Living with HIV

Riding the great white way

published: November, 21, 2017 Written by // Isaac D. Joseph Categories // Social Media, African, Caribbean and Black, As Prevention , Gay Men, Isaac D. Joseph, Mental Health, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Health, International , Treatment, Living with HIV, Media, Opinion Pieces

Isaac D. Joseph on how he got free of cocaine and on what he thinks makes for a successful intervention.

Riding the great white way

“Did you try to live on your own, when you burned down the house and home, did you stand too close to the fire like a liar looking for forgiveness from a stone?” – Green Day, 21 Guns For years the LGBT community has been plagued with substance abuse issues. Studies have shown that, when compared with the general population, gay and bisexual men, lesbian, and transgender individuals are more likely to use alcohol and drugs at much higher rates than the general population. For many indiv

Gay men’s stories of monogamy and non-monogamy: change, flexibility and tensions

published: November, 20, 2017 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Social Media, Gay Men, Mental Health, Research, Sexual Health, Health, Revolving Door, International , Lifestyle, Guest Authors, Living with HIV, Media

From AIDSmap, Roger Pebody reports on an Australian qualitative study exploring relationship dynamics among gay men.

Gay men’s stories of monogamy and non-monogamy: change, flexibility and tensions

Although some gay men idealise monogamy, particularly in the early stages of a relationship, couples often become non-monogamous over time, Australian researchers report in an article published online ahead of print in Culture, Health and Sexuality. Men often saw non-monogamy as realistic in gay relationships, due to social and cultural norms in gay communities. But shifting the ground rules of relationships could be challenging for some couples, especially when the partners had different

Stigma Mentality

published: November, 17, 2017 Written by // Kimutai Kemboi, Categories // African, Caribbean and Black, Activism, Social Media, Kimutai Kemboi, International , Living with HIV, Media, Opinion Pieces

As "The boldest Kenyan who lives with HIV," Kimutai sometimes encounters stigma because of his high media profile.

Stigma Mentality

As per the article that was published yesterday on the Saturday Daily, I came to realise that stigma is at its peak. The kind of reaction I saw on all the platforms showed the kind of perception that our society has towards HIV and people living with HIV. People have a stigma mentality such that they rush to make utterances or moves without a second thought. Such ill minds are laying ground for stigma to thrive and make our people go through a lot of suffering. We should avoid these at all co

Where demons hide

published: November, 09, 2017 Written by // Isaac D. Joseph Categories // African, Caribbean and Black, Social Media, Gay Men, Youth, Isaac D. Joseph, Mental Health, Health, Living with HIV, Media

Isaac D. Joseph: "As of today, I have been sober for 30 days after a relapse period of four months."

Where demons hide

When the days are cold, and the cards all fold, and the saints we see are all made of gold…when you feel my heat look into my eyes it’s where my demons hide…don’t get too close, it’s dark inside, it’s where my demons hide – Imagine Dragons, "Demons" Remember when you were a child and you and your friends would play hide and seek. There was always one person that you knew would be found first, the few that would always make it to the base, and one that you would never find. The h

Barriers to healthcare impenetrable for LGBT+ in Zambia

published: November, 09, 2017 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Social Media, African, Caribbean and Black, As Prevention , Gay Men, General Health, Current Affairs, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Revolving Door, International , Treatment, Guest Authors, Living with HIV, Media

From a railway clinic, educating the community on LGBT+ health issues is as challenging as ever. From Key Correspondents, this report.

Barriers to healthcare impenetrable for LGBT+ in Zambia

Zambia is on the path to achieving control of the HIV epidemic thanks to focused political commitment implemented over a decade. The key factors to epidemic control are numerous, including universal testing of high-risk groups, timely referral, access to quality prevention and treatment services, and linkage to and long-term retention in care. Achieving final epidemic control requires a coordinated and targeted approach that integrates the expected adoption of new World Health Organisation (WH

Why your best partner on your HIV health care team is your HIV specialty pharmacist

published: November, 08, 2017 Written by // T.J. Miller Categories // Social Media, T.J. Miller, Health, International , Living with HIV, Media

T.J. Miller reports on two studies that explore the patient-pharmacist relationship.

