If you have tested positive for HIV you may feel angry, depressed and alone.  The reality is that you will accept the disease and you will realise that there are millions of HIV positive people who are living a normal life.

Your focus should be on how you can manage the disease.  HIV positive people have access to support groups, HIV helplines and online HIV forums.  Share your emotions, thoughts, anxieties and stress with other people; it will assist you with accepting the disease.  Friends, family members, colleagues and counsellors can provide you with emotional support.

Look into life insurance, medical insurance and continue taking antiretroviral medication.  Finding a reliable medical insurance company will assist in lowering the costs of doctor’s fees, hospital visits and medication.  You will require regular check-ups and monitoring of your medication.  Life insurance will cover funeral costs and other expenses.  You will also provide your family with the security they require.  It is difficult for HIV positive people to accept that they could die from HIV related infections such as Tuberculosis or cancer.  There is always hope and HIV positive people can live a happy and healthy life.

Eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly and surrounding yourself with supportive and loving people will create confidence in managing your disease.  Educating people around you about HIV will provide you with a sense of purpose; you will feel like you can help other HIV positive people.

Select a work environment in which you feel comfortable.  It is highly recommended that people living with HIV minimise their exposure to unnecessary stress at work.  Stigma towards HIV positive people can cause stress and discomfort within a work environment.

Sexual intimacy is often a concern for HIV positive people.  Research shows that by using condoms and practising safe sex can minimise the spread of HIV to your partner.  People living with HIV should inform their partner of their status.  Feelings of betrayal and rejection could arise from withholding such important information from your partner.  You should also have your partner tested; in some cases both partners living with HIV can re-infect each other with a different strand of HIV.

The important part of living with HIV is to educate, accept and share your feelings with others.  You can make a difference by managing your HIV status and you can lead a happy and fulfilled life.