This weekend, Ken and I will be attending our third Rising Hope Retreat for HIV+ persons and their “partners” (widely interpreted as caregivers, sibling, parent, husband, wife, best friend, son, daughter, etc). To my knowledge, no other state does such a thing, and that’s too bad. It’s an incredible experience of witnessing relationships, gay and straight, and sharing the struggle to create and maintain relationships with other human beings in the face of HIV.
Ken and I are a sero-discordant couple: I’m Positive and he’s Not. Many of the HIV-related functions/causes we attend don’t recognize or even ask the question. In fact, Ken has said “I think people just assume I’m positive. That’s okay.”
Except that it’s not.
Recognition that HIV doesn’t have to be spread in a relationship is important. In fact, it’s probably one of the best sources of inspiration for others to have sex safely and responsibly; to create and maintain relationships that are life-giving and fulfilling despite serious issues, possible consequences and obstacles- not to mention HIV.
It can be done. It is being done. And Montana’s in the forefront of recognizing that. Who knew?