"What If?"

Posted by Pozziepinoy on 8:19 AM

Hi Pozzie!

I hope all is well with you.

I would like to share my story to encourage people to take the test.

I am only 19, a straight girl, and a student. My only sexual encounter was 2 years ago with my boyfriend at that time. We didn't have intercourse, however, only oral sex.
Months passed and I haven't worried about anything until last April 2013. I've read a teen fiction book where the girl caught chlamydia from her boyfriend. From there, I panicked, researching about different STDs and STIs until I came across HIV. It resulted into another panic attack. I haven't had any recurring illnesses during the two-year span but what worried me is that my ex had tuberculosis even before we became a couple and then he told me that he was cured then months later, he has it again and it was already drug resistant during the second time.

My mother had been very vocal of her dislike towards him. I told her that he has TB almost a year into the relationship, after we did ‘it’. My mom had me checked immediately and I was found out to be infected with TB. I underwent medication immediately. But we were still seeing each other for about three months into my medication. And then we broke up January 2012. Fortunately, my infection didn't develop into a full-blown TB case.
I've searched blogs and sites on the web and I was enlightened that I should be responsible of my sexual health if I were to take part in such activities. Kumbaga, “with great power comes great responsibility.”

I searched for clinics where I could take the HIV test and RITM Satellite Clinic in Malate was the best option for me. 

I have a new boyfriend now, as of December 2012. 

Since April 2013, I have been asking myself ‘What if?’

Eventually, I decided that I didn't have it because if I did, I was sure to have developed TB after about a year or more of exposure to it. But I can't seem to get the question off my mind. What if? I didn't want to infect others if ever I have it without my knowledge. A line that is imprinted on my mind from a poster in school is ‘I got tested because I love you’ and I wanted to get tested because I love my family, my boyfriend, and of course myself.
So last August 17, 2013, I finally took the test. The staff at the RITM Satellite Clinic are very friendly and the clinic had a light atmosphere. My counsellor was also very friendly and nice and was even cracking jokes during my pre-counselling. Most of the staff when I went there were gays which is why I easily felt at ease. They have this ‘whatever happens, everything is going to be okay’ vibe.

So, my test came out negative. And finally, I was relieved of all my worries.

My boyfriend accompanied me in taking the test. At first, he didn't want me to take the test. He said he was sure I didn't have it. But we got into an argument and I said to him, “Hindi naman kasi ikaw yung natotorture emotionally. Paranoid na paranoid na ako. Samahan mo na ako please.”

Now I am glad I took the test. I no longer have the question ‘what if’ in my mind. It is great to have a peace of mind. So people out there who are having anxieties and/or worries, take the test! Not knowing is even more frightening than finding out that you are HIV+

NO PLHIV is alone with his or her struggle with HIV!"


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