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Mondo
Regular

Reged: 04/26/09
Posts: 48
Loc: Australia
Baby-boomers living with HIV
      #245693 - 05/07/09 10:15 PM

Baby-boomers living with HIV

We lived through the fifties and sixties, with reminders from our parents to appreciate the things that they never had in the depression or during the war years. We survived the threat of nuclear war, free love, some yummy drugs and protest songs. Or is that just what history has recorded for future generations.

As we enter the evening of our lives we face a different set of challenges than the average people our age.

The HIV antiviral drugs are great, there is no argument there. It’s a fear of the unknown that faces us as we age into our 50’s, 60 and beyond. Although My Doctor keeps telling me that I’ll probably make it to 75 years old. I must be going to die on or after my 75th birthday I guess:).

There is no precedent for aging with HIV and the drugs we take each day. Nobody has the experience to pass down the line to this generation.

I would be interested to hear from forum members that maybe have a common interest dealing with this issue.


cheers
Mondo

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DJones
All Star

Reged: 04/02/09
Posts: 84
Loc: Milwaukee Wisconsin
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245694 - 05/07/09 10:37 PM

Thank you.

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http://daveslifelivingwithhiv.blogspot.com/

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ScotCharles
Legend

Reged: 05/06/05
Posts: 924
Loc: Los Angeles
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245721 - 05/11/09 10:21 AM

I am 54 and have been diagnosed as HIV+ since September 1984 and have been on meds since March 1994. I was diagnosed with AIDS in 2003 when I contracted PCP. With 25 years experience with HIV and 15 years experience with meds, I look to my older years with a mixture of sadness and trepidation.

With one exception, an old boyfriend, and my companion of 28 years, I have lost all my male homosexual friends from my younger days. I have outlived the members of two HIV/AIDS support groups over the years. This experience of unending loss of my gay male friends has made it difficult for me to make new gay male friends. My companion and I have friends all over the world these days with whom we keep in contact. However, I was moved five years ago by my former employer to Los Angeles, a city in which I knew no one and where it is difficult to meet new people because of the physical size of Los Angeles. I am working with a psychologist and a psychiatrist to overcome my fear of new commitments; and, I have joined several groups to meet new people.

Complications from the HIV meds have left me with nerve damage, liver disease and pancreatic enzyme disorders. I have watched as friends sickened and died with med complications and I have also watched miraculous recoveries as friends walked away from hospice.

Over time, HIV has damaged my brain leaving me with mood disorders and cognitive dysfunctions, so severe that I had to retire on disability last year. Not to spread fear, but now that I am aware of what HIV does to the brain, I see the effects of HIV on the mood and cognition of most people with long term HIV infection.

My companion and I are worried about living alone as we grow older and may in the next year or two, enter a Continous Care Retirement Center somewhere in California, preferably near San Francisco, where we have friends from the days we lived in The City.

Growing old with HIV/AIDS isn't for sissies.

Pax Vobiscum,

ScotCharles

--------------------
Life is a river.
Carpe diem.

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Margaret
Regular

Reged: 03/15/07
Posts: 38
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245758 - 05/14/09 02:12 AM

I was born in 52 in the Uk so Im a baby boomer
Its not just HIV though is it its life and the time we have
So less in front than behind us and that goes for every single person of our generations (1940/1966 Baby boomers?
)Long baby boom hey ! Cancer no chance before drugs
Transplants none till 1968 and hardly any till late 70s
Theres been so many advances and in the time they were done knowone knew what the longterm outcome was.
You takes your chances in life thank God or whom ever for the gift of the drugs that help you and mine to live as for how long? Who knows thats part of life none of us know when.
So dont worry bloody enjoy the life you have be happy for the drugs be happy for your friends job the sun moon stars.
Just live cos you owe it not just to you but the people who love you have a great summer dont worry be happy !!!!
Margaret


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Margaret
Regular

Reged: 03/15/07
Posts: 38
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245760 - 05/14/09 02:28 AM

I am so sorry you have so much sickness its not fair
Think though you are my age and have lived loved and had a life. I dont know if you have heard of Jade Goody?
27 just left 2 small children cervical cancer dead in months.
There were no drugs for her she will nevr see her kids grow
Compared to her we have lived bet you had a ball when young and loved every min of your life. I dont know what its like to loose so many pals but I too as have so many people lost loved ones seen friends male and female die cancer heart attacks road crashes strokes. Its not just HIV/AIDS
Its LIFE we have NO CONTROL over so much of it but we have to try. Moving and lonlieness again its not HIV/AIDS
That wont help I grant you but its the same for all of us
If you could find more pals that would help cant you join your local PHFLAG you can be HIV neg or POS to join.
Unless your really sick as in cant get up dont write off your life As someones whos beloved has HIV I bless every day
Im so lucky to have him in my life to see him to touch him
Thats life its love watching sill dvds having a glass or 5 of wine I loved the life I had young BUT as a women I look in the mirror and think whos that person but I wouldnt swap the life I have now at my age for the life of a 20 something today
So as this Englishwomen says Chin up lifes good and its better than the alternative which will come to us all.
Margaret

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Aaron75
Newbie

Reged: 05/14/09
Posts: 1
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245762 - 05/14/09 02:53 AM

