Dear KD: I Have A Condition Over Status And Family

Dear KD: I Have A Condition Over Status And Family

FOREWORD: This is a follow-up on the idea of support proposed by Sensei. The idea is taking off. The official email address is kds.system14@gmail.com.

And this is a call for anyone who would like to volunteer as part of this virtual support system. The support system is comprised of three categories: members of the gaybourhood who are struggling with their HIV positive status, those recovering from Kito attacks, and those suffering from bouts of depression.

If you intend to volunteer as a counselor, simply send a mail to the address above, indicating your interest and which category you want to play a part in.

And if you are a brother (or sister) suffering through any of these three phases, kindly send a mail to the address above, and we’ll do our best to get you the help you deserve.

The KD Support System is all set, guys, let’s make it count.

And now, on to today’s post

*

I am HIV positive. And it is only my caregiver, lecturer friend, my counselor, and few select friends who know. My family is in the dark about my status, although they are aware that I gulp down pills at 10pm every night, and that I go for routine checkups every now and then.

However, my mum is starting to raise dust about the side effects I display of the ‘pills’ I’m taking. And I seem to have started ‘wasting’.

My caregivers attribute it to my worrying about my family finding out, and they have advised me to reveal my status to them, maybe even come out to them, in order for me to have my peace of mind. I have dealt with the initial shock and depression that comes with the knowledge of my status, but I do not think I’ll be able to deal with any stigma from my family over this issue.

I’m not strong enough. I need help and direction on what to do.

Submitted by Pisces

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63 Comments

  1. McGray
    January 05, 03:45 Reply

    Oh dear Pisces, i understand how u r feeling right now but i must be sincere with u, u hv to be strong and tell ur people abt ur status. Dn’t hv in mind that they wil welcome u or accept u or understand u or any of those shii, just prepare for the worst and i tell u u might be surprised at the reaction u will get from them. Just be strong for yourself and us KD.

  2. simba
    January 05, 03:49 Reply

    Dear Pisces, u will be fine.. It depends in de side effects ur experiencing, I guess anorexia which would result to weight loss.. I believe ur caregivers are professionals, and they are doing a good job which would have resulted in decrease of ur viral load and ( not wasting as a result of the virus).. therefore I suggest u enrol in a fitness club (gym) and make new friends.. gym would increase ur love for urself, appetite, it may change ur current perspective abt urself.. then new friends may cause a distraction for u…. thanks…
    PS… pls I need everybody to pray for me.. am depressed and self harming ( not suicidal) lastly Pinky I ll write in to de email,when I overcome my current ish cus am in a dark place now

    • Samurai
      January 05, 04:52 Reply

      Simba, I’m a master at banishing dark clouds. No exaggerations.
      Come to me, and your sun will shine through.

      • simba
        January 05, 06:06 Reply

        Thanks I ll be grateful if pinky will give me ur contact or give u mine.. thanks

    • Peak
      January 05, 08:27 Reply

      Bobo simba, Pls hang in there. I Noticed u haven’t left a comment here 4 almost a week now. Praying for u dear. U will get through this just hang in there and ride the storm through.
      * a big warm hug 4 Simba*

      • simba
        January 05, 12:17 Reply

        This brought tears to my eyes @ peak… thanks dear.. I owe u huge.. thanks

  3. Samurai
    January 05, 05:03 Reply

    Pisces, it’s good you already have a good support system at work in your life right now.
    But you have to really look into the reasons why you’re apprehensive about letting your family know. Analyze those reasons properly and then make a stand for the sake of your own peace of mind.

    Nothing gets someone emaciated as when the person is constantly restless.
    Ask yourself what you need to do in order to arrive at this peace of mind we’re talking about. If you feel not telling your family will do it for you, fine.

    But if you feel you need to tell them but you’re afraid of their reactions, then you just have to overcome that fear. Just tell them your status. If you’re still not okay telling them about your sexuality, leave that one out of the picture for now until you’re ready for that.

    Like Simba said, the rigors of “gym-ing” will help restore your appetite for eating well. You may not necessarily use a gym but you can find any physically-challenging exercise. They will do the trick.

    Your family will surely understand. They’ll be shocked at first. But they’ll surely come around.

