Mark S. King

How Mom Handles HIV in the Family

Filed By Mark S. King | May 08, 2011 10:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: HIV/AIDS, mothers, sons

God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers.

--Jewish Proverb

My mother raised six children, topping off this great achievement with yours truly. She held us all together during the years Dad flew B-52's for months on end, and she performed it all admirably (and stylishly!).

In 1986, she approached the news of my HIV status with her usual pragmatic resolve: she educated herself. I'll never forget her attending a safer sex workshop and then asking me, "Mark, what's rimming?"

Her life has been the kind of roller coaster you might expect for a woman who has raised six kids, seen a few wars, and watched two gay sons negotiate the AIDS epidemic.

There are questions I have always wanted to ask Mom about finding out about my HIV status during the darkest years of the pandemic, and how it felt for her to go through a family AIDS tragedy. In my video interview with her (above) from last year, she never flinches at the questions.

This Mother's Day, I hope you are fortunate to have a supportive mother to call or remember fondly. Thank God, mine is not unique in her capacity to empathize or love unconditionally.

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"Mark, what's rimming?"

THIS... might be my all time favorite Mother Quote. May all the good energy of this earth surround her. :)

Well, I guess I have to be the one to ask ... did you explain to your Mom the ecstasy of eating a nice, lovely asshole?

Your mother is fantastic! Happy Mothers Day to her and all of the wonderful moms in the world.

Having had the privilege of meeting her, I can say that Mark's mom is a sparkler. She was up to the challenge of raising two gay sons. Her calm and sensible approach to love is something all parents should learn. I wish her a happy Mothers' Day.

VaqueroSF | May 8, 2011 1:27 PM

I was really touched by this--not only by your Mother's Day tribute, but by your mother's extraordinary strength and equanimity.

Fine share ...and comments. Sharing myself.

Jim Swimm | May 8, 2011 6:51 PM

This is a wonderful video, Mark! It's great to see I wasn't the only one thinking about their Mom and HIV today...

P.S. I have a bit of a crush on your Mama now.

Jonathan | May 9, 2011 7:38 AM

Your Mom is absolutely AWESOME! You'll never know how much I envy you.

Your mom is a beautiful woman in many ways, Mark.