Samantha Jones: Everything Changed

Samantha was born in 1991 in Somalia. She came to the UK to live with her aunt at age nine. She attended mainstream primary and secondary schools and then moved to Scotland to live with another aunt and study at college. Samantha is planning to continue to university.

Here Samantha describes how she felt when she discovered she was HIV positive.


That kind of put a setback on me and my self esteem and everything ‘cause it kind of felt like – before I was kind of invisible, like I was just living through life, like skidding through life. And that kind of like made me more scared, kind of, and it isolated me from people ‘cause I didn’t want to get too close ‘cause I’m like, I’m going to die next month, I’m going to die next week kind of thing. The next week was, like, a holiday, so I just stayed at home and after that I went back to school. Everything changed.
I kind of – I don’t know, I felt like I wasn’t there. I was at school but my mind wasn’t there and I felt, like, I can’t tell my teachers ‘cause I’m scared, they might think, like, or I’m doing something. And that time as well, we were getting sent off to do work experience with old – elderly adults or, like, and I thought I can’t really go, I can’t – ‘cause you have to tell them if you have a certain illness and, like, it kind of put me back.
I got very close to one of my teachers and I wanted to tell her but I didn’t. I just felt like I should protect myself ‘cause I didn’t know how she’s going to react. And then a lot of people have different, like, ways of reacting and I didn’t want something – I don’t want to basically, like, our relationship to be different from when she finds out.

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