For a long time, having HIV was something that you wouldn’t want anyone to know, and you’d probably be embarrassed to be HIV +. However one man, and his family have made a move in an effort to change everyone’s beliefs on the disease and to help raise awareness.
Andrew Pulsipher, just a few days ago, posted a picture on Facebook which showed him and his family holding up paper with whether they were HIV+ or HIV-. All of this family except him are negative. Since sharing it, it’s been re-shared thousands of times.
Andrew is originally from Arizona, and he has had HIV since he was born, with both of his parents dying from complications to do with AIDS.
This is what Andrew wrote with the picture when he posted it:
I am sharing this with you because for the first time I can be completely honest with myself and others. This has taken me a very long time to be comfortable with (almost 34 years!).
He goes on to explain that HIV is fully treatable, and having it really doesn’t mean that you can’t have a normal life. He explains that he’s managed to get married and have children, which is a pretty big thing.
Whilst he was growing up, with his parents dying, he was brought up by his uncle and aunt, and decided that he didn’t want to tell many people about being HIV+ because of the stigma associated with it.
Obviously there would’ve been risks of having sex with others, and so when he met his wife, Victoria, he was worried that he would pass it on, and so they instead had their first child by utilising fertility treatment.
However, now, the virus is not detectable in his body, and whilst this means it could be hiding, it shows that the treatment he takes does work, and also that their second and third children were conceived perfectly naturally.
The treatment needed has also improved a lot, with Andrew saying that he only has to take three pills, once a day, whereas in the past treatment has been a lot worse.