Tuesday, May 20, 2008

You Wouldn't Know It, But....

Last week, I begged, I mean asked for some suggestions for blog topics. I received a bounty of really good ideas and I'm working on those - not in order - but I WILL get around to all topics involved. Today, though, I want to touch on one by Rebecca from Carpe You Some Diem.

She suggested talking about "What is the one thing about you that nobody would guess? Like, you're secretly a champion pool player or something... something that not many people know about you."

So, that's where I'm going today.

However, some people - those who know me closest - may already know this about me.

A really close friend of mine - my senior prom date, in fact - visited last night. We've been friends since we were about 15 years old. I considered having him be my "Man of Honor" at my wedding, but back in 1993, that wasn't exactly a welcome trend.

My friend is a gay man, which is something I've known about him since we met.

What most people wouldn't guess about me, the conservative Republican, is that I have an enormous soft spot for gay people and even believe that they should be granted the same rights as other Americans. I know gay people can vote, but I'm talking about some of the other rights that they don't have and furthermore, what about just respect and understanding from the very people they work, live and play around?

I have both male and female gay friends, but mostly males.

I've spent years worrying about them, worried they may get sick (that's euphemistic language for AIDS in gay terms). I've lost two close friends to the disease.

Last night, my friend and I were drinking wine and he was drowning his tears... His boyfriend broke up with him a few days ago.

So he's all broken hearted and he tells me that his boyfriend disclosed that he is HIV positive prior to their relationship taking off. I have to give the guy credit - he was honest about it and gave my friend the opportunity to make an informed decision.

When my friend told me this, I gasped and said, "Oh, B, tell me you've been careful."

He shrugged.


He hasn't been tested recently.

Now, I know that HIV is not a guarantee that a person will have full blown AIDS and that many people can live fairly long lives despite being sick (look at Magic Johnson!), but I really don't want my friend to be sick.

It's been bothering me all night.


  1. I've known a fair number of gay people and they are just like everyone else and deserving of respect. I certainly hope your friend was safe and gets tested. I would be a nervous wreck in his situation and most likely would have ran the other direction when told about the situation in the first place. For as long as this disease has been around it seems odd to me that there is no cure yet. I will keep some positive thoughts headed his direction.

  2. I agree 100%. That is, with being a conservative Republican who has NO problem with homosexuality. I also agree with Ron, who I join in encouraging your friend to get tested - NOW. My husband works in this field and there are so many new therapies -- if your friend can start early (if he does test positive) -- he can look forward to an incredible quality of life. It's not the automatic death sentence it once was.

    I'm so sorry for your friend and what he's going through -- he has a lot on his plate -- but I'm glad he has you as a friend.

  3. I hope everything will be ok for your friend. I have a friend who wasn't so fortunate. He was diagnosed with HIV years ago. Thankfully his medication keeps him somewhat healthy and active but he is always concerned he will take a turn for the worse.
    Four years ago, he met a wonderful man at an HIV support group and they have been together ever since.

    My thoughts and prayers are with your friend...the break up is difficult enough and then to have to worry about health issues...how terrible for him.

  4. Gah! Knowing you're putting yourself at risk and not doing anything baout it is....silly.

    Here's hoping he's reistant, and that he finds a new and accepting love soon.

  5. Ron - thanks.

    WN - I encouraged him and hope he takes my advice.

    BG - Sadly, he knew what he was getting into. I'm more curious about the ex BF... he met someone willing to love him even with HIV and then leaves him? Not like he's primo real estate, kwim?

    Tiff - I know. I just shook my head when he told me.

  6. How awful to be worried about a friend whose heart has been broken! To find that there are health issues that he's not checked on yet only makes that worse.

    I pray for him that he finds he isn't HIV positive. I can see where he's not in a rush to get tested either. His heart is already broken right now. He has to know that no matter the results they are going to tell him he needs to keep getting tested in the very least.

    I hope he does go soon though. Sooner is better to start medication.

    Bless his heart. Haven't we all made some fairly dangerous decisions when faced with love and passion? I know I sure have.

  7. I know several gay people too of whom I enjoy their company. As you've read at my blog, I just don't like it when one (lesbian) comes on to me, lol!

    Hope your friend is ok. I also hope he is responsible enough for his earlier decision to be upfront about his own health risks to anyone he may get involved with in the future.

  8. Oh, I hope he'll get tested soon and then be very careful from now on. The boyfriend is one I'd say good riddance to, since he was HIV pos. and didn't tell before the break-up. That's criminal!

  9. Kenju - no, the boyfriend (ex) DID tell him before they did anything. I thought that was decent of him. But they were together a year and who knows what happended in that year? I don't ask for details....

  10. My heart goes out to him and to you (as a friend and that worry can be great).

  11. Wow! :( I hope your friend is OK and gets tested.

    Geez, how could you know THAT and not do everything in your power to keep yourself safe? I really hope the shrug was more like, "I dont' really want to talk about it" instead of "no, I didn't protect myself."

    {{{{{hugs}}}}} for both of you. I know this is difficult.

  12. Sorry I didn't have time to respond to everyone before I left this AM.

    BB - I know I've done plenty of stupid things in the name of love. My friend thought this guy was "it" for him....

    Carolyn - who can blame your lesbian? ;-)

    Diva - thanks. He's closer than a brother to me, really.

    Rebecca - He just felt like the risk was worth it (and no, the shrug was they weren't always protected). He even talked to his regular doctor about it months ago. :::sigh:::

  13. If anyone is keeping a tally, add me to the list of Conservative Republicans who doesn't have a problem with Gay Folk.

    And, add me to the list of military vets who don't have a problem with Gays in the military.

    Now, can we just do something about this dreadful HIV?

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