HIV Status Disclosure and Ripping the Band-Aid Off Quick

David Duran
Original Article:

Recently, I found myself in a difficult, but not unfamiliar, situation. It’s one that I usually try to avoid. In my infinite quest to find ways to procrastinate from living my life, I found myself online and on a hookup site. I normally just go on there to browse and check out who is around; it rarely leads to an actual meeting. This time, I ended up speaking with a guy who seemed nice enough. After a few hours of chatting back and forth, we opted to meet up for a drink. The problem was, we decided to meet for that drink at my house.

In the back of my head I kind of already knew where this encounter was leading, but since we had had such a great exchange, I convinced myself that we might actually be meeting to get to know each other better, and that sex was not on the agenda for the evening.

When he came by, we had a drink, made some mindless small talk, and then I found myself laying on the bed with the guy I had planned to just get to know. During the initial foreplay, I kept telling myself that I still might have a chance of not needing to say anything about my HIV status, since I felt we weren’t going to end up in a situation where anyone would be put at risk. Plus, he hadn’t said or asked anything yet either, so maybe it was a nonissue or maybe he also didn’t expect things to go much further, at least that night.

Well, things did progress and we mutually decided that intercourse was what we both wanted. At this point, there was no turning back, and it was at that moment that he asked, "You’re negative, right?" Right then and there I was slapped right back into reality and I knew I had messed up. Why didn’t I tell him before we met up? It would have made this scene a whole lot easier, or just eliminated it from ever happening.

Being HIV positive for the past six years, I’ve had to deal with disclosure and the gut-wrenching process of deciding the appropriate time to disclose for each situation I put myself in.

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