I had a conversation with a coworker about the porn business using condoms because of the HIV scare. She then said she used to work for Planned Parenthood and felt so sorry for the people who tested positive because "that was their death sentence".
I looked at her and asked what she meant. She said no one would want to be with someone sexually who's HIV positive so that would basically mean that person would be alone for the rest of his/her life and testing positive only meant that person would eventually die of AIDS.
The first thing that came out of my mouth was, "I'm HIV positive." She stared at me. I smiled and continued saying, "Well, technically I was diagnosed with AIDS in 2003 so technically, I have AIDS." She apologized. I shrugged and told her it wasn't her fault I had AIDS. She blushed ~ the first time I ever made a woman blush! ~ she apologized if she had offended me with her previous comments. I told her she had nothing to apologize for. I appreciated her honesty for I had also thought I had a death sentence when I first heard I was positive 18 years ago but what did offend me was the lack of knowledge she had about HIV/AIDS. Especially since she had worked at Planned Parenthood.
After a couple of questions and some honest answers, I felt closer to her. That's one of the things I hold very dear to me….honesty. She didn't hold back and neither did I. I think we came to a mutual respect for each other but at the same time….I realized, even in this day and age, people still think of HIV as a death sentence.