Everybody must be tested

Source: Everybody must be tested – DailyNews Live

9 October 2019

EDITOR – As we approach World Aids Day, celebrated on December 1 every
year since 1988, there is need to upscale awareness on HIV testing. There
is no point in shunning testing and counselling centres as long as one is
sexually active. People seem scared of visiting these centres because they
might discover the worst. This is a foolish mentality because if you are
HIV positive, denying it doesn’t make you well.

Rather it exposes you to the conse- quences of Aids which were experienced
back in the days when the disease first reached our shores.

Getting tested and knowing your sta- tus helps you to act swiftly and
reduces the damage caused by the virus to your body before it’s too late.
It also helps you to monitor your diet (especially for those who smoke and
drink, even those who occasionally eat fast foods or do braais).

Most importantly however, it prevents infections and reinfec- tions with
your partner which speeds up the spread of the virus in your system.

Refusing to go for testing and counselling is like a farmer who
dissociates himself from any source of meteorological information
preferring only to act when the rains fall. Such a farmer can never make
an im- pact upon society because he is always caught unawares by

Forewarned is forearmed. We are all victims of the decisions we make or
choose not to make. The consequences of our actions decide our destinies.

Times are changing and advanced drugs that target HIV-related infections
are being discovered everyday. Some people prefer not to take these
medicines and live like their healthier friends and acquaintances.

This again will only lead to problems because if you are sick you are sick
and pretending to be well doesn’t make you any better than pretending to
be a pilot makes you one.

Accepting your condition and find- ing out how you can survive with it is
wiser and more beneficial.

Some people have a defeatist mental- ity when it comes to dealing with

I have heard that there are some who go around wilfully infecting other
people with the virus because someone they trusted infected them too.

So in a wild display of vengeance they target unsuspecting people and
infect them, sometimes even forcefully.

This is childish thinking and it only exposes the infected person to
danger. In certain cases, one ends up sleeping with someone who has
fully-blown Aids and your condition becomes worse afterwards.

I have heard that some people go to witchdoctors who tell them to sleep
with a virgin in order to rid themselves of the disease.

People should know better.

This is just another way of spread- ing the virus to innocent and
vulnerable members of society.

Sometimes one gets the virus from their promiscuous partners and they
become bitter and resentful to the point of wanting to fight back. The
solution to this bitterness is simple counselling. If an experienced
counsellor helps you, you have a whole new way of seeing your ordeal.

As a nation, we should strive to make Zimbabwe a better place because no
one will do it for us.

Think about it. It takes a brave person to confront reality.

Go and get tested today. And every- body should get tested and be aware of
your status.