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CJ

CJ

"I was diagnosed with HIV in 1990 and decided to go into denial. I never expected treatments and simply carried on with life until... the brain swelling.


First it was pins and needles on my tongue. I went to four hospitals and they all said that there was nothing wrong with my tongue, so I went to Gatwick Airport and bought a ticket to Dubai to see a doctor there!


There was not much logic left in me by that time. I'd forgotten I had HIV and just went off without shoes on, and that's when I got arrested - in Gatwick Airport, for not wearing shoes!


After three years in a mental health hospital in Winchester, with them trying to shove antiretrovirals in me unsuccessfully,  I wound up in Mildmay Hospital for two years.


I remember the whole experience being quite exciting as there were lots of things to do compared to the previous mental health hospital. I remember learning to cook and arguing with other patients and there were peaceful times too. I remember "just getting better!"

("I was a naughty patient as I always tried to escape. I didn't like being locked up and my freedom taken from me, and eventually, they kicked me out!")

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