VIRAL DIVIDE

HIV+ Man’s Photo With His HIV- Family Goes Viral, Combats Stigma

Andrew Pulsipher of Phoenix was born HIV-positive 33 years ago — his parents both had the virus and died of AIDS related illness when Andrew was a child.

And while many would write off his dreams of starting a family, Andrew knew he was still capable of living the life he wanted, on his terms.

Here’s the photo he shared recently that quickly went viral, in which he poses with his HIV-negative family:

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Andrew says he wanted to share his story to help battle the stigma that HIV is guaranteed to ruin your life.

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He wrote on Facebook:

I am sharing this with you because for the first time I can be completely honest with myself and others. This has taken me a very long time to be comfortable with (almost 34 years!). I know HIV has a negative stigma, but that it doesn’t have to and I want to help change that. It is a treatable disease and you can live a normal life with it. I am proof of that. I want to educate people so that we can get past the “HOW you got the disease” to “HOW you are living your life with it”? There are many miracles in the world and I believe my life is one of them. I am not the only one and we all have stories to tell. If you feel drawn to share my story, please do. I would love to be part of the change in how we talk about HIV.

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Here’s some of the gratitude he received:

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Watch more here:


h/t: Buzzfeed