4 items tagged "disclosure"

Results 1 - 4 of 4

Telling others or keeping it to yourself?

Strangely, for many people, the most difficult thing about living with HIV is not so much the condition itself or thevertellen treatment, but the way some people react to you. You might continue to wonder for the rest of your life: ‘Whom should I tell about my HIV? And when should I bring it up?’ Or do you choose to keep it to yourself? People will very often reactive in a positive way if you tell them about your HIV. But sometimes you might also get a negative reaction, and that can have a huge impact. If you decide to tell certain people but not others, can you trust those people not to tell anyone else? For many people with HIV it is a very gradual process: as time goes on, they tell it to more and more people. But it can also happen that someone is very open about it at first but later decides not to tell any new people about it, for example if he or she starts a new job.

Telling others about your HIV?

As soon as possible
If I really like someone, I want to tell him about my HIV as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more painful it will be if the person doesn’t accept it.

Less likely to give in to anxiety
If I tell someone during a chat session that I have HIV, it happens quite often that he won’t want to go any further with me and says: ‘I’m just going to keep looking.’ Internet chat sites are very anonymous settings. But if you are together in a bar the whole evening, the other person is less likely to give in to his anxieties.


family matters


The game
By order of the HIV Vereniging Nederland (HIV Association), the WEB.foundation developed the game ‘FAMILY.matters’. The game will be distributed through the HIV Treatment Centres in The Netherlands.

The game has been developed in cooperation with the HIV Association, experiential experts and a team of the WEB.foundation, and is meant for families in which one or more family members are HIV+. FAMILY.matters is a memory game and has the aim to support and stimulate the communication.

Along with it, a brochure is added with the title: ‘You’re telling me!’ HIV in your family, who can you share that with? This brochure has been produced in French, Dutch and English. ‘Would you tell your child that he or she is ill? Would you tell your child that you yourself are ill, or would you rather postpone that? And if you do tell your child, would you then also say that this illness is HIV? How to deal with school and how about the neighbours?

This brochure is meant for parents or caretakers of a child with HIV, for parents and caretakers who are HIV+ themselves and for teenagers with HIV or with a HIV+ parent. The aim of the brochure is, to support people if they have to take the difficult decision whether or not to tell others about HIV in their family, and how they can do so if they decide to talk about it.

You can get the brochure by ordering it from the Servicepunt of the Hiv Vereniging (Dutch HIV Association): 020 - 689 25 77, 2 PM – 10 PM Mon, Tues and Thurs. 

Play the game
On the website of WEB.foundation you can download or play the game (see the link at the right side: download the game or play the game).

Your work

Most people with HIV simply continue working as they always have. Since you cannot pass on HIV in your day-to-day contact with people, you do not have to worry about doing or not doing anything in particular. Many people with HIVwerk are in very good health. Generally speaking, people with HIV are ill no more often than people who do not have HIV. It might be that you are so upset after hearing that you have HIV that you cannot work for a short while. It could also be that you will struggle with health problems for a while because you have only discovered that you have HIV when your immune system is already very weak.

Telling about your HIV
You might feel comfortable telling a co-worker with whom you get along very well about your
HIV. If you expect to have to call in sick due to your HIV, it could be a good idea to tell the company doctor about your HIV. He or she is not allowed to tell your employer which condition you have, since the company doctor must keep confidential whatever you tell him or her. Just to be sure, tell your company doctor that you do not want him or her to tell anyone else.

Calling in sick
If you call in sick for work, you do not have to tell your employer what is wrong with you. That means you do not have to tell them about your diagnosis. Your employer is allowed to ask you when you think you will be able to start working again and which kind of work you will be capable of doing when you return, however.

Applying for a job
When you are applying for a job, a prospective employer is not allowed to ask you questions about your health. If they do ask you such questions, you do not have to answer or you can say that the question are irrelevant. When applying for a job, the only thing you need to say is whether you think that you will need to work less in the coming half year as a result of your health or that you may not be able to work as hard. But even then, you do not have to say that it has anything to do with HIV. Also, during a physical examination, the company doctor may not ask you about HIV and he or she is not allowed to test you for HIV. Some professions (such as pilots) might form an exception, since those involve special demands.

In the free guide 'Positief leert' from Hiv Vereniging Nederland you can find all kinds of information about dealing with HIV in education. The guide contains interviews with pupils and parents with HIV. It covers the situation at child day-care centres, primary schools, secondary schools and institutions of higher learning. The guide is in Dutch but contains a summary in English (pdf).

In the free guide 'Positief werkt' from Hiv Vereniging Nederland you can find all kinds of information about working with HIV. It is meant for people who have HIV, but also for employers. It deals with subjects such as working abroad, what to say during job interviews, the role of the company doctor, starting your own business and possibilities for re-integration into the workplace. The guide is in Dutch but contains a summary in English.

You can get a copy of Positief leert and Positief werkt from your HIV nurse or from the Servicepunt of the Hiv Vereniging (020-689-2577- monday, tuesday and thursday from 2 PM till 10 PM).


Hiv Vereniging Nederland

Eerste Helmersstraat 17


020 6 160 160

>> directions



020 689 25 77

For questions about living with HIV. Available monday, tuesday and thursday from 2 PM till 10 PM

>> read more


Support the association and become a member
>> contact Servicepunt