  4. Max
    January 05, 05:36 Reply

    Telling your family is probably the best thing you can do right now. You can tell them about your status but not sexuality because they’ll attribute it to that.
    After all said and done, family is family. You might be surprised how they’ll react. The mind is very powerful and I understand what you’re going through, the weight loss might just be you over-thinking unnecessarily. Just free your mind, tell them, make new friends and be happy.
    You’ll be fine.. *hugs

    • trystham
      January 05, 09:08 Reply

      Family is NOT just family. Family is whom you choose to make family. No go out urself out of ur family house o. I just think you need to talk about it more with those friends so they can help you unburden. BTW, those friends of yours had better behave. They are supposed to keep cheering you up to the point of patronage (that’s no bull). If all those roitine tests say nothing contrary, You will be fine my dear.

  5. Dennis Macauley
    January 05, 07:23 Reply

    I am not an expert on issues concerning dealing with HIV, so I will leave that to the social workers and the physicians.

    However as Dennis Macaulay, I will NOT tell my family. Maybe have a few friends who know and who will be a good support system. Telling my family? NO!

    Like a said, this is my personal opinion and its not a recommendation. I am just saying what i would do!

    • pinkpanthertb
      January 05, 08:14 Reply

      At the end of the day, family is wherever you find unconditional love. Whether its ‘a few friends’ who give that to you, or your biological family, wherever you get that love and support from is where you need to lean on. HIV is certainly not a lonely man’s ailment. A support system cant be stressed enough.

      • gad
        January 05, 08:52 Reply

        That most be a new and elastic definition of family.

    • Dennis Macauley
      January 05, 08:57 Reply

      @gad YES!

      Family is not always defined by blood ties. That is what PP is trying to say, which I am sure you already know.

  6. Chizzie
    January 05, 07:32 Reply

    Wasting? These pills you are taking, are they ART? Wasting is a sure sign that one is advancing from HIV to AIDS when their CD4 count is below 200 or so right? But if you have commenced ART then you shouldn’t be wasting? Or Maybe the weight loss is as a result of some other underlying illness? I wish you’d expanciate abit on that.

    I think you should open up to your family. I met a charming Kenyan man last year who works for a gay international NGO and is also a HIV/AIDS counselor. I told him I had a friend who is HIV positive and asked for his advice, and the first thing he told me to do was tell my friend to tell his family.

    According to him, Family support is crucial and imperative because this is unfortunately a life long illness, you need moral backing from people who would remain in your life forever and thats your family. And at the end of the day it does feel like a huge weight is off your shoulder and thats good for your immune system. it might be hard and they might freak out, but thats left for you to educate them.

    I’m still puzzled as to why you are wasting though. All the best

    • pinkpanthertb
      January 05, 08:09 Reply

      Its a thing of the mind. Drugs can only go so far in helping rehabilitate a HIV patient. But if you don’t have your peace of mind, it takes its toll on your person.

  7. Masked Man
    January 05, 07:33 Reply

    Nothing like family. In the end, they’ll still have your back. Initially, it might be difficult, but you’ll be glad you did. It’s their shit to deal with, not yours, cos you’ve moved on.

  8. Vhar.
    January 05, 07:43 Reply

    Tell your Family.

    You told us.
    Tell them.

    • Samurai
      January 05, 08:11 Reply

      He told us because we don’t know him personally and may never get to know him personally.

      There are certain things you will find very easy to tell a stranger but very difficult to tell your family or your Significant Other.

      • Vhar.
        January 05, 09:43 Reply

        Very valid point.
        He has real family.

        I’ll say this.
        My mother is tough as nuts.
        That didn’t stop her from loving me when I came out to her.
        About my Sexuality.

        You never know.
        Get over the fear.
        Find Peace.

        • gad
          January 05, 16:54 Reply

          Is it really necessary to tell ones family and friends about ones sexuality? Of what use is it? Why can’t sleeping dogs be left to lie? When trouble leaves you alone why not leave trouble alone? Do straight guys come out to their family and loved ones too?

      • Lord II
        January 05, 18:59 Reply

        Ahahhahahahhahahha Gad the str8ts don’t need to come out to anybody…its assumed and expected and therefore not news…the news however is that you are the opposite of your natural sex ‘ INSIDE ‘…so!

        • gad
          January 05, 19:25 Reply

          Thanks but you left the major question unanswered. What does one stand to achieve by this coming out?

