This video from StuartProduction, Kevin Tillman talks about his life with HIV part 1/2.
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Female: You're watching an RH Reality Check Production brought to you by rhrealitycheck.org. Kevin Tillman: I'm Kevin Tillman, I'm a 44-years-old and I'm the composer and residence for triangle—. I actually tested positive in 1989 and back in those days, you test and positive for HIV for a lot of people that was a death sentence, basically because you found out. So I like I had unprotected sex which was completely reckless of me. I was so afraid of being rejected and had such a low opinion of myself that that all that really played into taking risks and not protecting myself. I was devastated because it’s just your basically in a state of mourning. For me back then it was you know how long do I have but it’s also you're mourning the end of life as you knew it. I told my parents early but that was difficult. The hardest part for them was not that I had HIV because I was healthy and everything was fine but they didn’t understand that you could have HIV and be healthy. So a lot of costs with my parents were questions about basically their waiting for the other shoe to drop. Telling the first couple of people that I had HIV ones I got passed that and learn that I wasn’t in it alone that meant all the world, it made all the difference. Because I knew that there are so many people out there that are, they just feel like an island in a sea. And that’s a pretty lonely place to be. You have people who loose friends and family over HIV, literally they will just turn then out of hope. I am absolutely, positively beyond the show of a doubt blast. That that my dearest friends and family have not and one of the things I learned was there—you can't please all the people all the time and they're not, not everybody is going to be supportive. And you can still love them but if one of the big things about HIV is stress will get you and you have to know when to say “I love you” but you need to move on, because that’s the hardest rather than goodbye. The other thing has been all of the people you’ll loose. It doesn’t happen as much now. And sometimes the ones that do just come out of the blue because there really wasn’t any valuable healthcare for people HIV back then. And there was no motivation for care because that people were just horribly, horribly under informed. We’re talking pre 95, so you had maybe two drugs to treat HIV then. And those drugs only held up for so long and they were really toxic. So it was—some of the folks who bought and living on borrowed time. I know for me that I went from one treatment to another because my liver just doesn’t like some of these things. I was on this for a long time, I looked almost alien. It was kind of funny but. And HIV is just disease it doesn’t show any boundaries or favorites or in this case least favorites. There is no really target population. It’s not a moral disease. And a lot of people try to make at that and that’s what makes it so hard for so many people. I think there is this, no, I know there is this perception that basically aids is over and that’s just not true.