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wantbhappy3 01-23-2010 10:24 PM

I need some advice , please help....
 
I"m really needing some reassurance here. Last year I had unprotected sex with a guy I was dating. Don't know his status, as I havent seen him since. But after a few months a started having enlarged lymph nodes and a throat issue where , It didnt hurt, but I couldnt clear the mucus from my throat. This happened in Oct. 2008 and so I decided to get tested for HIV in Febuary 2009 because of my enlarged nodes and throat discomfort and the test came back negative (thats a bit past three months) so I should be in the clear right? Also I tested for other std's in April 2008 and found I had gotten HPV. So doctor gave me anti-biotics for the throat and it did work, and the lymph nodes never went down. So here I am a year later, and the throat issue has come back, and my tongue is white with what seems like some white buildup in the back and red dots, except this time the anti-biotics do not work. I am scared to death that maybe because my immune sytem is so compromised i might not be responding to the meds. I'm am scared that maybe the test I had gotten done will change status, not that I am getting more symptoms. Such as the white tongue, discomfort and dry throat, and I have experienced headaches and feeling nauseaus sometimes too (dont know if its due to anxiety)....no fever, weight lose, night sweats or chills. But symptoms from HIV can come in many forms right???

Im just so afraid, because my nerves are getting the best of me, I am in a great relationship now, and love my boyfriend, so far my boyfriend hasnt had any symptoms but UTI, and a pimple like appearance on his penis. I told him I have the HPV and he has convinced himself that probably that is why the pimple like appearance appeared on his penis.


Also the doctors I went to in Febuary 2009 and April 2009, tried to convince me that I am worrying to much and that I do not have HIV. My doc told me the white tongue is not thrush, and my other doctor basically told me I shouldnt worry when I asked her if I maybe I have HIV, and told me that many things can cause lymph nodes to enlarge. I looked up if HPV can cause lymh nodes to enlarged and doctors and websites confirm no....

In the past year I've had other symptoms that have come and gone, such as pelvic pain, dizziness, and a one time incident where I fainted last year. But they have all come and gone. I was pretty brave about getting the test done the first time, but now as time passes I am more terrrified then ever. I've had nightmares, and stop living life to the fullest and cry all the time because I am so depressed and suffering over this. Its so hard to beleive I could be nagative when symptoms just keep poppin up.

Please help anyone, I would appreciate any insight or rationale please.

wantbhappy3 01-23-2010 10:31 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Btw, Kevin and Joggen I have been reading your blogs and you guys having been keeping me in good spirits with all the helpful advice you have for others. I really hope to hear from you.

blokecalledkev 01-24-2010 07:27 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi wantbhappy3,

I am very sorry to read you are so upset and hurting because of this, please be assured I know exactly what you are going through, as I have been there myself. I went for over 18 months with the fear and uncertainly of not knowing. Finally this came to the point whereby I could no longer function on a daily basis, the entire thing was simply all consuming. I truly do sympathize you with and understand how difficult this must be for you. Having said this it finally got to the point where action had to be taken, one way or the other I had to know. And after all this uncertainty, fear and worry I tested negative. I had literally worried myself sick for 18 months. This is why I encourage you, actually urge you to please put aside your fears and get retested, if you are so concerned.

Please take my advice on this, stop examining yourself, stop looking for ways to confirm your worst fears, stop looking at "HIV symptoms" on Google. Believe me there is only one way to determine your HIV status and that is through a blood test. Symptoms alone are never a reliable indicator.

You posted you have tested negative at three months, from my understanding this is absolute, your status is negative. Your doctor is quite right in assuring you that you have not got HIV, but if you are so concerned, then please put aside your fear and get retested. I know this will be hard advice to accept but please consider it. It really is better to know one way or the other that to live with the constant uncertainly and all the fears that go with it.

Please ,you have lived with all this fear and uncertainly for a great deal of time, the only way to make it all go away is to know for certain. Your previous blood test was negative, I cannot tell you another one will be the same, although there appears to be no reason for it not to be, but I can assure you it is better to know. It is simply the only way to resolve this matter and move on. Please, please do not do as I did and try to endure it.

