What's Happening In Your World

Woman Talks About Forgiving the Man Who Gave Her HIV

Judith Shaw’s story is both painful and extraordinary.  She has been living with HIV for 20 years, and tells her story openly, so that others can learn a lesson of education, protection and forgiveness. Back in 1992, Judith’s boyfriend and father of her daughter gave her some news that would change her life.

He said, “I need to talk to you. I just want you to know, I have what Magic Johnson has.”

She responded by saying, “What does Magic Johnson have?”

He replied: ‘He has AIDS.'”

Shaw discusses her story in Helen Whitney’s film “Forgiveness: A Time to Love and A Time to Hate.”

Shaw says that although the pain was agonizing, it was her capacity to forgive that allowed her to keep on living.

“For me, If I hadn’t forgiven I would be out there, somewhere, in that world, abusing myself, I would die,” she said.

Shaw came from a family that was cursed with alcoholism.  She was also molested by an uncle at the age of seven.  Years later, she was infected with HIV by her boyfriend, so her journey has been a difficult one.

“I was so angry, I was so scared,” said Shaw. “I wanted to die, but before I died, I wanted to kill Joe. I went to his door, with the gun behind my back, rang the door bell, and he came to door and, honest to God, I saw my daughter’s face.”

Shaw says that, for years after her diagnosis, she spent her time abusing drugs and harming herself.  But eventually, she learned to let go of her self-hate and focus on forgiving herself and those who’ve harmed her.

“Once I was able to forgive me, that freed me up to forgive everybody else. And it took a long time…to get to where I am. I forgave my uncle, because not to forgive him gives him power — and Joe for infecting me with HIV. I don’t want to live with that because I don’t want to be a bitter old woman. I want to grow old gracefully. And that’s what I intend on doing. And I am loving life. I just got married, I don’t have time to be bitter.”

Shaw is now a receptionist at the Virology Institute in Baltimore.  She says that she is healthy and living with HIV.  Her story is one for everyone to hear on World AIDS Day and to understand the importance of being thoughtful about our choices.

 


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28 comments

  1. Very inspirational testimony. I hate that you had to learn this the hard way, especially since you were trusting the one who loved you.

  2. fuck that if a woman give me some shit like that I would kill her on the spot.

  3. AIDS create other disease it's how AIDS kill…..the t-cell tells the b-cell to make antibodies when something happen to your body, like a cut or colds ect….but when the t-cell is effected it can not tell the t-cell to make antibodies that also send chemical out to other white blood cell to bring the chemical to that area to repair it…so this is why the doctor got to feed it in that certain area to help kill what is going on off…..

  4. That is what Jesus does for us when we sin He forgives, therefore it is as if you have never did it. To do that is the only way we can be free. God bless you for sharing maybe it will help others to forgive.

  5. Some things are better left unspoken.

  6. God bless this sister an I wish the best for her and family but I know w/o a doubt I would kill that fool. Again God bless this women, she is my sero. people please wear condoms althoug this poor women thought her boyfriend was only having sex with her!

