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Written by – The Offbeat Asian
Episode 12 – Finding Out That My Boyfriend Has HIV
My relationship with the Russian guy was like a rollercoaster ride, with plenty of ups and downs. Many mishaps happened, like the time a young kid asked him for nude photos.
I think everything started to fall apart after what he told me in August. It was our fifth month together and we were going to celebrate it with a romantic dinner. He picked me up after work and drove me back to his place. I remember him looking sad while we were eating. After that, he took me to his room and locked the door as a precaution, since we had other housemates (who were also gay).
I asked him: “What’s wrong, love?”
He said: “Nothing, just the stupid doctor from Russia…”
He seemed on the verge of tears. I insisted: “You can tell me anything darling…”
He hesitated, then said: “Before I came to Vietnam, I had to do a medical checkup with a doctor. This afternoon, he just sent me a message…” He started to curse in Russian. I understood some, as I studied a bit of Russian in university.
“Can you show me the message?” I asked
“No, I already deleted it…” he said
“Well, what was it about, honey. You can trust me!” I gave him a kiss.
“…My condition…health…condition…” he started to cry softly. I held his hands, then my mind pieced everything together.
I looked at him in the eyes while trying to be calm:
“Do you have HIV?”
I didn’t know how to react to the information. I never had to deal with a situation like this before. I just gave him a big hug. We both started crying and soon, we were a sobbing mess. I had so many questions in my head, but couldn’t formulate any of them.
After 10 minutes, I finally told him: “Ok, tomorrow we will go to the clinic to check, both of us. The doctor could be wrong. I mean you came to him in December right? It has been 8 months ever since. Why did he take so long to contact you?”
He said: “I don’t know. I really don’t…”
We only had unprotected sex three or four times, but still, I was nervous.
“What if I have it too?”
“Then we will stay together and take care of each other.” He squeezed me in his lap.
In retrospect, I felt like a child that night, only crying and thinking about myself. I wasn’t there for my boyfriend. I didn’t ask about his feeling. I was selfish and immature.
We went to the clinic the next day. After some counseling, they took blood samples and told us to come back in the afternoon. We waited anxiously. When we got back to the clinic, the results were ready for us. I was negative. A true relief. Unfortunately, my boyfriend was HIV+. I asked the female doctor (who was really nice to us) if he could receive treatments here. She explained that it would be difficult for a foreigner since he didn’t have medical insurance. She told me not to worry as she would convince her boss to make an exception. I was extremely thrilled. At home, I did some research about HIV treatment (ARV), PEP and PrEP.
HIV has always caused tremendous hardship, pain and devastation within the LGBTQ+ community. Despite the vast developments in HIV treatment over the last few decades, gay people are still at higher risk of getting infected than any other category due to chemsex and multiple sex partners. It is time to start taking care of our health and get an education about the disease
Episode 13 –
The Downfall Of My Relationship With An HIV+ Guy
It’s the conclusion to the story, my final chapter with the Russian guy. Wanna see how I found out about my boyfriend’s HIV condition…
The big day finally arrived. I took my boyfriend to his first HIV treatment session. We walked in around 10:30am and were forced to wait for around 30 minutes. There was literally no other patients. It got me a bit upset, but I still tried to keep it cool. Our usual female doctor was not in the treatment room. Instead, we were greeted by a rude and obnoxious one.
It was a free service provided by the government, so I already expected to be looked down upon. She demanded to see the patient alone. I told her I was my boyfriend’s interpreter because he was just starting to learn English. She wasn’t happy about that, but proceeded to ask for back story. I translated everything my boyfriend said to her; however, she accused us of bullshiting. She didn’t believe in my boyfriend’s story and even ridiculed him. I was very angry, and said that I could confirm everything as I was his partner at the time. She told me to find a real interpreter and come back in the afternoon. To my boyfriend surprise, as he didn’t understood a word of what was said, she kicked us out. After I explained what had happened, he looked completely devastated. I felt like I let him down. When I apologized for being a useless partner, he just smiled and said: “Life isn’t fair. It’s ok, I can live with it.” He never came back to any clinic after that experience.
But sadly, after that day he began to change. He turned into a different man than the one he was when I first met him. He started avoiding me. He didn’t show affection anymore. He hated sex with me and sometimes pretended to be tired to get away from it. I was becoming like a friend with NO benefit. I had to make excuses for coming over to his place. I cooked meals for him, set up romantic dates or movie nights, but nothing seemed to work. Whenever I started an open and honest conversation about his health issue, he just changed the subject. He didn’t let me in because I couldn’t relate to his situation. He refused to share his feelings and thoughts.
He did tell me he suspected that his ex-boyfriend (with whom he was for 7 years) gave him the virus. To make it worst, his ex was also in town and my boyfriend began to hang out with him more and more. I seriously felt left out and it broke my heart. Arguments turned into fights. Soon enough communication completely fell apart. He eventually dumped me in September, and I begged him to come back to me. Yes I know, pathetic. I then realized how toxic the relationship had become for both of us. I decided to cut all ties in December.
I tried to be the better person and move on, but I couldn’t. For a few months after, my life somehow still revolved around him. We didn’t talk much, but stayed friends. It was confusing, I hated him and loved him at the same time. He knew that I was jealous but never really tried to put me at ease during our time together. I wasn’t always an angel, and I did some stuff that I regretted. Mistakes were made when I tried to take my anger and disappointment on him.
I approached his ex-boyfriend and had sex with him.
I know, it’s petty and I’m an evil twat with a twisted mind. I thought it was the perfect revenge, but I still feel miserable afterwards. I was hoping that my boyfriend would get jealous. I wanted him to feel what I felt. It turned out that he couldn’t care less. He had forgotten about me…
VIET TRAN (TEDDY)
Hi there! I’m the creator of The Offbeat Asian – the Lifestyle Blog where I share my journey to get through life as a young Asian gay guy. A lesson I have learned over the years is that if I keep my positive outlook when facing an issue, I will have a better judgement and handle it in a more reasonable manner. → View Full Profile