Today I had a conversation with a member of the NHS. Part of it went like this…
NHS employee: So didn’t you know your husband was gay when he died?
Me: He wasn’t my husband, he was my partner and the father of my child. He wasn’t gay.
NHS employee: Well how did he get it (HIV) then? Did he have a blood transfusion?
Me: I’ll never know but he had had unprotected sex. We had unprotected sex and I became HIV positive.
NHS employee: Yes but who gave it to him then?
Me: I assume, but will never know, someone who had sex with him.
NHS employee: So how long til you get full blown AIDS? Sorry if it’s a stupid question but I’m quite ignorant about all this stuff.
Me: Inside my head – no shit Sherlock. I’m sat chomping my tongue off by this point!
Now I was able to calmly (ish) respond to these questions and signpost this individual to information to learn. I also intend to write to the department formally and make some recommendations!
Fuming. We have such a long way to go.