  7. Wow what a testimony god bless her and I pray for a cure everyday.

  8. NOW WHAT IF WE WOULD HAVE HAD THAT WEEDED OUT PROCESS…WHERE WE BRAND EVERY…BLACK PERSON WITH AIDS…LIKE RIGHT ON THE FOREHEAD SO WE CAN SEE IT CLEAR…NOT FOR ANY REASONS OF DEGRATION BUT FOR REASON OF SECURITY FOR THE FURTURE…WE LOVE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTER..AT LEAST REAL PEOPLE BLACK MEN AND WOMEN WHO KNOW THE TRUTH ON WHERE WE COME FROM AND WHERE WE NEED TO GO AND HOW TO GET THERE……"MY SISTER DIE OF AIDS IN 2004…SO IT REAL WITH ME I'M NOT JUST SAYING THIS TO SAY IT OR TO LOOK DOWN ON OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS. WE GOT TO BE ABLE TO GET THIS UNDER CONTROL TO WHERE WE CAN SAY OK HE OR SHE IS EFFECTED WITH THIS WHITE MAN AND WHITE WOMEN DISEASE" AND WHY DO I CALL IT A WHITE MAN AND A WHITE WOMEN DISEASE BECAUSE IT COMES FROM "MELANOMA CANCER" ONLY…….BUT IT HAVE CIRCULATED STRONGLY AND WE NOW GOT TO GET IT BACK OUT OF US…..IF YOU BLACKS WOMEN STOP LYING ABOUT SLEEPING WITH WHITE MEN FOR MONEY..BUT NOW THE WHITE SCIENIST IS AND HAVE TAUGHT WHITE BOSSES AND MANAGERS ABOUT ORAL SEX HOW TO EAT PUCCY…..CONTROL, PINCHES, GRINDS, ECT…AND NOW SHE IS OUT CHASING THAT EVEN GOT THIER LITTLE GIRLS OUT THEIR CHASING IT…."TRUE STORY"….IT WAS THE REASON FOR WELFARE REFORM AND BILL CLINTON GET HIS DIC SUCK IN THE WHITE HOUSE…YES THIS WAS SET UP FROM DAY TO PUSH THE BLACK WOMEN IN COROPARTION AND EFFECTED…THE SAME WITH BLACK MEN IN PRISON A LOT OF THEM GOT EFFECTED IN PRISONS BRING IT OUT TO? YALL GOT TO STUDY T-CELLS…B-CELL…CD4… SKIN CANCER AND HOW IT BECOMES AIDS OR MELANOMA CANCER AND YES IT TAKES TIME…BUT IF YOU GET CHEMO…WELL STUDY…..THEY KNOW BLACK DON'T OWN NOTHING BUT CARS…..AND TRYING TO PAY FOR A RENT HOUSE "OK" OR MORTGAGE IF IT MAKES YOU FEEL LIKE MORE THEM WHAT YOU ARE….BUT MANY BODY CAN BUY YOUR MORTGAGE..LIKE AND INVESTMENT GROUP…I DEAR.

    • Mr. Singer; You are a uninformed fool! Your statement has no basis in fact! You can not substantiate anything you've written! It's incoherent!

    • it just because you have a white European study that have shape and mole you to his way of life.. and that's ok… we jus hope we can save our black brothers and sister this is the most important thing of it all….just study these few things and see what you come up with. { if you think i'm uninformed…. do you know what the immune system is and how it work and why it because death with AIDS…I can tell you right here…but I wont just study what the t-cell does for the b-cell…study the cd4 that's on the t-cell….study melanoma cancer or skin cancer and how it evole….you may can see it…

    • Angelene Frederick

      You need to get yourself together Singer, maybe when you speak english, plain english we can understand. If it is the white man and woman disease, why are so many blacks dying from it? Maybe it is time we take responsibility and STOP making SEX everything and start running after more important things in life.

      The white man doesn't put a gun to your head to make you go around slinging your bodies to every tom, dick, harry, or sue, mary, or chenaynay.

  9. If forgiving really works to improve one’s perspective of life and that of others, I would be all for it. But that is generally ‘not’ the case. Although some people follow the ongoing psychological/religiously indoctrinated program of “forgiving”, I would submit that the results of abuses like hers bury themselves deeply into the unconscious mind and usually creates problems in people which are pervasive and negative to the body and the mind. These “forgiven” abuses show themselves through time in strange ways which the victims may, or may not recognize. They more than likely will not pin-point or understand the true source of their future physical and mental problems.

