Tell us about your experiences with weight management. Take our survey!

This Story Won't Win Me Any Popularity Contests, But It's Important That I Share It

The time has come for me to bear my burden with purpose and to use my experience to educate those who stand where I stood. This is a start.

I've never felt more ashamed of myself.

HIV stigma and education

Last June, I met someone over an online dating app. This wasn't my usual song and dance, as I was never so into the dating scene in the first place. Until then, I always met partners in an organic face-to-face setting. This instance was unique but I was interested in meeting this person in real life as I felt we clicked, and I was drawn to them. Before we were to meet, they sent the message: "I want to get this out of the way and tell you now, I'm HIV positive. It's undetectable though." I remember thinking that this must be some kind of scam or a blatant lie.

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

What does undetectable mean?

What does "undetectable" even mean? I asked myself. The only thing is, I didn't take the time to do the research or to even ask this person to educate me. After all of our conversations and time learning about one another, I blocked them instantly. I felt lied to. In retrospect, I can only imagine how this made them feel since they were opening up to me. I had no clue undetectable means untransmissible.

Maybe it's a good time to mention that I'm a firm believer in karma as an underlying principle of divine purpose.

Fast forward a couple of months from the dating app scenario, my birthday passed just a few days prior.

Summer was almost at an end. I had never felt more independent or prepared to explore life's possibilities. I went into my local clinic for my regular STI/STD testing, where I discovered that I myself am now HIV positive.

Interested in sharing your own diagnosis story, treatment experience, or another aspect of living with HIV?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Join the conversation

Please read our rules before commenting.