Why your best partner on your HIV health care team is your HIV specialty pharmacist

Many of us who are HIV-positive focus on finding the perfect doctor; someone that we feel comfortable with, form a good working relationship with and develop a sense of trust with over time. Butr how many patients have taken the time to develop that same relationship with their HIV pharmacist? A new study out of Michigan along with several other studies have found that the pharmacist-patient relationship might just be the most important relationship within the healthcare chain, even more impo

The S Word

published: November, 07, 2017 Written by // Alex Sparrowhawk Categories // Social Media, Gay Men, Mental Health, International , Living with HIV, Media, Opinion Pieces, Alex Sparrowhawk

Alex Sparrowhawk on HIV stigma "We want society to treat us with the same respect given to people without the virus. This means we need to live as we wish to be seen. Unashamed and unapologetic."

The S Word

Today I mark a day in my life that I will remember forever, it is eight years since I received my HIV diagnosis. I am a very different person to the 24 year old who sat in the clinic side room on that sunny November morning wondering how badly I had messed up my life. Over eight years I have experienced the full spectrum of human emotions, especially in the times I found myself alone in silence. I am lucky that I have received support and found confidence to channel my anger and frustration,

Investigating where patients go when they leave HIV care

published: November, 06, 2017 Written by // CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource Categories // Social Media, CATIE, As Prevention , General Health, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Research, Sexual Health, International , Treatment, Living with HIV, Media

From CATIE, Sean R. Hosein reports on research that begins to paint a picture of what happens when people living with HIV are "lost to follow-up."

Investigating where patients go when they leave HIV care

- Previous research has found HIV-positive Canadians stop attending follow-up HIV appointments at rates between 11% and 24%. - Alberta researchers find that many patients “lost to follow-up” are seeking healthcare outside HIV services, often in hospital emergency rooms. - This research has implications for programs that seek to re-engage patients in HIV care. Potent combination anti-HIV therapy (ART) can reduce levels of HIV in the blood (viral load) to very low levels that cannot be de

Ed Wolf's journal of the Trump years for November: expect the unexpected

published: November, 01, 2017 Written by // Ed Wolf Categories // Social Media, Activism, Aging, Gay Men, Current Affairs, Ed Wolf, Spirituality, International , Living with HIV, Media, Opinion Pieces

HIV activist Ed Wolf copes with Trumpism as the malaise continues.

Ed Wolf's journal of the Trump years for November: expect the unexpected

 Day 94.  Expect the Unexpected As some of you know, I had the great honor to be included in David Weissman’s award-winning documentary, “We Were Here,” and occasionally receive messages from people who’ve seen it. The following arrived a few days ago, a perfect reminder to all of us, in these polarized times, to continue to do our work, stay committed to our beliefs, and tell our stories. Hearts and minds can and do change. “Hi Ed. I just watched the movie in which you are feat

People with HIV still expect a lower quality of life than their negative peers, European survey finds

published: October, 31, 2017 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // International AIDS Conference , Social Media, As Prevention , Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Mental Health, Health, Revolving Door, International , Treatment, Guest Authors, Living with HIV, Media

Nearly 40% with an undetectable viral load still consider themselves infectious. Gus Cairns reports on a European study commissioned by Gilead Sciences.

People with HIV still expect a lower quality of life than their negative peers, European survey finds

A study commissioned by the drug company Gilead Sciences and conducted in five European countries has found that, compared with their HIV-negative peers, people with HIV still expect to die sooner and think they are less likely to achieve a long-term relationship. The results were announced yesterday during the 16th European AIDS Conference (EACS 2017) in Milan, Italy. The survey found that 54% of HIV-positive people considered HIV to be a barrier to sex with others, and of them 87% (47% o

To hell with the money!!

published: October, 30, 2017 Written by // Kimutai Kemboi, Categories // Activism, Social Media, African, Caribbean and Black, As Prevention , Kimutai Kemboi, General Health, Mental Health, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Features and Interviews, Women, Health, Sexual Health, International , Treatment, Living with HIV, Media

Kenyan HIV activist Kimutai Kemboi interviews "Eve", a former Nairobi sex worker.

