You are not logged in. Signup to contribute or login! Not recieved your activation email? Click here to send it again.

AIDS Epidemic, The Early Years


Graham describes the period of the early epidemic as a period of maturation, "Incredible stories of friendship, companionship and support. That time made gay relationships much more serious, not just hedonistic, it was also about being responsible and caring, about love, which was always there but is often lost or downgraded in the commercial scene".

"The thing changed everything for people who lived through it, looking after friends who were dying, as that's what it meant then, if you got you were going to die. I had two close friends who were a couple, they lived a very different life to me, especially Gerrard who was a headmaster, he was an Irish Catholic man, he lived with Geoff who was a business man. They went on the London scene a lot and I kind of flirted with that, but was not interested in it. They became ill and Gerrard died although Geoff stayed well enough until the drugs came out. Gerrard was in a hospice up the road in , we looked after him in his last weeks on a rota, we would go and be there so someone was always with him."

"In my road where I live in Selly Park, there used to be quite a gay presence here, the BBC over the road was one reason and there was a gay couple who lived opposite me, they both died of AIDS, a Dutch couple down the road, they both died too. Another man over the road on the other side, he also died. Living through that sort of thing, you thought any gay sex you were going to die. Also there was fear of being tested as there was no treatment then so it being tested meant you could find out you were going to die, and the dying was not easy."

Contributed by: Graham Allen, 58

Click here to read the full interview with this contributor