Hearing a specialist confirm that you have AIDS tends to make you wonder about a lot of things that you may have never thought of before. For instance, “Can I sit in the subway without people figuring out that I have a sexually transmitted disease?” “Is it okay for me to kiss my parents on the cheeks like I used to do?” “Can I hug my nieces and nephews without passing on the illness to them?” In short, AIDS can push a confident individual to doubt everything that they can or cannot do regularly.
The silver lining when it comes to acquiring AIDS in the 21st century is that disease-free people are more accommodating to the ill ones than ever. Most of them do not feel isolated and even have friends to defend or support them in times of need. Others get invited to become a public speaker and talk about social awareness regarding AIDS prevention. They are highly credible to do the latter because: a) they know how awful it can be to have AIDS, and b) they can teach life lessons to everyone based on their experience.
Despite all that, the individuals who have this sexually transmitted disease are not exempted from rejection. Sometimes, jobs and dates turn them away. Other times, their families cannot accept the fact that they have AIDS.
“Rejected LGB youth were 8.4 times more likely to have tried to commit suicide, 5.9 times more likely to report high levels of depression, 3.4 times more likely to use illegal drugs, and 3.4 times more likely to have risky sex,” writes Perry N. Halkitis, PhD, MS.
It is impossible to sugarcoat how sad it feels to get rejected by the people who are supposed to support you, but that’s life. All you can do is deal with rejection after revealing your disease to people. Here are a few tips on what to do.
Avoid Listening To Ridicules
The first thing is to stop absorbing the negative words that your bashers throw at you. You already know how negatively they feel about you. They may have expressed it in front of your face several times, and their ridicules have always hurt you. So, try not to be a masochist by staying idle when they start saying mean stuff about you. Retreat and look for other genuine people instead. It may also help to seek support from online counseling apps like BetterHelp. Or instead, you can focus your attention on bettering yourself by watching helpful and healing YouTube videos.
“A crisis such as this may give them permission to have and express these feelings,” Edward Dunbar, PhD, says. “People who have had painful experiences and no opportunities to heal tend to be more hostile in general, and they more easily channel their hostility toward groups the society is also against.”
Be Okay With The Reality That Not Everyone Will Understand
Even if your illness may not be AIDS, people are ready to give their negative opinions if you do something that’s out of the norm. For instance, you drop out of college on your last semester to become a freelancer. You start dating right after splitting with your boyfriend. Not everyone will be supportive because they do not understand how your life works, and that’s nothing to get frazzled about.
Seek Support From Groups
In case your family and friends no longer want to get associated with you, you can seek support from non-profit organizations. Having trained counselors by your side who will guide you throughout can help you cope with feelings of rejection and loneliness. They are the ones who are spreading AIDS awareness and helping the patients live freely in society. For sure, they will not hesitate to take you in if you ask.
“Social support networks are key to preventing HIV transmission, to professional caregivers, to immediate family members providing direct care, in the bereavement process following AIDS-related death, and for the HIV-positive individual,” writes David H. Whitcomb, PhD.
Getting rejected after revealing that you have AIDS can usually feel like death. You may get depressed and think that no one will love you anymore. You may not be able to stop replaying the ridicules that keep on rolling in your direction. However, you should not dwell on such ill feelings because you need all your strength to survive with this disease.