Max is HIV positive, not Alex. They started dating together two years ago, after Max knew that he was living with HIV.
Both took part in an important study on the virus transmission that showed that someone with HIV that followed effective treatment could not pass over the virus by sex.
The couple shared their story with BBC Radio 5 in the hope that it will inspire more people to be tested and eliminate some stigmas that still exist.
"I was 24 years old when I discovered that I was HIV positive. FWhich chocolate, pic in the stomach. When they told me, I started crying. I did not know what to do. Should I go back to work or make a break in my life? Do I have to tell someone? How will I find love now?
The nurse in the place where they enabled me enabled me and said: "Do not worry, everything will be fine".
As I tried the test regularly, I found it very early, and that was good news because the treatment before the improvement would start.
HIV medication works by reduce the amount of the virus in the blood at levels that can not be found. This means that the virus can not be transmitted when having sex, even without a condom.
Taking the medication that I need is something quite easy:only I need it a pill and a day during lunch time. Patients with type 1 diabetes need four or five injections.
Being HIV positive has cost me more mentally than physically: The concern I feel when I have to tell other people about my illness.
My nearest family and friends have been diagnosed with my diagnosis. Most responded to them were great, but not all of them supported me.
A friend, some kind of mentor said to me: "Indeed, We will not look for someone with HIV. We will always get the question of whether they take their medicines or not. "
I felt that I was labeled people with HIV as "incredible" and he was "responsible" for avoiding contacting people like me.
This vision became apparent in the 1980s, when HIV was considered personal failure or death sentence. People are still connecting HIV to gravestone images on TV or with Princess Diana breeding people with AIDS in hospital.
Many then refused to touch people with HIV and much more to get close contact. But today, some of us who live with HIV can expect to live as much as any other person.
My mentor's response greatly affected me. I started to have panic attacks. I had never experienced them before, but I can not breathe. I can not even go out.
I met Alex soon after learning he was living with HIV. We were academics and we were interested in sex and sexuality issues, so a bond was born. He already knew that I was HIV positive, so it was not something that I had to talk about.
I'm not sure when we give us the best use of condoms in maintaining relationships I did not see it blurred, but I was worried that it would feel that they did not use condoms to make me feel better.
Last year we took part in the study Partner, which showed that overwhelming the people with HIV being able to have sex without it condom and not pass on virus if they take the appropriate treatment.
I believe that if more people knew this, HIV would be less feared or stigma and no-one would have anything in terms of being tested. "
How treatment works for HIV
- HIV is treated with antiretroviral drugs, which prevents the repetition of the virus.
- Then measure the amount of blood virus to see how well the procedure works.
- It can take up to six months for this viral load to be notifiable.
- People with HIV who have effective HIV treatment can not have been detected by their viral load for six months or more, which can not transmitted the virus by sex.
- The NHS, British public health service, says that the most effective way to protect HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STD) is a condom.
"That was the first impression I had of Max he was very sure himself.
I met at a political conference in the Green Party of the United Kingdom. I was with a group of young people being homosexual – we were likely to be quite threatening as collective – and even came back and said: "Hi."
I discovered that I had positive HIV days after I met her, when she posted her next Facebook status to a photo with her medications.
One of the reasons why I was attracted to him was exactly as open as he was talking about HIV. I have always admired her confidence and refused to introduce to social pressures.
I also liked the fact, even when it was dealing with the impact of its diagnosis, had devoted some time to emotional energy and time to try and help others.
We met a few months after that conference and that's where everything started.
Na I was scared outsidepositivenot at all. In the opposite, I felt sad because I knew, after the diagnosis, that I had suffered some refusal from other people.
In terms of having sex without condoms, I was not worried about HIV contracting because I knew that my girlfriend was taking her medication.
I'm full and full. Some people say that people with the virus can not take their medicines, but that's just a prejudice. If you live with HIV, your health depends on taking that pill Every day. It's not something that you're missing.
I have not told my whole family that Max is HIV-positive, I do not think it's important.
I told my parents before taking them home for lunch, but just because he was taking his pill with lunch and he did not want me to pick up the table.
A shame that has not been disclosed is better than HIV may not be transmitted. Too many people are suffering from the stigma associated with the disease for any reason.
The views of people about HIV are in the past. We need to drive change. "