September 12, 2017
We live in a world that seeks to label us and box individuals into various categories in order to better understand the complexity of the human race. However, these labels can often be problematic and confusing: life is much more complex than the black-and-white thinking we tend to use. I have struggled with the concept of labels myself, including their advantages, disadvantages, and purpose in my life; in particular, my sexual orientation. For the past five years, I've been known as the "HIV positive heterosexual male go-to guy," a seemingly non-existent, rare voice within the HIV community. That all changed a couple of weeks ago when I finally came to terms and acceptance with a very personal topic I've grappled with for quite some time, the realization of my bisexual identity.
Sex After Diagnosis: My Journey to Believing That Undetectable HIV Viral Load Means Uninfectious
February 16, 2017
An image of the moment I was diagnosed HIV positive remains vivid in my mind. The feelings and emotions that ran through my body like a lightening bolt that day are not easily forgotten. They will be with me forever, as will my feeling of infectiousness upon hearing the words that have played in my mind like a broken record all these years: "Josh, I am sorry, but you are HIV positive."
A Day in the Life of an Anxious and Depressed HIV Advocate
January 23, 2017
The days pass by and the voices inside my head seem to grow louder and louder. Is my advocacy really making a difference? Am I doing enough? Does anybody really care?
President-Elect Donald J. Trump: An HIV-Positive Born-Again Christian's Perspective
December 16, 2016
It's now well known across the world that the United States recently elected Donald J. Trump to be its 45th president. Emotions are running high, not only within the HIV community, but also within communities across the globe, as we grapple what the future holds for our country. His presidency came as a surprise to many, especially in light of polls that overwhelmingly favored his opponent, democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, as the projected winner.
Si Se Puede: Speaking Up as Allies to Latinx Communities
October 13, 2016
"Si se puede" or "yes, one can," a term coined by Dolores Huerta, could be heard in speeches by Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers in the early 1970s. It's a slogan that not only served to unify Latinx people, namely Mexican Americans, but also raised awareness around the plight of farm workers. It is still used almost 40 years later for various causes. Little did we know that a decade after the saying became popular, the world would face a health epidemic -- HIV/AIDS -- it had never seen before, and Hispanics would become a disproportionately affected group.
My 10-Step to-Do List for Enduring Depression
September 14, 2016
A plan of action to combat depression is necessary. While we may never be cured of this condition, we can take steps to suppress it. Some of these things may make us feel uncomfortable or at times seem down right pointless; however, I promise the more you do to actively combat your depression, the better you are going to feel in the long run.
5 Tips to Bridge the Gap With Your HIV Health Care Team
August 19, 2016
Bridging the gap with your health care team can seem like a daunting task. After all, they are the experts who spent years in school and have all the answers, right? It's natural to sense an us-versus-them mentality; however, this is not how the relationship should function.
Bon Voyage: A Recap of the Poz Cruise and Adventure Bear 2016 Rendezvous
July 14, 2016
The vastness and beauty of nature is something that has mystified mankind from the beginning of time. It's as if by seeing the wonders of the world, we see the beauty inside ourselves. Most recently, I experienced this feeling as the annual Poz Cruise joined forces with the Adventure Bears, a social group of gay and bear-friendly men. Together we explored the last frontier, the great state of Alaska. Although not the typical cruising location that you might have pictured, it was the trip of a lifetime and, for me, a time to rejuvenate.
Why I'm Part of the HIV Undetectable = Uninfectious Campaign (Video)
July 11, 2016
When I was diagnosed with HIV at only 22 years of age, I was at a crossroads in my life. From the very get-go, I engaged in taking a proactive stance against the virus and started on antiretroviral therapy, achieving an undetectable viral load shortly after. As someone who is in a mixed-status relationship where treatment as prevention (TaSP) is our chosen form of protection, I felt it was important to participate in the Undetectable = Uninfectious project (U=U) of the new Prevention Access Campaign.
Suffering in Silence: Why the HIV Community Can No Longer Ignore Mental Health
June 8, 2016
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Joshua, CEO of the California non-profit Pozitive Hope, Inc., was diagnosed with HIV at twenty-two and has been involved in advocacy ever since. Whether it be HIV, mental health, or LGBTQ rights, this self-identifying bisexual activist seeks to make a difference in the lives of each and every person possible. He is fluent in Spanish, a full-time college student currently pursuing his degree in Psychology with the hopes to one day be a Clinical Psychologist or Social Worker, and one day hopes to defy the odds once more by becoming a pilot. Your questions, opinions, letters and suggestions are welcome at pozitivehope1@
Photo credit: Vincent Carrella
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September 12, 2017 - Bisexuality: A Blog Entry by Josh Middleton
February 16, 2017 - Sex After Diagnosis: My Journey to Believing That Undetectable HIV Viral Load Means Uninfectious -- A Blog Entry by Josh Middleton
January 23, 2017 - A Day in the Life of an Anxious and Depressed HIV Advocate: A Blog Entry by Josh Middleton
December 16, 2016 - President-Elect Donald J. Trump: An HIV-Positive Born-Again Christian's Perspective -- A Blog Entry by Josh Middleton
October 13, 2016 - Si Se Puede: Speaking Up as Allies to Latinx Communities -- A Blog Entry by Josh Middleton
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