Tell us about yourself…
I grew up in Nairobi on State House Road with my stepparents. Immediately after finishing high school, I was told to vacate the house and start my own life.
How did you get infected with HIV?
A man I was living with infected me. I was introduced to him by my best friend who was dating him. I did not have anywhere to go, so she took me there to work (for him) as a house help.
I was desperate and I needed money. A few months later, he started showing interest in me and I could not say no. Before I knew it, he had broken up with my best friend.
What was your best friend’s reaction?
She told me that I would regret it, but I dismissed it as just jealousy. In retrospect however, I suspect she must have known about his status since their baby died two weeks after birth.
How did you find out your status?
I had applied for a job at a restaurant and they required my health records. I was confident because I thought they were testing for pregnancy or drugs.
Two weeks later, when the tests came back, I was told I was positive. Actually, the doctor just told me that I had Aids and that I only had five years to live. Those days, medication was very expensive.
How did your boyfriend react?