Women Living with HIV

Where Do I Fit In?

I have been in counseling for over a year now. At first, I was very skeptical and let’s face it, defensive. No one wants to think they can’t handle the stuff in their lives on their own. I have been taking care of myself in that fashion since I was 14. I moved out at 16, had my first child at 18, the next one at 22, and from then on have been a mother.

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The Best I Feel I Can Do

Imagine waking up every day not knowing how long you’re going to be alive because you can’t even get a ride to the doctor for treatment. Now, on top of that, you have two children that depend on you.

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Mr. and Mrs. Quest

No more did I concentrate on men who only wanted me in the shadows and in the midnight hour. Luckie was teaching me that as a HIV+ trans woman of color I deserve to be love and treated with respect. We have been very successful with PrEP In our lives, it’s helped us maintain Luckie’s HIV- status. I hope by sharing our different love paths to each other, we can inform the community that love has no fear when it’s love leading the way.

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My HIV Story

This is why I force myself to take my meds every day, to hang on to still be here for my kids. They may be adults now, but they still have a place in their lives where I fit in.

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What HIV means to ME! Havoc Into Victory

I arrived at the clinic with my two youngest children. Sitting in the waiting area everything appeared to move in slow motion. A barrage of thoughts swirled through my head. My nerves were all over the place. Finally I heard my name called. I immediately snapped back into reality. The walk down the hallway to the office room was as though I was walking to death’s chair. The nurse walked in and said Ms.Thomas, “I’m not going to beat around the bush. Your HIV test came back positive.” In that moment, my heart dropped in my stomach. I felt numb all over. Her words were final.

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Behind Prison Doors

How do I get through it all, a man that I thought the world of, a man that took me from the streets and helped me get on my feet with a job, a nice place to live, and practically gave me the world had also given me something that I must deal with for the rest of my life, and now I’m on my way to be Behind Prison Doors?

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Life After Diagnosis

Through sharing my story, I want to reduce the stigma in our lives and show others that there is truly life after HIV diagnosis. I also want to teach others how to advocate for themselves when it comes to protection, stigma, and healthcare.

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Nothing to Joke About

I’m in a position in life right now where I’m living poor. At the moment, my lights are off, I have no way to get back and forth to the doctor, I haven’t been on meds since I gave birth to my daughter in march 2016, and it’s hard to find work where I live.

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My Life from (D) Day

I became pregnant with my third kid, and who knew, she would be my last. Six months into my pregnancy, I found out I have HIV.

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HIV and Answered Prayers

I had eventually hit my bottom, where I had to get into treatment. At that time I had a beautiful healthy son. I completed a drug program, got my own place and was in a new relationship. I decided to get tested because my significant other and I wanted a baby. I found out that I was HIV-positive.

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I’m HIV+ and I Care about Trans Rights

I want to do the right thing to. I’m only a kid and I can’t vote yet. But I can do other things. I have a mind and a voice. I can use it to help other people, just like I was helped. I want to be treated with respect and to have rights, and I want other people to have them too. We all deserve them.

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Around the World: Finding Hope

I used to think that life without heroin was no life at all. All my time was spent making sure I had money and dope. I wouldn’t go to bed without a wakeup [drugs for the morning]. Now, I can go to the symphony, or a revival of the Rocky Horror Picture Show. I can go spend time at the Academy of Science in Golden Gate Park. Those things are really interesting to me, and now I can do them, because I’m sober and living a better life.

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Reborn

I have been HIV positive since 2007. Two months after I found out I was positive, I had my baby. He is now nine years old and is HIV free.

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Thank You

From Lev (Elena’s husband)-
I want to add a small message of my own personal gratitude to the people of HIVE and Ward 86.

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Yes, I Can

3 years ago, while living in Moscow, Russia I was diagnosed with HIV. Today I live in San Francisco, my viral load is undetectable, my CD4 count is at a normal level, and 2 months ago I gave vaginal birth to my healthy, HIV-negative son.

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My Fear as a Teen with HIV

It’s almost National Youth HIV Awareness Day. Last year I wrote something about it that was positive. This year I’m having a hard time being positive. Maybe it’s because I’m a teenage girl and because of puberty I’m really sensitive about everything. But I don’t think that’s all. I think as I get older certain things about me having HIV get harder.

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Alejandra Cruz

Alejandra Cruz is an amazing fashion designer, hairdresser, & makeup artist who lives in San Francisco with her dog, Chichi. She is originally from Puerto Rico. She is a transgender woman living with HIV.

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