Local women are finding it difficult to navigate a country that has a huge problem with HIV and AIDS.
One of the women I spoke to, who wished to remain anonymous, told me that she had a boyfriend who contracted HIV from her boyfriend in the past few years.
She was not aware of the extent of his condition.
She said: “It’s very hard to deal with.
There’s a lot of stigma surrounding HIV, and you need to be aware that the stigma can be even higher.
It’s very dangerous.”
It’s also not always easy to find help.
One local woman who wished not to be named told me: “There’s not enough support.
It was difficult to find people that could help me because I was afraid to say anything because I didn’t want to get hurt.
I didn`t want to be ashamed of my sexuality.”
The woman is a survivor of the HIV pandemic, which started in the late 1990s.
In 2003, she was married and had a child, but her partner was living in prison, and she was struggling to find a job.
It took her nearly two years to get her health insurance to pay for the first month of her husband`s medication.
“We were having problems paying rent and paying for groceries.
I had to pay the bills myself.
I would stay at home with my husband and I would work two jobs to pay our bills,” she told me.
After a while, she told her partner that he had HIV and was on a waiting list.
“He started taking medication,” she said.
“I was scared to tell my partner but I told him that I couldn’t wait any longer and he was fine.
I just wanted to be safe and to not tell him anything because he would think I was hiding something.”
The stigma of HIV and the stigma around being HIV-positive has made it very difficult for the woman to find any sort of support.
The stigma around the condition is especially difficult for those who have HIV.
“The stigma of being HIV is that if you have HIV, you have to be on medication for life.
If you don’t have HIV it’s a death sentence.
You don’t get to go to work.
You are not able to buy a house.
You can`t access healthcare.
You have no protection.
If I had been HIV-negative, I wouldn`t have to worry about this,” she added.
The situation for other women is also different.
“It`s difficult for women because we have no resources to talk about our HIV status.
There are so many misconceptions about HIV.
You`re not supposed to be HIV- positive and you don`t get AIDS,” the local woman told me, adding that the country needs to help those who are HIV- negative.
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