      • Lord II
        January 05, 20:26 Reply

        Am with u 100%…..in fact if you look at my other comment I don’t think he should rush into coming out to his family. However. Mark my words if he ventures to tell them NOW about his HIV status they would definite wanna know how come….and even if he lies….ehm it might just get worse when they eventually find out about his sexuality.

  9. Peak
    January 05, 08:17 Reply

    Pisces dear, I’m clueless on how to handle a. Situation like this if I am ever faced with it.
    I would advice u clear ur mind, engage in things that would bring u joy and like simba said, the gym would do u a lot of good

  10. victor
    January 05, 08:38 Reply

    As much as it would be nice to have his family support we would still like to know how educated the family are on HIV and if they know he is gay. They might accept him cause they are family but discriminate against him especially if they know that he is gay.

  11. Dimkpa
    January 05, 08:39 Reply

    Dear Pisces,
    There are two issues here. One is obviously about disclosure to your family. I think it is the wise thing to do and I appreciate the difficulty involved but don’t underestimate their capacity to love. It is sad that in our families children are given the impression that love is contingent on good behaviour and achievement but be assured that your parents may be sad but will support you.
    I suggest having your counselor around when you do or take them with you to a doctor’s appointment. He could help with answering the questions they may have and dispelling myths.
    Secondly I think the wasting should be looked into further. Unfortunately there isn’t enough information here to make conclusions on that. What drugs are you taking? How long have you been on them? Has there been improvements in your CD4 count or viral load since you started them? It could be the medication is not effective and you need to change. Like someone said wasting despite the drugs could be a sign of progression.
    Are you experiencing nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea? They could be side effects of the drugs and may require management or change of medication.
    Have you been eating or do you have loss of appetite? These could be managed too. There are medication and high nutrient supplements available for that.
    Wasting could also result from other illnesses associated with HIV, some which are a bit serious like the lymphomas.
    I think the point is you need to speak with your physician about this. Your counselor would also help, depression could also cause anorexia.
    Be strong and know that you will smile again.

  12. KyrxxX
    January 05, 09:10 Reply

    Depression nd worrying too much can waste u more than a knife cut to d jugular. Its not d best feeling ever, I have been there. As long as ur drugs r on a regular, I see nothing to worry about. Ppl with heart related ish nd other diseases take drugs everyday, they r still alive nd healthy looking.
    As for family, I know their love is unconditional but know d kind of family nd d ppl in it b4 divulging anything. My kind of family would kill me with their mouths first nd still tell u it is out of love! Love keh! Love gbakwa oku!

  13. Reverend Hot
    January 05, 09:11 Reply

    It all boils down to that. I believe you shouldn’t tell your family though, it will only make them even more convinced that being gay has ruined your life.

    But if this, dare I say – burden is really breaking ou, I suggest you tell them. Knowing you are positive might make them a little lighter on you.

    But the best advice I can give you is to pray. I know it may sound funny but its true. But I believe God loves everyone of us. Gay or straight or transexual or bisexual….. Hell! Even Asexual!!

    There’s no right or wrong answer to what you are asking. But something tells me you already know THE PERFECT answe. You’re just too scared to go through it…..

  14. gad
    January 05, 09:11 Reply

    I understand your worries and fears however telling or not telling your family depends on a number of factors. You know your family members more than we do. Are they unreasonably judgemental? Are the unconditionally loving and supportive? Can they keep your secrets secret? The answers to this question will determine the steps to take. I don’t know much about HIV but I know it’s not a death sentence.Exercise more.Please note that manual labour is not the same as exercise.Eat well especially fruits and vegetables. I’m not an expert on anything but if it’s okay by you we can talk privately about other concerns you have. The kd support group is a welcome development. Though I have my fears but God is on the throne. He makes all things beautiful in His time

  15. celebdoa
    January 05, 09:40 Reply

    hi dear, the thing is if you know your fanily so well and you think,its gonna be a major war btw u guys then i think you should take it easy and finf the roght time to tell them maybe in the nesrest future. you can also try talking abt hiv, enlighten them bfore letting them knw will do more gopd than harm. good luck with it…

