Love and Relationships

christina carta no textby Christina Carta
February 10, 2016

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, for the one who is single, things can be very different for someone living with HIV when it comes to relationships and finding love if you are not already in a relationship. It can also be depressing because of the stigma that comes along with HIV. Many women fear rejection, which is also normal, because our communities are just not educated as much as they should be, or what info they do have is really outdated.

But as far as someone like myself, I decided to use social networks to meet someone. My goal was to find someone to accept me as a person. To have nice conversations online to get to know someone before meeting. And using video chat, such as Skype, I wanted to see the real person. I also watched movies via Skype and had many conversations to get to know these people. Friends should be considered first anyway of course. But I have had some replies from members of dating sites just wanting hookups only. And you will get those who even question why are you on these sites if you’re not just looking for a hookup. Then off I go with my lectures on protection and prevention and knowing your HIV status. A lot of people question me why I put what I do in my bios. For the ones who have accepted it, most do accept the work, because oh it’s a job, someone has to do it. That I have so much compassion for those people…And there I go again with my lectures, and questions.

“Would you ever Date someone positive?”

Or, “How do you know if you have ever dated someone Positive? Do you ask or Talk about it? Most people don’t.”

And I say, “How do you know if I am one of THOSE people myself?”

I have not even gone for coffee with these guys. The attitudes I have gotten is nothing but ignorance of not knowing or not having been educated properly about it. Seriously, how could I? Why would I? I have some many blocks on my block list because so many on these sites are only looking for a hookup, and so many discriminating remarks because I talk about HIV in my bio. There are some good ones out there, don’t get me wrong, but you can weed the bad ones from the good ones without disclosing your status if you don’t want to be upfront at first because of being rejected. You don’t have to tell anyone unless you start to have a physical and sexual relationship. I say physical because some people still think you can get it from just kissing.  It may take time and normally it will take time.

We all want a loving relationship just like everyone else. We are not any different. But so many treat us so wrong and so bad. Many women are afraid to leave those they are with and put up with the abuse for the fear of being alone and the rejection from the community. I also was one of those women. After many years, I have come to know my own self and also I wanted that companionship and that love that we all deserve.

My personal story: Today I am happy with all areas in my life such as health and fitness (I have cleaned up my diet over the years and have been exercising regularly), friendships (I have been surrounded by positive, like-minded people and personal growth); at age 38, I felt I was living my most purposeful life ever and it was time to take things to the next level, putting my past behind and by working on the one area I had not actualized yet–true love. I felt I owed it to myself to give love a serious go because truth be told, I had been putting true love on hold most of my life because of my past relationship. I had lost all trust. I would pretend that I wasn’t interested in love or say I was busy working on other things when deep down, I really wanted to meet my special someone. But I was so afraid of rejection.

I felt it was high time to put myself out there, on social sites instead of actually going out. Since I have never gone out to meet someone or been to parties, I felt this would be better; also, if I started to like someone and they felt the same, I would tell them my health issues before actually meeting to see how the person would act, and I wouldn’t have to deal with rejection face to face. I could seriously explore going into a relationship with someone. And what better to do it then rather than later, given that I was 38 and what I felt to be a prime age to start to date and seek out a serious relationship partner? It was time for me to take the leap of faith and boldly step forward.

Now almost 40, and my kids almost grown, I haven’t had much luck. I have met friends online, but that’s as far as it has went. The rejection sticks in my head but  that’s the chance we all take. I want that one, that can be my all in one…Number one to accept me for the person I am. To be a friend and want to move forward and grow in life. To love me back because I have so much love to give. To stand by me when I start to fall, to pick me back up, and let me know they have my back. Everyone in our lives are in our lives for a reason–either a purpose or a lesson. Finally now I have met a wonderful person. Time will tell–one day at a time. The best comes to those who wait.