“All this time I still didn’t know how I got HIV.”

My name is Faith* and I’m 15 years old from Westmoreland.

When I was in grade six, I was about 12 years old and I got sick. My neck was swelling and I was vomiting and my mom took me to the hospital. When I went, I did a few tests but they didn’t show anything wrong; and the doctor said to do an HIV test. I got the results back and when my mom told me that I was HIV positive, I couldn’t believe it. ‘How did I catch HIV?’

I was stressed. I didn’t want to eat. I felt a way, I felt like I should kill myself. I didn’t want to see anybody.

I was in the hospital for at least three months. When I was released I was given medication to take, but I didn’t really know what HIV was – so I didn’t take it. When my mom gave it to me I would throw it away or put it in my bag.

So, I had to go back to the hospital where I met Dr Barnett who talked to me; and asked me if I knew what HIV Is. I said no. He said HIV is a sickness you catch from having sex; but I wasn’t having sex.

All this time I still didn’t know how I got HIV.

One day, I called him and said I really wanted to know what HIV is – he asked me who I was having sex with. That’s when I told him when I was younger, my uncle used to rape me at night; when my mother was sleeping.

He was the first person I ever told what I went through. A few weeks later I was introduced to Eve for Life.

When I came to my first meeting at Eve for Life I met a lot of girls that have HIV. The first time I went I was scared, but I got to meet people. Every time I come to the meetings I learn what HIV is and how to prevent it.

When I started coming to the meetings; I was having a problem with my mother – she said I was having sex with men at my young age and got HIV. She would curse me and honestly, I felt to kill myself. But I would call Rushell, my mentor and she would tell me to ignore what my mother said; and take care of myself instead.

I love being around the ladies from Eve for Life. I feel better, I feel happier. I take my medication and go to the doctor when I’m supposed to. I’m still having the same problem with my mother, and I don’t have a relationship with my father; but I have my sister – and I have Eve for Life.

My uncle went to prison and died. Through counseling I have learned to forgive but if I could speak to him I would tell him he was wrong to have sex with me and give me HIV.

My advice to young girls that are in the same position I was in is to get help. Eve for Life is the right place to get that help.

*Name changed to protect identity. 

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Comments:

  1. God bless you my child. You are special, you are here for a purpose. Your mother needs help, she needs counseling. She is not ready to be a mother. She is ignorant. Pray for her.