Q and A

Question

Should I tell my boyfriend I am HIV positive?

I have been with my boyfriend for a short while and we had unprotected sex. He is pushing for us to get tested (he confirmed that he is HIV negative), and I don’t know how to break this to him. I faced major rejection from my ex-husband whom I’d been honest with from the day I met him. I have been on ART and undetectable for 15 years. I am afraid of telling my boyfriend now since I didn’t disclose my status before, for fear of dealing with the stigma again. Should I just walk away from him although I love him. The truth would break his heart.

Answer

Hi, how are you doing?

I am sorry to hear that your ex-husband left you for this reason. An HIV status positive is not a reason for a relationship to breakdown. Although I do understand that HIV carries stigma and unfortunately people do hold their own views, albeit not favourable.

As you have mentioned, you have a fear of disclosing your status. For what you have said this is more than reason to feel this way. Do you know your boyfriends views towards HIV? Are you able to bring the topic into conversation without explicitly mentioning your own status?

Are you and he aware of U=U? It means if you are undetectable, you cannot transmit HIV. While undetectable you will not even need to use a condom. As you have been undetectable for so long, it means your medication is working well and your boyfriend is not at any risk.

Disclosing is personal. Your status is a something you have to feel comfortable and safe to talk about. Please do not feel pressured into this. You as a person have your own right to privacy. Do you have any close friends/family that you are able to discuss this with? You may be more comfortable with someone with you.

If you have any more questions do get in touch,

Josh.

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