Justin's HIV Journal

Thursday, June 7, 2018

HIV Long-Term Survivor's Day - What Is an HIV Long-Term Survivor? Five People With HIV Grapple With the Question

What Is an HIV Long-Term Survivor?  Five People With HIV Grapple With the Question

HIV Long-Term Survivor's Day is here! (6/5/2018) I have often wondered whether I am considered a long-term survivor. I've been positive for only 13 years. I personally don't know whether I am considered a long-term survivor, but it has somewhat felt that way. I've buried friends that have denied their own HIV status; because of the stigma they felt from family and the outside world, they let illness consume them instead of facing it head-on. But I was born in 1979 and will never remember the early epidemic and how there were people dying every day of AIDS. I decided to interview five people who have been HIV positive between 10 and 30-plus years to better understand what being a long-term survivor means and to learn about some of the challenges they face or may face.

The people who spoke to me come from different backgrounds, one is an African-American gay man, and two are Caucasian gay men. One is a woman who found out she was positive when she was pregnant, and the other is a heterosexual hemophiliac. I wanted volunteers from a diverse circle to get different perspectives on what they thought a long-term survivor is.

To see the interviews, click here or the link below

http://www.thebody.com/content/81068/what-is-an-hiv-long-term-survivor-five-people-with.html?ic=tbhwnbox

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