VIDEO Never thought that I would get HIV at 16.
I'd always used condoms, until I went on the pill. From then on
I stopped using them. When I was 16, my boyfriend and I took an HIV
test together. I couldn't believe it when his came back positive.
My result was negative. This could mean one of two things:
either I wasn't infected, or it was not yet traceable in my blood.
Three nerve racking months followed, in which I had to return every
month for a test. It seemed to be going well; the first tests were
negative. After 3 months, the news came that I was, after all,
infected. My world came crashing down around me.
In the years that followed, I buried my
head in the sand. I told very few people. Only when I split up with
my boyfriend, did I learn to accept what had happened to me. I was
regularly forced to face the truth…how do you react when a boy
flirts with you and wants more? "Sorry, I just need to tell you
It hurt that boys seemed to like me, until they found out I was
HIV positive. Even some parents showed me the door. These things
really affected me. What could I do? And even if I found someone
mad enough to want to be with me, how would I have children? And
what about a job? Would I have to tell my boss?
But these experiences have brought me to where I am today. I'm
doing well. I now volunteer for dance4life, telling High School
students that I am HIV positive. People are often startled by what
I have to say - I'm so 'normal'… my story could also be theirs. And
that is exactly why young people need to get the correct
information about HIV and AIDS. dance4life also challenges the
discrimination that people like me face every day. Because that
happens. Even today. Even in the Netherlands.
Break the silence around HIV and share this story!