Love Positive Women

A disclaimer: I am not so young anymore. However, I go through these streets as the people’s favourite aunty, the coolest prevention activist, young people say I am “oppit”, or in more traditional lingo, “with it”. As February, the legit month of love, has come to an end, I’m reflecting on love, relationships, sex and living with HIV.

You see, 19 years ago, when I was 25, I was diagnosed with HIV. I feel like this gives me a free pass to write about being HIV-positive and dating.

I realised very early on that I was facing a triple challenge: being a woman, being a black woman and being a black woman with HIV. It means triple the stigma and triple – or what sometimes felt 10-fold! – the struggle to deal with life, sensuality, relationships, the future. I thought (and still think) that it is easier for HIV-positive men to date than it is for us women in a similar situation.

But my view has always been that, for one to love others, you need to love yourself enough first. To give love, you need to have love to give. That is why I was able to identify non-loving actions from a partner and let go before it became toxic. But for many, this is not the case. Many women feel the need to be loved by another person and that is how they give up their agency and self-love.

Our entire society needs to change the view of what love is, and see that women who are HIV-positive deserve love and can be loved, too. There are days like Valentine’s Day that focus on love. I’m calling on us all to celebrate “inclusive” love – “positive love” and love between discordant couples is LOVE too!

If we want HIV-neutral messages, we must show it. Many people are totally fine with dating people of unknown status rather than knowingly dating people living with HIV, even if the virus is undetectable and their status is essentially untransmittable. Being HIV-positive should not be a barrier to love, sex or dating. We all deserve to love and be loved.

As your favourite aunt, I urge HIV-positive readers to accept their HIV status. You can find healing. Loving yourself means understanding what love means, being open to love and putting yourself first.

Being HIV-positive for 19 years, and in my opinion, managing to age beautifully and graciously with HIV, I have come to accept that being over 40, HIV-positive AND dating can be an extreme sport. Right up there with speed boats and bungee-jumping.

With love from Your Coolest Aunt

12 Comments Add yours

  1. eebest8 best says:

    “I think this is a real great article.Really looking forward to read more. Keep writing.”

  2. lungile says:

    amazing article, I love the positive and optimistic energy from it

  3. eebest8 michael says:

    “Really appreciate you sharing this post. Awesome.”

  4. Lulu Vilakati says:

    I’m in love wt yo energy doll, it resembles mine 😂, I also live happily n lovingly wt the virus, I feel nothing can stop me , coz even the sky cannot n will not limit me….Power to positive living 💪

  5. I like what you guys are up too. Such intelligent work and reporting!
    Carry on the superb works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to my blogroll.

    I think it will improve the value of my site :).

  6. erflector says:

    Hey! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone!Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to allyour posts! Carry on the fantastic work!

  7. wtelvemonth says:

    Pretty! This has been an incredibly wonderful article.Thanks for providing this info.

  8. HoVidos says:

    I really like it when folks come together and share ideas.
    Great website, continue the good work!

  9. Yvette says:

    I don’t unremarkably comment but I gotta tell regards for the
    post on this perfect one :D.

  10. Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is
    an extremely well written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it
    and return to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post.
    I’ll certainly comeback.

  11. yvette says:

    thank you everyone for reading

  12. MixSpoma says:

    Thank you very much for the invitation :). Best wishes.
    PS: How are you?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *