Hey guys! I’m Jack Mackenroth and this is my video to anyone who was or is nearly diagnosed with HIV. Just a little bit of advice since I’m a veteran. I’ve been living with HIV for 24 years; diagnosed in 1989. Back then, I was just really concerned about survival. I thought I would be dead within a few years and it was a much different climate for HIV and AIDS than it is now. And that’s encouraging. First of all, what I want to say to you is you’re no different than you were before your diagnosis. You just found out something new about yourself but hopefully that doesn’t carry a lot of weight. I know it can be very shocking, but you’re still the same person. You’re still loveable, you’re still worthy, there are still people that want you. There’s a whole community out there of support for you.

So, HIV is one of the few diseases that carries a stigma with it. Mental illness is another one, drug addiction is another one. That’s just very unfortunate and I encourage you to do the best you can to not internalize that shame and not internalize that blame and instead use HIV as an opportunity to explore everything that you are and possibly help fight the stigma for everyone living with HIV by vocal, being a good role model, being an example to people around the world, people in your immediate surroundings.

But just know that you are supported, you are loved, you are worthy. I can’t stress that enough. And my other piece of advice would be get on treatment; get on treatment early. There are a lot of studies that show the earlier you get on treatment, the better your success and the results and can be. So, get with a physician you trust. Be very honest with them. Stay on your meds so the side effects are minimal. All that stuff is really good, so it’s really just about fighting the stigma, being empowered. If you need to reach out to someone like me, there’s a lot of people living with HIV that are doing really well.

I just wish you the best. You can find me on twitter @jackmackenroth or you can look me up on Facebook, whatever you need to do. So, best of luck to you. I know it can be a really scary time, but you’ll get through it and everything will totally be okay. I promise. Thanks.

Hello, it’s Timothy Ray Brown; the first person to be cured of HIV. Keep supporting research, keep working toward ending HIV stigma. This is conduction with You’ve Got This and Healthline.com. I’d like to throw a shout-out to the HIV Influencers Honors and the work that they’ve been doing in the HIV Community. Thank you.

Hey, what’s up? My name is Josh and as you can see, I am driving---

Hey, what’s up? My name is Josh and I am---

Let’s get real, okay?

On January 24, 2012, I found out that I was living with HIV after about three weeks of being sick. It was a pretty tough day. I was scared because HIV was something I didn’t want; I didn’t know about and I was nervous to have to tell my friends and family. I felt like a disappointment and it was pretty tough.

But since that time, there are some amazing things that I have learned and discovered. So, I really encourage you to use this change in your life for something even more amazing than you could ever consider.

I’m still me, you’ll still be you. Now, if you want to make a video like mine and have the awesome people at Healthline, hello, post your video on their website, then follow these simple instructions and get it back to them.

Hi guys! It’s Ji Wallace sending you a video message all the way from Down Under in Australia. It’s winter here, so we’re all rugged up inside. I’ve been asked to share a little story, a very quick story of how I deal with the day to day basics of living with HIV. When I first found out that I was living with HIV, I just wanted to scream at the world, ‘Know your status!’ If you know your status, then you can make really clear, defined, and educated decisions on how you’ve got to approach your life.

I’m in a very lucky position that I’ve got amazing friends and amazing family that support me, but my one thing for everybody out there is: It’s okay. You’ve got this. You’re life is your life to live. Don’t let HIV control who you are. Don’t let HIV dictate who you want to be. The world is open to you and I say ‘chase it’.

Once again, Ji Wallace calling from Australia to the You’ve Got This initiative. Thank you.

Hi, this is Ongina from Season 1 of RuPaul’s Drag Race. Some of you may not know but I was diagnosed with HIV back in April of 2006. I wanted to reach out to you because if you’ve recently been diagnosed with HIV, don’t worry. You’ve got this. I know this because I went through it myself. I found support from my family and my friends and no matter difficult the day got or how difficult the situation became, I knew that I had this because I had the most amazing friends and family. And you do, too! So, please, stay happy, stay healthy, and lots of love from me, Ongina. And you know what? Don’t worry because I know that you’ve got this.

Hi. It’s Mark and I’ve been living with HIV for 30 years. Yes, that’s 3-0. That means I’m old, but keep listening. But here you are, watching videos online to get some encouragement after your HIV positive test result. That’s a very good sign. That means you’re smart enough to reach out for support when you need it. And that’s why I love this campaign, You’ve Got This.

Got what? That’s what you’re thinking, right? I got what? I’ve got HIV. Yeah, well you do. But you also have the ability to take action. Let me tell you some things you’re going to be hearing from people.

“Oh it’s not so bad. People live long lives.” They do.

“There are great medications. You’re going to be fine.”

Okay, that’s all very nice, but you may not be hearing it. I mean the fact that is that you might be shocked after being tested HIV positive. It is a major life event. So, allow your emotions to process this if you need to. If you need to freak out a little bit, that’s perfectly understandable. But not too long. Deal with it and get to work. You are going to be your own best advocate. See your doctor, take your meds, make a plan, and ask questions. You need to get educated about this. If your doctor doesn’t like explaining things, find another one. You’re the boss. Your doctor works for you.

