Matt never been a good match for me, really; my diagnosis just shined a spotlight on that.The only bad thing about breaking up with Matt was the realization that I would have to start dating again.After my diagnosis, Matt and I stopped making dinner together, speaking to each other, and sleeping in the same bed.(He was negative, and had been getting tested his entire life.) We broke up within the year.There was a positive aspect to my HIV, though I didn't know that then.
Like having Sunday football parties or fighting in Home Depot about what color to paint an accent wall in our living room.
I kept asking the nurse who took me upstairs at the Margaret Sanger Center in the East Village for a second blood test to confirm the rapid test result.
I was in shock that simply sleeping with probably close to a hundred men throughout my 20s — in college, in Rome, Italy where I lived for five years, in New York City upon my return — and not being strict about using condoms could have such a serious consequence.
I grew up during the HIV/AIDS crisis and should have known better, but as a heterosexual woman, I equated safe sex with not getting pregnant more than with getting an STI, let alone HIV. It's embarrassing to admit that now, but I really did ignorantly think sex was all fun and games.
For me, "dating," was basically a euphemism for casual sex.
But dating sites such as HIVNet, a community for people living with HIV that launched in 2001, are trying to reduce the stigma.