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All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy. Living with HIV. Choosing who to tell is a personal decision, and you may often find yourself trying to balance honesty with protecting your right to privacy. As with many issues surrounding HIV, no answers are right for everyone, but here are some general disclosure tips:. Disclosing to ificant Others Studies have shown that most people living with HIV disclose their HIV diagnosis to their ificant other—their spouse or partner—within a few days of learning their status.

At first, your partner may feel anxiety about his or her own HIV status and may also feel angry and upset if the HIV infection occurred sexually outside the relationship. Depending on the nature of your relationship, you might want to consider some professional couples counseling. Six months after you start antiretroviral treatment, if your viral load remains consistently undetectable, you will not transmit HIV. Partner notification refers to information conveyed to spouses, sexual partners, needle-sharing partners and others who might be at risk for HIV.

Others prefer to wait and see whether the relationship develops before disclosing. Despite the fact that most people know about safer sex and how the virus is transmitted, fear and stigma can stir up very strong emotions and your status may deter some people from proceeding further in a relationship with you. While in most cases, sharing your HIV status is a personal choice, in some states, specific laws actually make it a crime not to disclose your status to a sexual partner.

General dating and sexual partner disclosure issues to consider:. Disclosing to Family and Friends Your family and friends are likely to be concerned about your future, and disclosing your status to them may lead to even stronger relationships. You may find yourself having to educate them about HIV, but your family and friends can be a good source of support depending on the nature of your relationship with them. While most people will respect that what you have shared was told in confidence, you need to be aware that your HIV status may end up becoming the subject of gossip among other family members, friends and Poz guy looking 4 female friend.

If you have a tight-knit family or social group or you live in a small community or a rural area, confidentiality may be harder to maintain. General tips to consider when disclosing to family and friends:. However, they may legally inquire whether you are aware of any physical limitation that might interfere with your ability to perform the essential functions of the job.

If your HIV is interfering with your work to the extent that it might place your employment in jeopardy, you might consider disclosing to your supervisor. Your employer is required to reasonably accommodate your needs if you are otherwise qualified to perform the essential duties of your job. Hopefully, you will not need to turn to legal recourse to protect your rights. However, if that becomes necessary, there are laws to protect you. Disclosing to Coworkers Think carefully before disclosing your status to your coworkers—even those you consider to be good friends.

Also, some states have laws requiring disclosure prior to receiving medical care. Health care providers cannot deny their services to someone simply because the person is HIV positive. If a doctor or other health care provider is uncomfortable treating someone with HIV and makes that known to you in any way, be aware that you have legal recourse in such situations. You have been inactive for 60 minutes and will be logged out in. Any updates not saved will be lost.

Home Basics. Living with HIV Disclosure. Copy Link. Share Print. As with many issues surrounding HIV, no answers are right for everyone, but here are some general disclosure tips: Be selective. In most instances, choosing who to tell is your personal decision. Who do you need to tell? What do you want to tell them about your HIV infection, and what are you expecting from the people you are disclosing your HIV status to?

When should you tell them? Where is the best place to have this conversation? Why are you telling them? Easy does it. In most situations, you can take your time to consider who to tell and how to tell them. Consider whether there is a real purpose for disclosing or whether you are simply feeling anxious and want to share your feelings. No need to apologize.

You have a virus. Keep it simple. Poz guy looking 4 female friend stick to the facts. Avoid isolating yourself. If you are unable to tell close friends, family members or other loved ones about your HIV status, allow yourself to draw upon the support and experience of others in the HIV community. Consider ing a support group or an online discussion, such as the POZ Forums.

Go with your gut. Trust your instinct, not your fears. Millions of others have dealt with this experience and have found their way through it. You will get through it too. General dating and sexual partner disclosure issues to consider: Keep what you say as simple and direct as possible. You are already behaving responsibly with that person. Not everyone is going to react the same way. Whatever their reaction may be at first, whether negative or positive, be aware that reactions can change in time. General tips to consider when disclosing to family and friends: Keep what you say as simple and as direct as possible.

Tell them you have something important to tell them. Offer to answer any questions they may have.

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Ask them to be there for you. Tell them how much they mean to you and how much you love them. General tips to consider with regard to employers: Unless your HIV status affects your current ability to perform your job, you are under no legal obligation to disclose your status to your employer. Consider very carefully what your purpose is for disclosing your status to your employer. If you do disclose, tell the person you want to speak with that you have something important to discuss. Be mindful that a request for confidentially is not an absolute guarantee that it will be respected.

Some employers will rise to the occasion and be supportive. Others may be disappointing in their responses, and you will understandably feel hurt and angry. Keep what you say as simple and direct as possible. Let him or her know that you are receiving appropriate health care.

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If you may need a particular accommodation, such as occasional time off for a medical appointment, mention it. General tips to consider with regard to the workplace: Tell the person you have something important to tell him or her. Tell the person why you want him or her to know.

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Let him or her know that you are sorting out issues related to your HIV status and his or her support is important to you. General tips to consider with regard to medical and health care providers: All health care providers are bound by confidentiality laws.

By telling a doctor, a nurse or other health care providers, you do give up a degree of privacy, but that does not release them from adhering to laws regarding confidentiality. Your status should be treated as privileged information. Stay Logged In? Continue Log out.

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