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Telling Your Partner

One of the most difficult tasks we face is notifying present

and/or past partners that we have tested HIV+.

So many emotions come into play when this must be done.

~How exactly do I say it

~How will they react

~Will they hate me

~Will they leave me

~Will I end up facing this alone

~Will they still love me

~Will they shun me

~Is this real? Do I really have to do this!

The list could go on and on and on. But it is something

that really needs to be done. I had just recently started seeing

someone when I was faced with this and I had to decide how

to tell him. We hadn't been intimate so he was in no danger but

I still was afraid. I liked him a lot and knew that it would be the

deciding factor as to what direction the relationship would take. He

didn't leave and we are now married but I was terrified at the time.

I felt a moral and social obligation to have the notifications made.

And only I could make the decision as to how it

would be done. There are some options because if any of

our partners are infected, THEY need to know so they can

get treatment and not continue to pass the virus on to others.

I was told I could be the one to notify or have a health department

counselor to make the notifications--with or without using my name.

The health department has trained counselors available to help you decide.

And any partners they notify will be counseled and offered an HIV test.

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