People say that a lot in a lot of different ways. When you are starting that teenage transition, when death of a loved one happens suddenly, after surviving trauma. Because killing yourself is not an option. a permanent answer to a temporary issue or concern. So then why is the rate of suicide so high amount HIV+ people. I would be dishonest if I said I haven’t thought about it, more often in the past year then ever in my life before but, it is not an option. Not saying that I do not see the value in the thought process. Faced with an end stage illness or no possible type of recovery from whatever, I suppose I see the value. When I was young a family friend killed himself. It was his option. He was kind and loving and a good carpenter. One moment he was fixing my families kitchen cabinets, next moment he was dead, stone cold and dead. So many people have died this past month, the count is climbing as the news of the death of my son in laws grandmother has just arrived. Still there is a difference between being 90+ and in failing health and being late 30’s to 40’s. Still HIV+ folks have a very high rate of self inflicted death. So why? The concept that life can be just as great as it was before is a bunch a shit for a long time and for a lot of people. Families disown people, employers fire people – even if it is illegal, friends don’t know what to say to people.. isolation and increasing debt and pressure from all things that make up life increase the use of drugs & alcohol among HIV+ is one thought.. there is much written about how people are too sick to work and make ends meet but not sick enough for disability. If I work too much I get so tired that I get sick and too much is no longer defined by 60+ hours a week, it is limited to 24. I became a “protected population” a person with a disability but what does that mean? Many people would be thrilled if all the HIV+ people killed themselves, you can read about violence against HIV+ people in most anything you pick up. Due to the lack of common knowledge, the fear and the blame that follows this stigma you can find people to be on that side of things without much effort. But what about living life. What about doing all we can do to maintain our lives. When I was in grad school about to do my comp presentation half of my committee pulled out or quit the college or was unavailable. After all that prep work and deadlines and such it was then that I understood the frustration higher education can cause and how there is no safety guard to protect the students – or the professors or staff. Now I am in this land of a big mess. I read about long-term HIV+ survivors and how great their lives are and I read about some who did not make it that far. I ponder what to do in this waste land. For me it is not an option but, that doesn’t mean I don’t think about it. I have life insurance.. at some point we all become worth more dead then alive. But i don’t want that. I want to be able to live my life as it maybe, to tend to my kids needs and take care of myself to live long long time. How that is going to be accomplished I have no idea. My last side effects wiped me out, my paycheck will be for less then the car payment. /It is the end of the month, there is rent, utilities, car insurance, food, the list continues. I understand most people live hand to mouth in this economy I just don’t know how to get through to the other side. Painfully not safe in this small town. Not that the people who know would be a danger or my healthcare team but from people in general. It is easy when there are only a dozen or so “odd” ones for those odd ones to be singled out and targeted. Really what group of people is going to say “Hey give to this family recently infected with HIV so that they can pay the rent, car payment and just survive” Too many judgments to be made in that sentence for people to just be helpful. It is the nature of the beast and why some folks do make it an option. As for me, I am not sure how this is going to work out, there isn’t any money for me to pay the rent, insert most other things that come due everything month here. My health has sucked the last three weeks with the increase in deaths and stress so my income has dropped. That is it really a+b=c. My idea of living in an area with a bit more support and not so much fear requires moving, which requires money, which requires working and making enough to cover bills and moving. That equation is not up to par at the moment. I am just starting not to shake all over when I walk, and I haven’t fallen into a wall all day today.. progress. Funny really, how it becomes apparent that this is not right but, does that make it wrong?