3 thoughts on “The End of AIDS?

  1. Hi Silvia,
    I recently got diagnosed with HIV. I tried to kill myself straight after. Took a lot of pills and cut my writs. Well it failed but I have not seen a doctor or got a confirmatory test. I just can’t believe I have it as my boyfriend took a test and is negative and the guy who I had unprotected sex with and I thought contaminated me also took a test and his negative. I only had two other partners (on two occasions each) but we used a condom and there was no oral sex with ejaculation. So I am extremely confused. I hope I can carry on working. I am a junior lawyer and I have to work long hours, I have to repay a bank loan. Reading your blog gave me a be of hope. I also saw the come dine with me video. You are so healthy and beautiful that it makes me think that whatever the outcome I will be able to cope. The hard thing is that I am an orphan and that in terms of support system, I have brothers and sisters but I can’t rely on them as they usually rely on me. It is a long process I guess, it has only been 5 weeks. I still need to do another test, but I am scared and alone at the same time, I am busy at work and my contract is not permanent yet so I have to work a lot and focus. I am ok but at the weekend, when I am alone I think about things line now and I am miserable. I would like to correspond with you if that’s possible, I mean when you come back from the US obviously. Thanks for doing what you are doing.

  2. Dear Newbie,

    I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. If I understand correctly you had a home test, I would urge you to go to a clinic and have a confirmation test. Home tests are unreliable so you really need to confirm I know it may be devastating to learn you have HIV, but you cannot be sure unless you go to hospital. Moreover HIV is a totally manageable condition. With access to treatment support and care we have a normal life expectancy. I am on holiday in Italy with very limited access. But please let me know what happens to you because I am extremely worried for you.

    Lots of love and big hug!

    Silvia xxx

  3. Dear Silvia,

    I work in the HIV/AIDs research (vaccine R&D) field. I started a general blog recently that kind of goes through the shenanigans of working/getting a Ph.d. It’s opened up doors to seeing other perspectives from blogs (such as yours). It’s also really frustrated me, because I find that people have such vast and hurtful opinions and can be generally undereducated about subjects, yet still think it is ok to supplement false facts in with their opposing views. These sort of posts get caught in “interest catchers”, so they are broadcast in streams that should be designated for factual information on the disease and dealing with it. Having been in this profession for a few years now, I have become acquainted with the negative/taboo stigma that is (overly) false. It makes me sick to think that a mixture of inaccurate/opinionated blogs might have influence on an individuals thoughts, actions, or persistence in being safe or getting help. I could go on for hours, but I won’t. My last blog post covers this very topic. I don’t live with the infection.. I am just simply trying to help others fight it.

    But, as someone that looks at it from a scientific prospective every day, I want to clarify that I am constantly amazed by the progress. I wouldn’t spend my life doing something, if I didn’t believe that it was an endless circle. It’s unfortunate that current findings aren’t always divulged to the public (or even within the same field), because of the competitive nature of science and patents. It can be hard to hope for something when supporting information trickles out slowly.

    I love the fact that sharing stories through social media is a way to counteract some of the misrepresentations. I feel that it’s a safe haven for people to find information that they need and to be comforted. It’s unfortunate that some taint it, but the support is a far louder voice than the pessimism. For research- It’s small victories, but we aren’t losing the war. This is a great example of that: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/25/health/research/25aids.html . (Still learning so much from these trials). Some of the greatest hurdles for why we, as researchers, battle to find a common vaccine.. Can also be the greatest blessings to why people can maintain this disease. It’s a double edged sword.

    This is a long-winded comment, but for what it’s worth, I have hope. Every single day. Keep on keepin’ on. It means more than you know!

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