After being diagnosed with HIV 6 years ago it's been a long time accepting this.
It is an ongoing process because there are always new situations that arise and challenge my thinking! I decided to become a volunteer for Terrence Higgins Trust, and have regularly challenged myself by attending all sorts of group settings as a positive speaker: schools, colleges, youth groups, NHS training sessions and much more.
Standing in front of an audience and announcing that I have HIV is the weirdest thing, but if I am going to help break down the stigma that surrounds this subject and encourage others to use condoms, I feel it is essential to the cause for stopping the spread of HIV and other STIs.
Being a positive speaker has helped me to admit the fact to myself, and through being open and honest with others I made them think about HIV and how it affects others. But most importantly, I've found that talking to people about HIV has changed their views.
The more changes of stigma... The better!
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Various people talk about their experiences of living with HIV.
CAB - Citizens Advice Bureau
HIV Drug Interactions
George House Trust
Equality and Human Rights Commission
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