To hell with the money!!

"Over the years, my needs came before my health. Risk of getting sexually related infections never came to my mind. I could sleep with whoever offered to pay my rent, buy food, meet other bills and ensure my beauty was maintained." Eve said. "I could sleep with any man irrespective of his physical outfit or age, what mattered to me was how much he could cover. The amount he could give decided how much his demands were honoured. Using protection was not my option but his wish; to be sincere. I

After I was diagnosed with HIV I started taking risks

published: October, 30, 2017 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Social Media, Dating, As Prevention , Gay Men, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Newly Diagnosed, Mental Health, Health, Revolving Door, Treatment, Guest Authors, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Media, Sex and Sexuality

From FS Magazine, Ruaidhri O'Baoill tells of "a time when I should have protected myself more than ever but instead put myself through continuous sexual risk" and how he found his way forward.

After I was diagnosed with HIV I started taking risks

When I was diagnosed as HIV-positive I turned to sex as a way to cope with how I was feeling about myself. I lost all confidence and self-condemned myself to the ‘unwanted’ pile. I relied on the quick fix that sex brought to make myself feel better again.  It was the connection, contact and ultimately acceptance, along with being desired, that I craved which sex provided me with – no matter the circumstance.  I didn’t set out to intentionally put myself at risk again after being d

Free workshops at HALCO in November and December 2017

published: October, 27, 2017 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Community Events, Social Media, Events, Revolving Door, Legal, Guest Authors, Living with HIV

Everyone is welcome to attend any of these general interest workshops but space is limited so registration is required.

Free workshops at HALCO in November and December 2017

Our free workshops are held in person at the HALCO office/Specialty Legal Clinic Co-op, 55 University Avenue, 15th Floor Room C2, Toronto (just south of King Street West and the fully accessible St. Andrew subway station).  The workshops in this series are: - Refugees and Permanent Residents: How Can You Lose Your Status in Canada?  How Can You Apply for Canadian Citizenship? workshop on Wednesday November 8, 2017, 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.  Presenter:  Meagan Johnston, HALCO Staff Lawyer. -

My new friend

published: October, 26, 2017 Written by // Dennis Battler Categories // Social Media, Aging, Gay Men, Mental Health, Health, Spirituality, Dennis Battler, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces

Dennis Battler honours Shanti's life and faces a new diagnosis.

My new friend

“And now its Wed. Tue was another day from the Hellien Gods. Centered around my new bodily curiousity the nature of which is too delicate for my demure conversational boundaries.” … as written to an older female friend earlier today. Thoughts change quickly. Well, fuck demure. As I wrote to another friend, David: "Re: sex - I doubt it will happen again in my lifetime. When I think of it, sex fucked up my life. As you said, “So much disease with sex.” And do we really pay attention?

Living with HIV in the 21st century

published: October, 25, 2017 Written by // Isaac D. Joseph Categories // Social Media, African, Caribbean and Black, As Prevention , Gay Men, Youth, Isaac D. Joseph, Treatment Guidelines -including when to start, Sexual Health, International , Treatment, Living with HIV, Media, Opinion Pieces

Isaac D. Joseph debuts on PositiveLite.com as a regular contributor with his assessment of what it means to live with HIV today.

Living with HIV in the 21st century

In 1985, The Normal Heart, a play about gay men in New York fighting back against government indifference to the AIDS epidemic was performed. It depicts the rise of the AIDS crisis seen through the eye of Ned Weeks, the founder of a prominent HIV advocacy group. In the play Weeks nurses his lover, who is dying from an unnamed disease. His doctors are puzzled and frustrated by having no resources to research it. Weeks tirelessly fights for his lover and so many others, like him dying from AIDS,

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