When the Person You Love Is HIV Positive

The increasing availability of the latest therapies and medication for people living with HIV/AIDS means that many of them can look forward to healthier and much longer futures. The prospect of dating, marriage, and making important plans and decisions with a partner is now a reality for HIV-positive individuals who can keep their viral loads down.

Having a relationship with an HIV-positive person

Having a relationship with a person living with HIV/AIDS is a personal preference. If your love to that person is genuine and if you can accept his/her condition, then yes, it is OK to have a relationship with him/her. However, you should understand the facts about HIV/AIDS so that you’ll know what to expect in the relationship and you’ll know how to protect yourself.

Living with uncertainty

In a relationship involving an HIV-positive person and an HIV-negative one, the best prescription is total honesty. HIV/AIDS can significantly affect nearly all aspects of both partners’ life: from sex life to managing expensive medical bills to important life decisions like starting a family. So you need to be honest when confronted by problems.

As with many other partners who are dealing with chronic illness, having a relationship with an HIV-positive person means living with much uncertainty. This can destroy event the strongest of relationships.

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What to do to help your loved one feel comfortable and supported

People with HIV/AIDS deserve to be loved. You can do some simple things to help your partner feel comfortable and supported. Respect his/her independence and privacy and give your partner as much control as possible. Treat your partner as you treat others.

Hangout with him/her, laughs with him/her, and enjoy your partner’s company. In times when the person you love may have his/her episode of uncertainty and fear, be supportive by being a person he/she can talk with about these things.

What to avoid when living with an HIV-positive person

Don’t engage in unprotected sex. Unsafe sex increases your risks of getting HIV. Even if both you are HIV-positive, you still need to practice safe sex to avoid reinjection. Unprotected sex also increases your risk of other infections like STIs and opportunistic infections.

Also avoid sharing sex toys, razors, toothbrushes, drug needles, or the equipment needed in preparing for an injection. You should take extra care to avoid making contacts with your partner’s semen, blood, breast milk, or vaginal fluid.

You can share household items such as phones, sports equipment, clothes, dishes, food, bathrooms or swimming pools with your HIV-positive partner without risks of infection.

 
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