Illustration of woman giving food to another woman. Hello. My name is Alessandra Blásquez. I was diagnosed in April of 2004. I wasn't that worried when I learned I was HIV positive because I knew I could be treated. What I didn't know was that medications are very expensive. I thought I wouldn't be able to afford the medicines, but it turned out that some insurance plans would cover medication costs.

The first person I talked to about my diagnosis was my dad. He was really upset because he thought that meant I didn't have long to live. My parents didn't know much about HIV/AIDS. For my dad, my diagnosis landed like a bomb. For me, the transition from male to female seemed much more difficult to manage than my diagnosis because I am aware of different support groups and help to get medication for HIV. So, that's why I wasn't overly affected when I was first diagnosed with HIV. Continue reading...

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