Please take care, regards Kevin.

soscared1987 01-24-2010 05:07 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
I know exactly how you are feeling, it's good to know I am not alone on this boat. I cry myself to sleep every night because I'm worried sick that I might have HIV. I too seem to have symptoms of HIV. If I test positive I feel like my world is going to end. I have a family and just the thought that I will not see my kids grow up makes me cry al the more. I am getting tested tomorrow and I am sooo scared that I might have a panic attack. Please wish me luck and I wish you luck as well, please get tested before you worry yourself litterally sick like I am doing to myself. That is why I am going tomorrow, because I cannot take this any longer, not knowing whether I really have HIV or not. I feel so great to be able to confide in somebody at all, I don't have anybody to confide in my real life. :(

wantbhappy3 01-28-2010 12:41 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Kevin,

Thank you so much for your reply. I literally just sat in my livingroom and cried reading your response, hoping and praying that you are right, and that your words will make me have the strength and courage to get retested again. As you said 3 months is absolute, but ofcourse the mind plays so many tricks and I go back and forth with "what if, what if, what if??"

For soscared, You have nothing to worry about as Kevin mentioned. Oral sex is not a risk for HIV infection, from what I've learned. I put myself in a very risky situation and had unprotected sex three times with the same person, i was dating. I have beat myself up for that and continue to feel guilt and blame for doing something that I'm sure that everyone has done once in thier life. I know I will never do this again enduring so much emotional, and not too mention physical pain (because of the stress its probably doing to my body). But socared, I know where you are and sympathize with you, dont look at your kids anymore thinking you will not be there for them...cause you will be alright:) :) The anxiety and panic over this is making me think some very irrational and outrageous things too, and I wake up in the morning feeling the doom, gloom and depression (drinking, sleeping alot, and withdrawing from friends...its absolutely terrible, trust me I know)

Kevin, thank you again for your compassion, sincerity and for continuing to be on this board. It helps a tremendous amount reading your threads, knowing that someone went through the exact same thing, with lots of symptoms and you had also mentioned you put yourself in a high risk situation too? Sometime I'm curious, what makes you so determined to help others, but whatever the answer is...I am so grateful you are here. I could imagine what you went through for those eighteen months, and so very happy for your outcome at the end. I hope I will have the same outcome too, and that I can have the same sense of conviction to help others the way you do when I am in a better state of mind again.

God bless you both, soscared and Kevin,

Sincerely

wantbhappy3

blokecalledkev 01-28-2010 06:35 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi wantbhappy3,

Thank you for your kind words and if I have in anyway helped you to overcome your fears and anxieties, I am happy for you, but ultimately it is you that as made the decision and it you that as found the courage to resolve this matter, so well done.

Why do I do this ? Gosh, that is a long story and not a very pretty one I may add so I will offer you the condensed version. I am a married man with three children but my work takes me for long periods overseas. During one trip, some five years ago I ended up one morning in bed with a prostitute, I had never done this before or since. I had been very drunk the night before and to be honest don't recall too much. I was in West Africa at the time. Along with the immediate guilt I felt it slowly dawned on me that through my act of stupidity I may also have exposed myself to HIV. I was really not certain what had taken place but once this realization had set in I could not shake it. I did go for a test three weeks later but never went back for the confirmation test.

Trying to live with this, the uncertainly, the fear and the guilt simply went from bad to worst as time went on. I would spend countless hours on the net, looking at HIV symptoms, examining myself , looking for the smallest sign that would confirm what I had convinced myself was true. I had quite literally convinced myself I was HIV positive. Finally I could take it no longer, I had actually contemplated suicide, I had to know. I had to face it one way or the other and went for a retest. I actually remember saying to the nurse “ I simply want my life back”. I got it back, I tested negative.

I felt as through a weight had been lifted off my shoulders and posted my story on this forum ( and others) simply as a way of closure I guess. In doing so I started to read other peoples stories and I could really relate to what was being said and I could sympathize with the feelings that many people went through and are still going through. So I decided to educate myself about HIV, really look into it and help if I could.

