Saturday, 3 September 2016

"My husband gave me HIV/AIDS but it would not kill me"

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A Beta Girl who has survived the trauma of being infected by her husband with HIV/AIDS shares her story below. Read and learn.

"I got married to my husband when I was 21 years old, in 1962. We were happy together and all, but I noticed one problem, he was promiscuous. He kept keeping late nights and spending time with other women after work. I confronted him on several occasions about it, but he never changed. We had 4 children together. After our second child, I had problems conceiving because of the STDs he had infected me with, which had been treated but afflicted me with minor infertility. I battled with fertility issues, underwent several fertility programs and God finally blessed me with my last two kids. 

One will think after all this fertility problems I had gotten because he had infected me with curable STDs, he would change and become faithful to me, or even protect himself when he met other women, but no. In the early 2000s I discovered that he had another child with another woman. I contemplated leaving him, but I thought about my children, the love I had for him, and decided to stay in the marriage. I kept believing that he would change. 

Sometime in 2007, there was a free HIV/AIDs screening in my church premises. I decided to go and get tested. Lo and behold, the results came out positive. I was shocked, surprised, perplexed. Being that I was a faithful wife the obvious came to my mind. I confronted my husband, and asked him if he had HIV, I showed him the results and he admitted, that he knew about it, and that we should start getting treatment together. Prior to my discovery that he was HIV/AIDS positive, we were battling his health, as he kept falling sick, but each time he went to the doctor, he came back with results that were not complete. Sometimes I would see some pages in his hospital book, shredded. When I tried to ask, he will brush it off, and the matter will end. His viral load(amount of HIV in blood) was very much higher than mine, so he kept falling sick more often. He was psychologically and emotionally defeated by the sickness and it took over him. 

All through the sickness, I stayed with him. In 2010, he passed away. I did not share the story with anybody, except my doctors. Even my children did not know that their father died of HIV and that he infected me as well. As a mother, I protect them from the disease, I make sure I don’t leave any sharp objects at home, I take all necessary precautions and I take my medications regularly. Sometime this year, I shared the news with my children. I hesitated to tell them for so long, because I didn’t want to traumatize them, but I couldn’t keep the truth away from them anymore. I felt like that confession was delaying my complete healing of the disease, because I believe that I will go to the hospital one of these days and the test results will come out negative. 

I look healthy, I take my medications, I eat well, and I don’t have any health issues. I visit the doctor often for health checks. In my mind, HIV is a disease like the rest of them; Diabetes, High blood pressure, arthritis, etc. That mindset and my believe in God is what has given me peace of mind and internal joy that is keeping me happy. I have forgiven my husband for infecting me with the disease, I forgave him even before he died, I hold no offence and I am happy. The advises I would like for Beta women and girls out there to take away are the following:

  • ·         Pray for protection of your spouses
  • ·         Don’t make negative declarations in your life. Always be conscious of the things you say, and let them always be positive.
  • ·         Promiscuity is dangerous. Do not persistently tolerate it in the life of your partner. If you cannot do anything about it physically, then engage in a serious spiritual battle to fight it. Don’t consider cheating as a normal thing that all men do. That is how I considered it, and that mentality made me to accept and tolerate it. Do not accept cheating or promiscuity in your marriage. 
  •       Make sure you get HIV tested regularly, especially if you are sexually active. Even if you are married. Before getting married, make sure you and your partner get tested as well.
  •             Never hold grudges, always forgive, the forgiveness is for your own joy and happiness.

HIV/AIDs is real. It is a disease like every other, don't give up on life if you discover that you are infected. As long as you have life, you have hope to live and achieve all you ever dreamed of. I am 48 years old, and I am still alive, looking healthy and happy. I would die someday, like every other person would, but not of HIV/AIDS. Hope my story blesses somebody!"
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