What is HIV/AIDS? 173
The HIV test should only be done:
• with your permission.
• with counseling before and after the test.
• with privacy. Only you and those you want to know should know the results.
A trained HIV/AIDS counselor can help you decide if you need to get tested for HIV.
If your test is positive, the counselor can help you decide how to face this change in
Counseling for HIV-infected people and
their families can mean the difference
between hope and helplessness. As an
HIV-infected woman from Kenya says,
“When you meet a good counselor, you
feel as if you have healed.”
A good counselor can help you make decisions and think about many problems
and complicated situations, such as:
• how to accept that you or your partner has HIV.
• when and how to tell others (disclose) that you have HIV.
• how to continue having sex and to have sex safely when one partner has HIV and
the other partner does not.
• where to get condoms and how to use them.
• where to get and how to take medicines and get treatment for illnesses caused by
• how to decide if you should get pregnant when either you or your partner is HIV
positive, and how to prevent passing HIV to a baby.
• where to get food, housing, legal advice, or other help you or your family may
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007