That's really it, I'm just a guy, not a doctor, not really an expert, just a guy who went through a very traumatic experience, a life changing experience. An experience whereby I nearly lost everything, my marriage, my children and it felt like my sanity. So decided I could try to help others who are going through the same. During my journey I have learnt a lot about this, I am not an expert by any means but I have seen the myths and misconceptions that are spread around the net. The fear and the anxiety that goes with such misconceptions. HIV really is not the death sentence that I originally believed it was, people who have HIV have my utmost respect for they way deal with it and they way they help others. The wall of fear that surrounds HIV as no place in today's society and if by my limited experiences I can help others over that wall, then I am happy. Upon reflection it was my own misconceptions, my own lack of understanding, my own prejudices that had actually propagated the fear and torment I went through. Help was there, I just never asked for it, so when somebody asks for help, if possible I will offer words of comfort, words that I myself should have asked for.

Sorry for rambling on, anyway back to you. I really do hope this all works out for you and please let us know how you get on and please if you feel uncertain, put it aside and go for the retest. As you can probably see from my woeful story we all make mistakes, we all make a mess of things and later regret it. But because we make mistakes it does not mean that there has to be dire consequences, it just makes us human. Please rest assured the “what if “ will go away when it is replaced with certainty.

Regards Kevin

meriah 02-03-2010 09:57 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
[QUOTE=wantbhappy3;4169744]I"m really needing some reassurance here. Last year I had unprotected sex with a guy I was dating. Don't know his status, as I havent seen him since. But after a few months a started having enlarged lymph nodes and a throat issue where , It didnt hurt, but I couldnt clear the mucus from my throat. This happened in Oct. 2008 and so I decided to get tested for HIV in Febuary 2009 because of my enlarged nodes and throat discomfort and the test came back negative (thats a bit past three months) so I should be in the clear right? Also I tested for other std's in April 2008 and found I had gotten HPV. So doctor gave me anti-biotics for the throat and it did work, and the lymph nodes never went down. So here I am a year later, and the throat issue has come back, and my tongue is white with what seems like some white buildup in the back and red dots, except this time the anti-biotics do not work. I am scared to death that maybe because my immune sytem is so compromised i might not be responding to the meds. I'm am scared that maybe the test I had gotten done will change status, not that I am getting more symptoms. Such as the white tongue, discomfort and dry throat, and I have experienced headaches and feeling nauseaus sometimes too (dont know if its due to anxiety)....no fever, weight lose, night sweats or chills. But symptoms from HIV can come in many forms right???

Im just so afraid, because my nerves are getting the best of me, I am in a great relationship now, and love my boyfriend, so far my boyfriend hasnt had any symptoms but UTI, and a pimple like appearance on his penis. I told him I have the HPV and he has convinced himself that probably that is why the pimple like appearance appeared on his penis.


Also the doctors I went to in Febuary 2009 and April 2009, tried to convince me that I am worrying to much and that I do not have HIV. My doc told me the white tongue is not thrush, and my other doctor basically told me I shouldnt worry when I asked her if I maybe I have HIV, and told me that many things can cause lymph nodes to enlarge. I looked up if HPV can cause lymh nodes to enlarged and doctors and websites confirm no....

In the past year I've had other symptoms that have come and gone, such as pelvic pain, dizziness, and a one time incident where I fainted last year. But they have all come and gone. I was pretty brave about getting the test done the first time, but now as time passes I am more terrrified then ever. I've had nightmares, and stop living life to the fullest and cry all the time because I am so depressed and suffering over this. Its so hard to beleive I could be nagative when symptoms just keep poppin up.

Please help anyone, I would appreciate any insight or rationale please.[/QUOTE]

meriah 02-03-2010 09:59 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
i am a 24 year old female and i am in the same position you are i really need to talk to someone about this if anyone could help please contact me!

blokecalledkev 02-04-2010 04:09 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
[QUOTE=meriah;4177668]i am a 24 year old female and i am in the same position you are i really need to talk to someone about this if anyone could help please contact me![/QUOTE]

Hi there,

Please understand that members here will gladly offer you advice and reassurance if you list your specific worries and concerns. I would advise you to start a new thread where you can tell us why you are so worried and upset.