  16. chestnut
    January 05, 09:42 Reply

    Pisces,they’ve said it all. For peace of mind,u just have to tell ur family about ur status. Weight loss isn’t a side-effect of ARV drugs; on the contrary,proper use of the (right) drugs (for u) should promote a generally more robust picture of health. If all other possibly underlying causes of emaciation have been ruled out, then it might be as a result of the mental stress u have from not telling ur family, and feeling bad about having to live with the virus. I know it’s easier said than done,but u hav to overcome the depression u feel for having to be “HIV-positive”.it is not the end of the world and won’t stop u from living a normal, healthy, long life. Join a support group; when u see and hear stories of older members of the group,u’ll realise that life remains normal!
    But support from family will lift u even more. As max said,ur family is ur family and they can’t disown u for having an infection. Tell them,they’ll be sad at first,but it’ll blow over and they’ll give u support and love,which will in turn give u inner-peace and happiness.
    I wouldn’t suggest u tell them about ur sexuality just yet,though. It will be a harder blow for them, and u can predict their reaction to it (might be good,might be bad,but u can’t tell for sure). If anyone is going to come out to their folks,I think it’s best done when u’re independent enought to afford ur own house-rent and daily meals,without having to ask anybody.
    It is well with u dear. Just try to get it into ur mind that u have a status and not a sickness (some ppl have AA genotype, others have AS; some ppl have a Rhesus-positive status,som ppl have a Rhesus-negative status;some ppl hav a HIV-positive status, others have a HIV-negative status…these should all be seen as harmless variations in human physiology).
    Stay strong, stay Blessed. Everything IS fine.

    • chestnut
      January 05, 09:48 Reply

      **…CAN’T predict their reaction…**

    • shuga chocolata
      January 05, 19:18 Reply

      Chestie permit me to call you this, you just got my mind and you know how to bring about your ‘A’ game and use it well. I love you for this and am gonna pester you to mail me, will drop my mail address with PP. Thanks man.

  17. celebdoa
    January 05, 09:44 Reply

    hi dear, try informing them and educating them about hiv and when you see the stigmazationis reduced or gone (this might take time tho) then you tell them

  18. Lord II
    January 05, 10:01 Reply

    Dear Pisces….it is well! And no its not a cliché it’s the truth!

    I am following the Reverend’s advice and going further. Prayer with God’s word works wonders and all HE demand from U is that you believe HIM that’s all.

    Open Romans 10:9-10 the book of John and Ephesians. Then pray and declare you are THE healed. Remember you only have to believe it and speak it continuously only for your faith in HIM to rise. He SAID you will be saved so let’s take him by his words ok

    Please DO NOT stop taking your PILLS and keep your doctors appointment regularly and keep getting tested also for progress signs

    Lastly I don’t think you should tell your folks yet until you are stronger and can take whatever shock they might give you and don’t forget if they are your family am sure they would automatically link it somehow. So don’t tell them yet like D said.

    Keep strong my dear and know that you are stronger than HIV…definitely!

    • KryssS
      January 05, 10:35 Reply

      Lmaoooooo! Like seriously? Who is fooling who?

    • Deola
      January 05, 12:00 Reply

      I be wan talk something before but i no wan find trouble…
      *continues humming out of the woods*

  19. xpressivejboy
    January 05, 10:13 Reply

    Pisces Dear,

    I do not know your age, your current standing in live (as per, independent or dependent); but the much I can deduce, from your story, is that you still live under same roof with your parents.

    I’ll start by saying, don’t tell your parents YET. You shall, but not now. You’ve already told a Family (yes, we all in here) and your status does not change the love we already have for you. We’ll be here to support you and be there for you anytime. Just as Pinky for my contact, please do.

    Firstly, learn to be HAPPY; always do the things that give you joy, gym to fitness (as it reduces the early reactions of the ARV administration); be creative with how you take your pills…don’t always do that in their presence. Avoid all forms of drinks not good for the boost of your immune system, feed BIG (Balanced Diet) and feel Great with yourself; keep your dreams alive and keep pursing them…when you’re there and very comfortable you can now tell THEM.

    Telling them at this early stage might not (will not) give you the Happiness to give you the quick healing and fast reduction of Viral Load you hope for.

    You’ll be fine Dearie, that I’m sure of.

  20. s_sensei
    January 05, 11:11 Reply

    So sad. Using ARVs can cause centripetal obesity. What this means is that fat accumulates on the trunk and there is wasting in the arms and legs. This picture may give an appearance of weight loss. Thats one possibility. If you have general weight loss, it means you are either not eating properly or something else is going on. Please discuss this with your doctor. Deciding whether to tell your parents or not would depend on if you are independent and on the nature of your family. One cannot really address this adequately without more information. If you wanna talk, i am available. I would really really love to speak with you

    • Lord II
      January 05, 11:28 Reply

      Eh sensei…dats a first….”centripetal obesity”….care to break it down pls?

