A man who contracted HIV from one-night stand has opened up about his experience. Watch the video here:
Jay Hawkridge lived in a small town, and came out to his mum when he was 15. In his early twenties, he spent his time in stable relationships, but when he was single again, he decided to get on the dating apps and try something more casual.
Two days after he started chatting with one guy, he went to Manchester to meet him and within half an hour he made a move on him.
But over the next few days, Jay's body started to break down and he became seriously ill.
Jay told UNILAD: "It wasn't until the Saturday evening when I started to feel a little bit unwell.
"I think it only took about a day and a half until one of my friends came around and they were like 'you are awful'."
They went to A&E in the early hours of the morning.
Jay explained: "Because HIV antibodies can take up to three months to appear, the blood tests that they did came back negative for HIV, so they were stumped."
Although he was sent home with medication, he carried on getting worse.
One of his friends suggested it could be HIV, but Jay said he didn't take it seriously.
But deciding to get tested again anyway, soon he got a call saying he had tested positive for chlamydia.
He was about to end the call after saying he'd get treated for it, when the test centre worker stopped him, dropping the bomb that he had HIV.
He tried to get in touch with the man he'd slept with, who ignored him for three months, leaving Jay unsure as to whether he had been given it intentionally.
As a result of hiding his diagnosis from his mates and family, his mental health spiralled and he told his mum.
But instead of letting it taking over him, Jay decided to spread awareness about his condition.
Despite initially carrying a lot of anger towards the man he caught HIV from, Jay has decided to move on, accepting he'll never know the truth.
"My journey has had so many wonderful points and there's been so many, positives to come out of it that I'm really really grateful for.
"I don't forgive him at all, and I don't think I ever will. Purely because I have such a high suspicion that he was acting out of negligence."
You can follow Jay on Instagram to find out more about his journey.
Featured Image Credit: Jay Hawkridge
Topics: UK News, Inspirational