Regards Kevin.

wantbhappy3 02-05-2010 11:30 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi Kevin,

Thanks for posting your story once again on this forum. So much of what you say you went through is exactly how I am feeling now, just the guilt of perhaps giving it to someone else, and also the anxiety of not knowing, and ironically of knowing at the same time too. I made an appointment last week and wont beleive this but had a major panic attack where I ended up going home and not taking the restest at all:(

I am so dissapointed and hurt about not taking the restes, for many reasons. I had built up the confidence to go again to get retested (mind you after my 12 week test..my last unprotected sexual encounter was beg. Nov. 2008 and I had my test done in Feb. 2009. ) . After all the courage I had mustered up once I got there, I had drove myself into the biggest panic and went right back to square one. I think I would be have done it with and went thru with it but then there was this video they were showing in the waiting room with ppl that are HIV positve and all thier symptoms and ofcourse I have lots of them...and that sent me in high panic mode.

I am usually the person that is rational and level headed, but boy this whole ordeal has made me far from that and is making me into someone I am not. Like you said you just want your life back, and Kevin right now I am crying out to God that i will have just that.

Sorry for the over emotional display of words here on this forum, I just havent told anyone because I am afraid they will judge me or worse tell someone else what I am going through and I think that would just add to my anxiety.

In any event, I have a had few normal days that I try not to think about what I am going through and then I will see a commercial, or advertising, or even the other day a text about someone with HIV. lol Its just ludicrous when your thinking of something how much it comes up. Then today I hit rock bottom when my boyfreind said he had stomach pains exactly where I have them too for the last few months (below my rib cage) and that is a rare place for someone to have pain thier stomach and that just made me so depressed.

I am not a drinker, complainer or even someone who seeks people to comfort or get advice from but for the first time in my life I ma so humbled and absolutely need some ones elses comfort and second opinion.

Kevin, thanks again for helping us all. You are very much appreciated here. I know you will say Darn it just take the test already...I just need the courage again to get my behind back there again...lol.

God bless and hope your all very blessed with your health,

wantbhappy3

blokecalledkev 02-06-2010 07:16 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi wantbhappy3,

There is no need to apologies for anything here; everybody understands how difficult this must be for you. Having said that, I am sorry you were unable to go through with the retest; it must have been very traumatic for you.

A while ago on this forum there was a discussion as to whether people should tell their partners or people close to them. Opinion was split on this issue, many people felt they should keep this to themselves; on the other hand many people felt that confiding in somebody close to them helped them a lot. Wantbhappy3 from what you are posting it is clear that this is very upsetting for you and it is equally clear that you have not been able to confide in anybody close to you. Please, this is my opinion and only my opinion but maybe you should consider confiding in somebody close to you, asking somebody close to you for help. Friends are friends, they are never judgmental and true friends will stand by you, irrespective of any issues. Maybe it is worth asking for a friend to come along with and to support you when you go for another retest. Naturally this is only a suggestion and of course this is entirely up to you.

Please wantbhappy3, you have had a negative test at three months which in its self is conclusive, there is nothing to suggest that this result will change. Unless anything as changed your retest will confirm this result. This really is the final huddle, which will allow you put all this behind you and move on. If you prefer to jump this final huddle by yourself, no problem, but sometimes we all need that little bit of extra help. Maybe for you a friend or family member will provide you with that little extra help.

Please take care, try to relax.

Regards Kevin.

wantbhappy3 02-08-2010 01:20 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi Kevin,

Thanks again for continuing to reply to my post. You are absolutely right I have to tell someone, and so today I sent an email out to a friend and told her when she has the time that i need a friend to talk to and its about a delicate topic. She responded said she would meet with me this week. I am very nervous about telling anyone, what I've been going through and just the hell I am dealing with right now all alone.

I imagine why there is such a split decision on telling people around you, its so very difficult to do. I never shared anything with my partner about a concern I have with getting tested, because I know he will react adversely to it. He has said made comments about hypothetically being ever suspecting something like that and reacted badly which made me more scared of asking for his support. I have a panic/despression disorder and I'm trying really hard to control it under these circumstances, which is why I've been very reluctant about telling someone else, because what they say or how they respond might send me into a panic mode.

