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"...when I became diagnosed..."


(Report of a HIV-positive; anonymos; 3.Mai 1999)

Early in the year 1996 I realized some - like I know today - opportunistic infections. When I came down with a severe pneumonia in September 1996, the infection was diagnosed. The confrontation with the diagnosis was depressing and releasing at once. Since I belonged to the gay community, I was constantly observing my body with regard to any skin changes, unexplained fevers, nightsweats and ongoing diarrhea. At that point I had so little knowledge. Many thoughts were crossing my mind: How long would I still be alive? How should I manage my re-maining life? How would my family treat me now?

I was desperate. Following a three-week admission to the hospital, I was discharged with little information. I contacted the local AIDS-activists, I looked for a treatment center specialized in HIV. I started triple therapy and finally the concomitant treatment with Interleukin-2. The viral load decreased, the CD4-counts went up, hope came back.

Meanwhile, two and a half years have gone by, the number of pills is constantly increasing, they became my new companions in life. My mood is unsteady and frequently changing, from one second to the next I become really depressive, sometimes I'm losing goals and orientation in life - senselessness. Another problem are the drugs. Besides the fact that my life is now being organized by the clock, which is constantly confronting me with the disease, it creates psychological problems to take such a tremendous amount of pills - knowing that there is no cure.

All this troubles me and makes it difficult to interact with my surrounding. Sometimes my fate is hard to bear.

"toothaches, dentists and HIV"

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