This will be brief because I arose too early not sleeping well and then discovered this thread. But first I had to figure out how to do a post which meant registering and all that. So I have only a few drops of gas in my engine.
So here goes. I am 75 --- so yes you can reach that age. To be fair, I have been positive for only 8 years, at a time when the cocktails were on their way to be well developed. Happily, I quickly became undetectible and have remained so. Likewise my t-cell count is in the 500-700 range.
I have obseesivley taken my meds on time with the exception of about twice in all these 8 years. I feel wonderful and do yoga and a little weights on occasion. I live in Tel Aviv right now and in my 3rd month here. I must be crazy, but I think I can learn a very difficult language at age 75. It's a challenge and maybe it's that drive to learn that helps my outlook and allows me to set aside my medical status most of the time. I have KS, but it's mostly in remission and has been mostly on one ankle. The doctors keep telling me that I wont' die from KS. Viramune has caused some slightly high liver enzyme readings, but nothing to worry about. Meds here in Israel are practically free as is all the medical care. It beats even Kaiser which I have in Santa Monica and the doctors speak English fluently.
I'd like to hear about other's dealing with "old age." There, I said the words. Funny, I don't feel like an old person. I have an Israeli boyfriend and I am making friends here. How I spend my remaining years is probably my biggest ongoing issue.

Edited by Aaron75 (05/14/09 02:58 AM)

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Mondo
Regular

Reged: 04/26/09
Posts: 48
Loc: Australia
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245766 - 05/14/09 06:07 PM

Thank you Margaret for your reply to my post.

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Mondo
Regular

Reged: 04/26/09
Posts: 48
Loc: Australia
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245767 - 05/14/09 06:09 PM

Thank you for tyaking the time to reply to my post.

Mondo

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MstrAlex1
Newbie

Reged: 02/05/09
Posts: 3
Loc: Michigan, USA
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245807 - 05/16/09 11:00 PM

Hi, Mondo.


I'll be 65 in a month. I've been poz since 2003 - tested poz in April, think the seroconversion was in January.


For me the 3 major challenges of being poz have been the fatigue, which forced me to retire in 2004, the "huge" abdominal fat gain, which happened in the first 3 to 4 months and I have not been able to get to budge since, and peripheral neurapathy, which has been getting steadily worse in the past year.


I started meds in Oct. 2003. I never adjusted to the AZT component of my 1st regimen, so at about 6 months I was switched from Combivir to Truvada. My life has been a lot better since then - I handle the meds well, I'm non-detectable, my CD4 is about 700 and I've never had an opportunistic infection.


I didn't come out as gay until I was 49 although I'd started having sex with guys when I was 9. Coming out meant ending 20 years of a really bad marriage. Hiding and getting married were things a lot of us did back in the dark ages, pushed by our families, our social situation and our religious communities.


One of my fears that held me back from coming out sooner was the image of the lonely old queen. But I quickly discovered that you can be as lonely or as involved as you care to be. I am so much happier since I came out, in spite of dealing with HIV and the death of a partner. My relationship with my 2 children is so much better than it had been before the divorce (especially better since my ex died several years ago).


I am a gay leatherman. I have been very involved in the Master/slave lifestyle and for many years headed a national organization for that lifestyle. I started that path among gay men but have come to have many heterosexuals friends in the lifestyle as well. These are friends located all over the country, many of whom are now like brothers and sisters to me.


Personally I have had two live-in slaveboys for most of the time since 1996. My first slaveboy died of AIDS related PCP in 2001. It was a huge blow to me and the other boy, but we pulled together and moved on. I too quickly added another boy to the household but he didn't work out well. After 3 years he was asked to leave. After that we (that mostly means me) cooled our jets for a while and then I added another boy who has worked very well.


I didn't set out to do it, but I have ended up with slaveboys who are much younger than me. The one who died after 5 years with me was 21 years younger; the surviving boy, who has now been with me for 12 years, is 19 years younger; and my "new" boy, who has been with me 4 years, is 35 years younger. Being surrounded daily with younger men has encouraged me to keep young in mind and spirit even if my body doesn't always want to cooperate. Among the three of us we are a mixture of HIV statuses and we work hard at keeping it that way.


Like many who are poz in our era, I fully expect that it will not be HIV/AIDS or one of its opportunistic diseases that will kill me. I know that I will not live forever, but I am very confident that to the end I will not be alone. I know that my boys will care for me, but I have long term care insurance in case my care becomes more than they can handle. I have tried to structure my estate to provide for my boys, as well as my children, when it is my time to be called so I will have no regrets of not having cared for them or providing them a home even at the end of my life.


My life is rich and full and I am enjoying myself. HIV causes some inconvenience but it is not who I am and it is not the center of my life.



--------------------
Life is a sexually transmitted disease and it is invariably fatal. No one gets out of this alive!


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Mondo
Regular

Reged: 04/26/09
Posts: 48
Loc: Australia
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245829 - 05/18/09 11:54 PM

Thanks for taking the time to respond to my post.

Good health and best wishes to you
Mondo

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cunta_stalwart
Grand Master

Reged: 06/27/08
Posts: 175
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #245907 - 05/31/09 09:34 AM

boys and slaves ?

all sounds a bit sick if you don't mind me saying so

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How Many Roads Must A Man Walk Down Before He Admits Hes lost

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allangering
Regular

Reged: 07/04/09
Posts: 46
Re: Baby-boomers living with HIV new
      #246784 - 07/30/09 05:32 AM

Two separate surveys, when compared together, indicate that single Baby Boomers are putting themselves at risk for acquiring AIDS/HIV. There are a lot of single Baby Boomers out there dating around; More Baby Boomers than ever have the AIDS virus.
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