What’s up doc?
I’m a heterosexual male who is about to turn 26 in a few days. I’m an average guy on good days (I don’t pass the Grimes Test with flying colors) who has never been in a relationship. I consider my social skills to be below par than a lot of people, especially when you consider the fact that I haven’t even had a single friend from the opposite sex in my entire life.
Up until this point, this might sound like any other letter that you receive but this is where it gets interesting.
I have had type-1 diabetes for over a decade and a half now. To add to that, just before I turned 20, I was diagnosed with AIDS (not sexually transmitted).
I know that you repeatedly mention that you are not an actual doctor and I acknowledge and completely respect that. Moreover, you have covered some extremely complex issues, including stuff like living with STDs and chronic illnesses in some of your articles. But this letter is about something else. This is about the practicality of pursuing a relationship while living with such issues.
As I mentioned before, I am an average guy living with 2 chronic illnesses (3, if you consider the psychological issues that come with them). Whenever I look online for advice on whether someone with chronic illnesses should pursue love, relationships, a social life and all of that, the standard answer is that we deserve to be as happy as anyone else and therefore, we should go for it. But the fact that you have a tendency to delve deeper into such issues beyond the obvious, here is what I’d like to know from you:
How fair is it for the person living with something like AIDS to pursue a relationship with a person who may not have it? Consider the number of single guys out there who are looking to be in a relationship with any given girl (I know about oneitis but generally speaking). Out of all those guys, there must be some who are at least comparable to what I am and what I can provide in the relationship. But they do not come with the 2 chronic illnesses, one of which can threaten the life and well-being of the partner. So, why should a girl choose me over someone else who does not have my illnesses, considering that I do not bring anything special to the table? Now, add to that the issues like stigma that the disease brings with it, the other person will be made to go through troubles that they will never know when being with a healthy person.
More importantly, how right is it for someone like me, morally speaking, to even try to look for someone to be in a relationship with when I cannot ensure the health and well-being of myself, let alone my partner?
So in a nutshell, is it even practical for me to try to pursue a relationship?
Thank you for all your help,