Where you so statistically sure that my "friend" would be HIV- that you didn't think his telling me a whole day after he knew that he was OK was that big a deal?
Did you think from his email that he does not take transmission risk seriously - or take my response to the results, or our situation, seriously?
Did you think it was wrong for me to post the emails?
Did you think it violated his privacy for me to post them even though our worlds do not cross over and the very few people we know in common don't know I write at all?
Did the whole situation make you uncomfortable? Was it too directly real? Too private?
Do you not understand my need to write all this out in this format because I feel so invisible, taken for granted, and alone with all these feelings?
Did you feel relief with me?
Do you not understand my anger towards him from what you know?
Do you judge me for the transmission risk in the first place?
Are you not involved enough to care (I'm not judging - just really asking)?
Is this too far away from your realities to relate?
Are you just very busy and forgot (- for people who know me).
Did you who did not respond not respond because you were unsure how to respond to transcriptions of emails rather than to my directly speaking about it?
Did you think I don't put my soul into the writing and need some real response back? - when it's important - not all the time - I understand people travel and live busy lives, and are not all bloggers. I'm just talking about when it really matters.
Do you have any questions for me? (besides Merelyme's which I apologize I hadn't answered until now -)
These were the questions she asked me first thing:
Are you mostly relieved he was negative?
Are you angry about his relationship with another?
No. We have had this relationship for over ten years where we have intense, very real, very honest, very realistic romantic week or two week interlude every year or two when our lives and lacks of other relationships have coincided. We respected and did not discuss each other's other relationships, and we made no promises to be broken of any kind. We used to both have relationships in between times. I haven't in the last six years (minus one bad two-night stand [see posts "Risk and Disclosure"]. This is the first time, we have had unprotected sex which was the most unexpected redeeming, humanizing, normalizing, good, exciting, beautifully close experience I have had in the last 21 of my HIV+ years. For him I guess it was just good sex - I am the only person he has up to now been safe with. He hates condoms. What I am mad about is that for some reason he decided, maybe because we did feel closer that he had the obligation to tell me the specifics of a "legitimate relationship" he is going to all the way to Afghanistan to "test out." I am mad that he didn't respect that he has no exclusivity obligations what-so-ever and has in the past respected my natural human feelings by being private to me about the relationships he can be public about. (I am a secret).
Merlyme then commented that it would seem I have a lot of conflicting emotions.
I have a lot of conflicting emotions. This is the most excruciatingly intimate time he could have chosen to suddenly disclose specifics, when she is the only one who needs to know specifics (about me) if he is not - and probably won't - be safe with her.
Merelyme lastly asked: At this point in your life... what kind of relationship do you want to have with someone?
I want what we had. My life is extremely high maintenance psychologically, psychiatrically, and physically. I can pull it together, with a lot of effort for about a maximum of two weeks at a time - to be my best - to be myself - to be who I would be able to be without all these problems. And we were very compatible and equal in the islands of time we shared. I don't want someone taking care of me. Knowing name and specifics about another who can be compatible in real life for longer or maybe ongoing spans of time before I even know how he is? I wanted it to continue the way it was - or end with the dignity of time. Not punctured like this.
The only other kind of relationship I would want would be with a long-term survivor with proclivities, and problems similar to mine. Equality matters to me. But there is no HIV/AIDS community to meet people in if you're not gay, and the POZ Match dating services are great, but I don't feel comfortable meeting anyone that way, and the only ones I have either had extreme (especially sexual) boundary issues problems, or addictions I'm not up to dealing with, or were gay (openly or implied) - who wanted families (which is great but my sexual identity is too wounded to go near that), or are actively Catholic which I don't trust - maybe wrongly - for the same reason.
If it doesn't speak for itself, this photo is here because I wish we could be seen at the same time. And I wish that I could feel that way again.