I started treatment in 2005 and it was trouble free and I continued to have a good life, although my sexual partners tended to be also HIV+ - it was easier and guilt-free.

Then in 2008 another bombshell. I had HepC as well. Things started to deteriorate, not so much physically but mentally. I began to feel isolated, dirty and felt I'd never have a relationship again.

It all came to a head just before Christmas last year. I didn't like to be touched, was afraid of guys picking me up and had stopped eating almost altogether, I had no appetite and food tasted bland. I got down to about 10 stone. I felt so depressed. My HepC treatment didnt work and there wasn't anything I could do. Everything seemed so dire.

Then came an epiphany - I talked to my friends and told them everything I was feeling. I cried a lot both with them and alone. Within a day or so it was like a weight had been taken off me. I began to feel hungry and started eating again and food tasted nice!

I started talking to guys I'd been with since my HepC diagnosis - a lot of what I was feeling was guilt - I had an extra secret. Their reactions were wonderful and supportive and none of them tested positive for HepC.

In February 2011 I updated my gaydar profile to include my HepC status and I've had a great response from guys who want to know more and other guys who are going through the same thing. It's a new start.

share your own story of hiv


Read another story: Ian's story ››

 

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