Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Security of PrEP

Well, when it came down to it...I couldn't do it.  I couldn't have unprotected sex to try to conceive, without PrEP. My husband was always a bit apprehensive about it, but I insisted that I felt comfortable and confident that my risk was practically non-existent. (I still think my risk is practically non-existent, but that's different from entirely non-existent)

For those who don't know what PrEP is, it is a new HIV prevention strategy for HIV negative individuals, who are exposed to HIV, that reduces their risk of becoming infected. It consists of taking an anti-HIV medication called Truvada, once a day before coming into purposeful or accidental contact with HIV.

We had discussed it, and made the decision to try to get pregnant without using PrEP this month.  I began tracking my cycle using an ovulation monitor.  Things were progressing as planned and I began daydreaming about how I'd react to a positive pregnancy test. Thinking about how I'd tell my husband, how we'd tell our family and friends, what a sweet big sister our daughter would be, etc. But the first morning that showed an increase in hormones that trigger ovulation, I was struck with the teeniest amount of fear. Suddenly that almost non-existent risk seemed significant. And for the next two mornings, that fear grew. On the morning the monitor showed I'd be ovulating, I knew in my gut that I couldn't go through with it.

I realized I need to have the security of PrEP as a safeguard in our efforts to conceive.

For me, the smallest, teeniest and most nominal amount of risk was monumental. It felt like stepping over a crack on the sidewalk and jumping over the Grand Canyon at the same time....either way, there was no way I was going to cross over.

I started to pressure myself, knowing that I'd have to make the decision THAT day or else wait another month to try to conceive. I thought about all the data, research, studies, etc. that shows low risk.  In the end, I thought about the moment I'd be looking at a positive pregnancy test again...and I decided that I only want to feel joy and elation.  I don't want even the smallest, teeniest amount of uncertainty because it would cloud over the moment for me. And I've fought too hard and too long to such a moment be anything but joyful elation.


3 comments:

STD Information said...

Internet Sites like Poz dating sites or support groups can be great places to meet with other people who already know what you're going through. Going into a date knowing that your partner has that in common with you can take a lot of the stress away. This can cut out Rule 2 altogether.

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Ivan Chang said...

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