Q and A


I’m not on treatment, how do I tell my boyfriend?

I have been positive for the past 11 month. My CD4 count is 290. I’m not yet on treatment. I’m scared to tell my boyfriend.


Thanks for getting in touch.

Because your CD4 is 290 its important that you start medication. Not only will the meds help you, they will also reduce the risk of transmission to sexual partners to close to zero. Please see the results of the PARTNER study:


If you’d like some info about starting treatment and its benefits please see the following:


With regards to telling your boyfriend, I can’t really tell you want to do. However, have you tried talking to him about HIV? If you have, what has his reaction been? This could be an indication as to how he would take the news.

One thing to remember is that you do not need to feel ashamed of being positive. It is after all a very manageable health condition.


  1. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Lolo,

    No one can force someone to go for a HIV test, this is a decision that a person needs to make on their own. If he doesn’t want to test, this is up to him. Its also his responsibility to look after his sexual health, and not yours.

    If its any help, once someone is on medication and their viral load becomes undetectable the risk of transmission is close to zero. Please see here:


  2. Lolo

    Hi I have a problem abt a yr ago I tested + I’m on ART’s. I told ma bf. D prblm is he don’t wanna go for tests. Evrytym I bring up d topic he jus ignore me. He always complain abt using protection. As for me I understand what’s at stake. Hw do I persued him to go for tests??

  3. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Jason,

    Thanks for sharing with us your advice for others. It really is appreciated.

    Though sometimes its not easy to tell a partner about your status, its defiantly possible. And for many a relief. It can also bring couples closer.

  4. Jason

    I had to tell my girlfriend I had HIV and it was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. But would you rather protect him or put him at risk. As daunting as it maybe if he loves you, he will understand. Just remember once you tell someone you can not untell them!. Wise words of my health adviser. Also your CD44 count is very low, consider treatment. I put it off for months as I was worried. Now I take one tablet every night and feel fine. Everyone I’ve told has been fantastic and non judgmental. If you really can’t tell him get your clinic to call him and advise he gets tested.

  5. Lisa Thorley

    Hi Simon,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  6. simon

    I wanted to say about your partner, at this moment why don’t you go and get some advice from a counsellor and get support. You can do this at your GUM clinic or go online and find out where your local HIV help group are. Even the Terrence Higgins Trust, they have counseling help groups. You will find that we have all been in your situation. I too had to tell my partner and find out how he would cope, and yes, it’s not easy. However, if the love is strong he will cope and understand. But the last thing you want on your mind is that he has caught your illness, as you will have more difficulty in coping with that then telling him. Take care of yourself and find some help and I’m sure all will be alright in the end

  7. simon

    Keep on getting tested for your HIV and like the other person said you can have a good life on medicine and hopefully one day a cure might come along.


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