You know that normally girls always have a really good guy friend, almost like a brother. Well, so did I. Well for me my best “boy” friend was Jake. We met in the beginning of grade nine. He was one of the first people I met after my “best” friends left me. We had known each other before but never really that close. In grade when, Jake and I started to talk a little more not too much though. He’s the type of guy that when he wants to talk to you he’ll talk but if he’s with his friends he’ll just kind of ignore you. It was better than having no one though.
I’d been made fun of a lot since grade five and even when I moved away from my childhood home and school. I moved in the summer before grade eight because my parents wanted me to be happy and not be made fun of anymore. They just wanted to help me but them even moving me didn’t help me getting made fun of.
In grade ten, I started to become very depressed and even though I had a great boyfriend I always felt very alone. In class I would normally hide in the back and then during the rest of the day I would take shortcuts to class and just do my best to hide from these people but they would always find me. Sometimes this depressed state I was in would prove to be too powerful for me. That’s when I started to cut myself. Jake began to notice that I was depressed and took me aside one day. “Kay, call me later. We need to talk.” Leaving the classroom, I knew that Jake knew something was wrong with me. I dreaded phoning him tonight but I knew if I didn’t he would do something bad, like maybe tell my parents or even tell my school office.
When I got home that night, I called him immediately. His voice seemed a little deepened with some maturity and anger as he said hello. Jake started to conversation by talking about how worried he was about me. I thought that he had seen my cuts but you know I always wear really baggy clothes to hide the scars and the cuts. Just knowing that he was there for me and he wanted to know what was going on, I knew that I had to tell him. That’s when I finally told someone about my “little secret” for the first time.
Jake became really quiet and didn’t say a word for a little while. I knew that it wasn’t a good time for me to talk either, so we just sat there in silence. Finally the next few words out of his mouth were, “I need to talk to you too. I need to tell you something.” That’s when Jake dropped on bomb on my life. “Kay, I have AIDS.”
Personally I knew nothing about AIDS except that it killed people. Jake told me that a girl that we knew had raped him. I know that to some of you it may seem a little strange that a man got raped but it can happen, rather frequently to tell you the truth. Apparently this girl had HIV and didn’t tell anyone. Jake’s story scared me a lot and suddenly told him that I had to go even though I didn’t.
How could my best friend have AIDS? To me it didn’t make any sense. How could a man be raped? Even though I’d been raped before I never thought a man could be. With all of these questions and more in my mind I started to distance myself from Jake, during class, during lunch, and especially out of school. This happened for about a week before he finally confronted me. He told me that all of his friends started to ignore him and almost disown him. I started to think of what a jerk I was being for turning against him when all he needed was a friend. He had always been there for me, almost like a brother and I drop him when he needs me the most. What kind of friend was I really being?
The pain that I was feeling from being leaving me and excluding me was now being given to Jake. I never thought it would happen to him because he was popular but just because of this little thing, everyone just dropped him from their little group like they always did to me.
About the story of Jake, this story sadly enough is true. Jake was my great friend and a great guy but because of what happened to him a lot of his friends left him because of what happened. He said that he’d probably have to leave the school because of everything that was happening to him. Just remember that AIDS isn’t contagious and just because someone has it doesn’t mean that they are worth any less. Jake and I have worked out our problems and now I go with him to help him deal with his treatments. Even though I know there isn’t a cure for AIDS, I’m still there for him every second of the day. Also I am a recovered cutter. After Jake threatened to stop being friends with me, I went and got help with my cutting.