It would be perhaps a it easier to deal with my mental state of mind if I didnt have this anxiety disorder but it makes things that much more difficult.

Kevin, thanks for allowing me the opportunity to express my concerns and feelings, and I hope I have not taken advantage of your time and generous advice and help. I am going to let you know how that conversation goes with my friend and ask her if she can support me through this difficult time and go with me to be retested.

May all be well with you and your family,

wantbhappy3

blokecalledkev 02-08-2010 12:22 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi wantbhappy3,

There is no need to thank me honestly. I hope all goes well with your friend and you can confide in them the way you have on this forum. Please let us know how it goes.

wantbhappy3, I genuinely do feel for you and and all the hurt this is causing. It is clear to anybody who reads your posts that you are very anxious about this but maybe we could stand back and look at this situation. You have been tested at three months; this is a conclusive blood test. Even though I have advised to get retested, there is no doubt in my mind that a retest will be no different. I really do appreciate how anxious you are and how this anxiety can simply eat away at you and this is why I am advising you to get retested. Not because I feel you have put yourself at risk but to get the reassurance that you need to put this all behind you and move on.

You have done what quite a lot of people, myself included, were terrified to do, you got checked out at three months. You really have faced the worst of it and came through it with great news, you are negative. It is extremely unlikely that this will change with another test. I understand that words on an internet forum are no substitute for hard facts but please the fact is at three months you were tested negative. From what you have posted, I genuinely do not see another blood test result being any different from the one at three months. The only difference here is that, for yourself it will be enough to allow you to put this behind you and you will no longer have to live with the fear and anxiety you have endured for so long.

Take care, all the best.

Regards Kevin.

wantbhappy3 02-15-2010 03:48 AM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
Hi Kevin,

I cannot thank you enough. I have not gone yet to get retested BUT I did however ask a very close friend to come with to do so. She said she will take a day off next week and go with me. I have been very encouraged by your postings and go back and read them from time to time just so that I dont fall into a deep depression. Sounds pathetic but its the only thing I hold onto all day is yoru words and also my three month test.

On top of all my anguish, me and my boyfriend brokeup over the weekend and its so hard to deal with both this feeling of doom and gloom and now a break up. I read your postings on some elses thread about the reason we are so anxious about this virus. Your conclusion was that people feel guilty and the need to punish themselves. I couldnt agree with you more. Because I feel that way sometimes in my own irrational way, that God is trying to punish me for the carefree and free spirited person I was with my sexuality. Although I used protection with many of my past lovers, the partner I got tested for after three months I did not. Which is what sets in the guilt...that I shouldve and I didnt.


In any event thanks for posting that thread about guilt and punishing ourselves..that was a great theory. btw what were some of the symptoms you had that drove you to beleive you had HIV? Sorry if this is too personal to ask as I have not seen any threads from you that touches on that subject from you. I will do my best to go through with my retesting this time, until then I just have to wait for my friend to have an available day to go with me. BTw she was very supportive and told me she once had the same anxiety and got tested for HIV because she had a yeast infection. It turned out negative for her, but wish that was the ONLY symptom i have.

I've had so many that Its sooooooo hard to beleive it could be anything else. Not that I dont want to beleive its anything else. Also my doc sent me out to get my thyroids checked. gotta go this week.

sorry for rambling on here..lol....Thank you from the most sincerest place for your understanding and not brushing me off as most people would. Hope all is well and that you've had an amazing weekend,

With continued appreciation,

wantbhappy3

elizabeth314 02-15-2010 11:45 PM

Re: I need some advice , please help....
 
i know what you mean about them making u watch a video! they did that to me one time after my rapid test swab, i had to go sit in a little room by myself while the results came back and they put on a video about stds and hiv. i told them, no no i don't want to watch this video (it's like, jeez, i am here already, obviously anxiety ridden about to have a mental breakdown, and now you make me watch this video while my quickswab develops? really?)


kev is right...*hugs* sometimes when i'm feeling really scared, this is what i tell myself, or sometimes i even write it down:

no matter what happens, i'm going to be ok

and you know what? it's always true. so take a few deep breaths, and get your retest for peace of mind, and then put this behind you.


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