    When some people abuse alcohol, drugs, food, spending/hoarding, or have difficulties relating to others, they may not realize that the source of their misery stems from previous abuses “forgiven” or not! When their bodies break out in hives or they contract some other physical problem, they generally will not relate it to the damage they suffered from earlier abuses by another or others! Even the person who abused them is acting out a psychologically negative problem embedded in themselves from earlier abuses! One of the main ailments we “blacks” in ‘America’ suffer severely from, are unconscious and concious past, and ongoing abuses committed by our ‘white-dominant’ social structure, yet we try to “forgive” and forget even as those abuses continue! We try to set these issues aside and/or leave them “in the past”, but little do we know, that millions of us are suffering in numerous ways because our minds and bodies are taking the abuses and regurgitating them outwards in all sorts of negative ways!
    When we ask “what’s wrong with our men” or women, the answer should be obvious, but we live in total denial and rejection of the obvious, and in America, we live in a semi “American Dream” state of mind!

  10. Judith's a brave woman putting herself out there for all the world to read about.Regardless who the carrier is it's still a heavy load to carry.

  11. I'm happy that she is a forgiving person, did she ever think that she could have given it to him? He admitted to her after the fact but when did he know? Had she ever been tested? Many people are walking around with that package. My son was sentenced to 30 years in prison for the crime of knowing and passing HIV. He was not born with it nor is he a drug user or gay. So people if you are being sexually active RAW then you are making that choice.

  12. There's nothing better in this world, but to walk with GOD, be srtong have faith and beleive in yourself, because GOD believes in you. Forgivness is a beautiful and a powerful word, but when you forgive someone God is right there to forgive you.

  13. Wow…but am happy for you…

    • Nedrea SweetPea Scott

      My mother died Christmas season 2011 and they gave her 6 more months to live and she passed in 5 months. It was not the HIV that took her out but Diabetes destroyed her kidneys. Mother had HIV because the man she was with, did the same thing to her. A black man at that. To make matters worse, he was married and did not tell her until after she got pregnant the first time by him and lost the baby. He got it from a girl who loved next door to me, when I was growing up. Mother survived more than 23 years with it, and doctors were stunned because they told me and my siblings that they have never seen that before. The only reason she is gone is because she had other problems: Hypertension, Anemic, Brain Anhuerism, repeat Strokes, Epilepsy, Migraines, Kidney Disease and Diabetes. She had all of this wrong with her and she never complained not one bit. She suddenly took ill and passed out and then went brain dead. So you can live with HIV for a very long time and I encourage this lady right now in Yeshua's name to continue healing and forgiving. Because it does take a while. After my mom became ill, I thought thee absolute worse of black males, but there were and are other factors influencing this perception as well. Abscent Father, watched a black muslim male who was violent nearly kill my mother, and so many other things. So I have a lot of healing to do as well and as she said, it takes a long time to heal and forgive, but with Yeshua all things are possible. ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE. I have to say that I do not believe I will ever date or marry a black male, because of the mistrust that will always be there. You can forgive but keep a distance. I am really proud of you, so proud of you.

    • Nedra, thanks for sharing your story. May your mother rest in peace.

    • AIDS create other disease it's how AIDS kill…..the t-cell tells the b-cell to make antibodies when something happen to your body, like a cut or colds ect….but when the t-cell is effected it can not tell the t-cell to make antibodies that also send chemical out to other white blood cell to bring the chemical to that area to repair it…so this is why the doctor got to feed it in that certain area to help kill what is going on off…..

    • do you know what a b-cell do.. it gets information from the t-ell and the t-cell tell the b-cell to make antibodies something is wrong over are over are over….but when the t-cell can't talk to the b-cell the b-cell don't know to make antibodies for what ever is got on in your body….so people die from the complication of and infection of some kind…because the b-cell stop making antibodies…ok….and the real people who you black are hide with the white man because you think he know now to play with your clitoris….he know about contraction pinches ..and this what get you to keep running back in love ect…I have studies a lot of this…..high level professional oral sex educator but what I don't know we help each other for the good of our people.. only…stop this go at it alone and jealousy please…

    • Angelene Frederick

      What?

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