Remember something: Testing HIV positive is not the last thing that’s going to happen to you. After I tested positive, I found a new job. After I tested positive, I moved to a new city. After I tested positive, I fell in love, a couple of times.

My life is pretty full. I go to the gym, I have fun with my friends, I work alongside my doctor, I even do drag sometimes for fun. It makes me laugh and laughter is good for your T cells. Don’t judge. I even write a blog about being an out, HIV positive man. I’m kind of out about a lot of things.

So, in a review, freak out a little bit if you want to, but not too long, get to work, make a plan with your doctor, do some drag….wait, wait, I don’t think you have to do drag. And look forward to the rest of your long, productive, and joyful life. You’ve got this.

Hi, I’m Paul Lekakis and this fall will be the 25 year mark that I’ve been living with HIV. Has it been easy? Absolutely not. But, I’m still here. So, the best thing I could tell you is if you take care of yourself and, you know, that you can handle it, that you’ve got this if you take care of yourself. Now, I’m not a saint and I’ve made a lot of very large decisions in my life in order to stay healthy and I will continue to do so because I’m worth it. I am living proof and, just so you know, if you ever feel down, 25 years later, I’m still here.

This is Buddy. He’s my dog, he loves me.

You’ve got this. So, don’t worry so much. Just participate in your recovery from HIV. Thanks

You’ve got to live. L-H-I-V!

PH: Hey, what’s going on guys? This is Thunder.

T: And that’s Phalcon.

PH: What’s going on?

T: How you all doing? Listen, we’re here to educate you all and do this whole PSA. What we do is we talk about LHIV, Living with HIV. We’re both living with HIV. This is my best friend, my brister and my sister.

PH: They should put that in the dictionary.

T: A brister. Well, I actually got it from somebody on another line. But that’s not what we’re here to talk about today. We’re just talking about living with HIV and we want to tell you that you can live with HIV no matter what’s going on with you. I’ve been living with HIV for….

PH: Hold up, hold up, hold up. I got this. I want to go first.

T: Alright.

PH: Well, I’ve been living with HIV since 2011. It’s been over two years now and, you know, it’s been a roller-coaster, you know what I mean. But I’ve been…I’ve got great support, my family and everyone loves me, I’ve got this person here that’s, uh my nerve.

T: My best friend.

PH: I got him to rap with me. It’s one pill a day. It’s one pill at night. You go to bed, take a pill, and that’s it. I’m living, I look good, I feel good….

T: Now, hold up. I got this. Let me finish my story. I’ve been living with HIV since 1997.

PH: Whoo….That’s a long time.

T: Yes, I am 37 years old, thank you.

PH: 31! I’m sorry, I had to tell my age.

T: Can you please stop? Anyway, I’ve been living with HIV since ’97 and I have been living well. I take three pills a day and its okay. You’ve got this. If you find that you’re HIV positive, you can live.


T: You’ve got this.

PH: It’s easy I promise you.

T: Yes. Yes. Live! Bye y’all.

Hi, my name is Zak Kostopoulos and I’m sending you this message from Greece. I’ve been living with HIV for four years now and it’s been quite a journey but not an unpleasant one, all the way. I know that, if you’re newly diagnosed, if it’s something new to you, it might seem terrifying, it might seem like something you think you cannot handle, but trust me, you can. You can live a full and happy life living with HIV as long as you don’t let it get the best of you and you don’t give up.

First of all, I think it’s very important that you seek and you find support, whether it’s from friends, family, online, your local community, or professional help. I strongly believe that you should not face it all by yourself. In my case, I almost immediately told my close friends and I’ve been very lucky and it’s been very helpful to have their support from day one.

Also, I know that being diagnosed with HIV comes with a big amount of stigma and discrimination and stereotypes you’ll have to face, but it’s nothing to be ashamed about and no matter what anybody says and the fact that you have HIV does not make you unworthy or dirty or anything like that, it just makes you human. You’ll see that you will find that other people who feel the same way and will love and support you for who you are because you’re basically the same person.

Living with HIV, seek support, do whatever you have to to keep yourself healthy, start treatment, and if you know someone who’s living with HIV, if you have a friend or a family member, a colleague or whatever, you don’t have to change the way you act around them. You don’t have to change the way you treat them. It’s still the same. There’s nothing to be afraid of.

So, basically, I think that’s about it. Just don’t give up. Keep on smiling. Fight the stigma. Fight the stereotypes. Be yourself. And love. That’s all, thank you bye.

Hello, this is Staldons King from Las Vegas, Nevada and if you’ve been newly diagnosed with HIV, you’ve got this. When I was newly diagnosed, I was very emotional and very upset about everything. But with a lot of support and a lot of love, I made it through. And you can get that from anywhere, you can get that from friends, you can get that from everybody, you can get that from the community. Anybody and everybody is going to be able to love you and help you get through anything you need to get through.

I just want you to know to stay strong, stay positive, and you will make it through and you will be happy. You’ve got this.