Living with HIV for 25 years is no mean feat. That I took 11 years to be open about my HIV status says I had internalised HIV stigma. Being open about my HIV status since then has been the most powerful of experiences. It has created an extraordinary resilience and ability to challenge HIV stigma in all its insidious forms. I have a dream that if 25000 HIV Positive Australians disclosed their status at once we would significantly reduce HIV stigma. What disappoints me most is the rejection and the blocking by negative men even when my profile clearly states my HIV status - it seems that unless you overtly state "BTW have you read that I am HIV Positive" they ignore the obvious.Then voila you are persona non grata. We are all susceptible to contracting HIV so I say ENUF to HIV stigma - wake up and realise you might be in my shoes one day - then reflect on your current discriminatory attitudes.

Max Niggl