      • gad
        January 05, 17:02 Reply

        I sense a medical war *takes cover*

        • pinkpanthertb
          January 05, 17:04 Reply

          A medical war? Between sensei and lord? Puhleeeze! A war implies that both sides are on equal footing.

          • gad
            January 05, 17:53 Reply

            Pinky, I hereby nominate you as the umpire. You are to ensure that war crimes are not committed by both parties. No child soldier,no use of weapons of mass destruction, no starvation etc

      • Lord II
        January 05, 19:29 Reply

        Oh common guys it’s just a simple question that eh….sorry but up till now hasn’t been answered…I simply wanna know coz truly I haven’t heard of this…Sensei bikonu help a bros out!

      • Lord II
        January 05, 20:42 Reply

        Ok….my bad…..took d liberty to Google it and it’s just another….eh sorry a more aristocratic name for ‘kwashiokor’…..sorry sensei u actually described it but ave never known or even seen a HIV patient with these symptoms….anyway what do I know.

      • s_sensei
        January 05, 22:13 Reply

        Lord, sorry i didnt reply earlier. Glad you googled

  21. Nuel
    January 05, 17:00 Reply

    I feel u bro, u knw ur family better than any of us here. I will u myself as an example: growing up wasn’t all dat fun cos i was more alone cos i have a single mum, so i grew up moving frm one to d other cos my mum was never around nd during dat process i was molested as a child, i never could tell my mum, so i grew to keep tins too myself nd battle my problems. Now my mum keeps talking abt she not knowing me (in my mind i will be like u have lost me) nd when i found out dat i am positive, i kept d damn tin to myself, i use my drugs i do things i find joy at nd d only pple dat knw abt it are my doctor, God nd now KD. Am saying no shit to my mum cos i would pin her for all dat happened to me so in other not to do so i keep to myself. In all dear find peace with urself nd if u feel u want to tell ur family afterward its ok. Would love to write a true story abt myself for KD buh i ain’t a good writer.

    • gad
      January 05, 17:38 Reply

      Dear Nuel, I’m so sorry for what you passed through as a child. I’m not holding brief for your Mum but being a single Mum in any society especially Africa goes with a lot of challenges. You will be shocked if your Mum tells you have of the struggles she had as a single parent. I’m not saying that you should tell her your status but forgive her,love her, be affectionate and kind to her.

      • Nuel
        January 05, 19:00 Reply

        I love her, respect her nd i have nothing to hold on her buh she was never just dere for me, yes she gives me want i ask of her buh at d same time she didn’t have my time like she does to my younger ones(step broda nd sis).

        • gad
          January 05, 19:31 Reply

          Why do you think she gives more attention to your siblings? I don’t know if it’s ok to discuss this here but if it’s okay by you, let’s go ahead

      • s_sensei
        January 05, 22:17 Reply

        gad, drop it. its topic is too sensitive

        • gad
          January 06, 03:24 Reply

          If I say I understand what you mean I will be lying

  22. Constant
    January 05, 17:11 Reply

    Only you know your family…as for me, been positive for over a year and I didn’t bother to tell my family cos I’ve suffered every suffering that can be attributed to a polygamous home so telling them will just make things worse…..Just continue doing things that make you happy, eat well, exercise regularly, fall in love (trust me it helps) and finally..love yourself….Hugs and Kisses

  23. Lothario
    January 06, 21:12 Reply

    Don’t ever think you’re not strong enough. You are much stronger than you think, and after the initial shock, your family will work through the pain as long as they love you.

    It’s not the easiest thing in the World but once that first step is taken, and the love is there, you’ll be fine.

  24. Alex
    January 07, 22:39 Reply

    The mail address is returning a server error pink panther

    • pinkpanthertb
      January 08, 03:26 Reply

      Try again. It works. We’ve been getting mails. Volunteers mostly.

  25. Pisces
    January 08, 00:24 Reply

    Thank you everyone…..i am most grateful for your support and advice..
    I guess in the end it all boils down to my own personal decision…
    I will sure try to put some of the advice in perspective….
    Thank you KD *crying*

    • pinkpanthertb
      January 08, 03:28 Reply

      You can let us know if you’re interested in being part of the KD support system, Pisces

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