ON THE PERSONAL SIDE
Mark S. King: Examining Death, Including the One I Caused
"My memorial service will be fabulous," blogger Mark S. King gushes. "I first outlined it during the initial, deadly wave of AIDS in the 1980s, and have edited it here and there over the years, updating the songs I would like played or the video footage shown." Mark tackles how he's coming to terms with his inevitable (though far from imminent!) demise with the help of a book: Chris Glaser's The Final Deadline: What Death Has Taught Me About Life.
Rae Lewis-Thornton: "Death Pussy" -- Don't Believe The Hype!
"I've never had anyone call my vagina 'death pussy,' at least not to my face," admits blogger Rae Lewis-Thornton. But when she saw that disparaging reference made about an HIV-positive character in a book, it made her think about the negative effect that society's obsession with vaginas has on women. It also made her wonder how men view her own genitals -- figuratively speaking, that is.
River Huston: Jumping Empty-Handed Into the Void
"I no longer say, 'I lost everything,'" writes River Huston. "Now I say, 'I let it go; I shed one life for another.'" How did River end
up broke, without her husband of 10 years, and living by herself on a tiny, remote island in the Caribbean? As she explains in her latest blog entry, this sudden jolt has been a long time coming.
Shawn (From Orlando, FL) on "CNN Tackles HIV and (GASP!) Just About Succeeds"
"I believe in the theory of one step at a time. Having a gay friendly news anchor on a major news program who is willing to address this issue is certainly a move forward. The issue of the celebrities and the healthy looking HIVers probably has something to do with the fact that people will look and pay attention to things that are attractive as opposed to something that is not good looking or real. ... I doubt that as long as we care about how we look and how we are perceived by others, the sad truth is that we will have to take and make our progress whatever way works best, which will probably be through the glitz and glamour of Public Relations."
Read the rest of Shawn's comment and join the discussion on this article!
HIV NEWS & VIEWS
"I Talk Because": A Better Way to Do HIV/AIDS Awareness Ads
"In my opinion, 'It's Never Just HIV' seems as effective as the phrase, 'Every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten,'" Warren Tong writes. "But all is not lost in the world of HIV/AIDS awareness ads. ... One exemplary project is the social media campaign 'I Talk Because.'"
Repealing U.S. Health Reform: What's in It for Us?
"Because of the generous health care plan that we pay for, Congressional representatives would not be subject to health insurance companies discriminating against them because they have diabetes, hypertension or HIV ... [and] they would not lose access to prescription drug benefits no matter how expensive the medications get," writes Phill Wilson, head of the Black AIDS Institute. "But if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, many of us would lose all of these protections."
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HIV TREATMENT & HEALTH ISSUES
Stroke Numbers Rise Among People With HIV
A new study reveals that, while hospitalizations due to stroke have dropped as a whole in the U.S. over the past decade, they've increased 67 percent among people with HIV. Altogether, research suggests that people with HIV are up to three times more likely to have a stroke than HIV-negative people. Blogger Candace Y.A. Montague explains the findings.
A U.S. Guide to HIV/Hepatitis Treatment Access for Those Without
"As many of us sadly know, going through patient assistance programs sponsored by the drug companies can be a confusing, time-sucking maze," writes the HIV Prevention Justice Alliance. That's why the Fair Pricing Coalition has put together a helpful cheat sheet for people in the U.S. who need help paying for their HIV and hepatitis medications.
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He Has HIV, But I Don't Care
(A recent post from the "My Loved One Has HIV/AIDS" board)
"Last month, I met a guy and immediately fell in love. We dated for two weeks. No sex. Just kissing, hugging and phone calls. He also spent the night at my place a few times, but no sex -- it was too early for me. Within two weeks, he introduced me to his family and friends. After that, he told me he was sorry and that he had to end our relationship because he was afraid of hurting me.
"A friend of mine told me that I shouldn't date him because he's HIV positive. I was surprised to hear this, but it makes sense why he wanted to pull away from the relationship. I love him and don't care if he's positive. I have friends and family who are living with HIV, so I'm educated about the disease. I'm negative myself and he doesn't know that I know his status, but I will love him unconditionally. How do I tell him? I'm convinced if I tell him I don't mind his status, he will change his mind about us."
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HIV TRANSMISSION & EDUCATION
The Rising HIV Rates Among Young Women and Girls of Color: What's Going On? (Part One)
In part one of this exclusive, two-part roundtable discussion, our news editor Kellee Terrell sits down with some of the wisest women in U.S. HIV/AIDS advocacy to explore the pressing issues that are increasing HIV risk among young girls and women of color. We look at what is working, what is going terribly wrong and what is being overlooked in terms of HIV/AIDS prevention, education, testing and outreach.
Injection Drug Use Fuels Black HIV Rates: Why Don't We Talk About It?
Mainstream media has spent very little time reporting on how injection drug use -- the No. 2 cause of HIV transmission among black women -- affects HIV rates in the African-American community. The Black AIDS Institute explores this topic by discussing how misinformation, the federal battle over needle exchange, and stigma around drug use has helped create this dangerous silence.
A Night in D.C.'s Red Light District (Part Two)
In part two of this three-part series, blogger Candace Y.A. Montague takes readers on a journey as she follows HIPS (Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive), an organization that distributes safer sex tools to sex workers in D.C.?s red light district. In this blog, Montague remembers a harrowing run-in between HIPS and local police, and also describes the gratitude that transgender sex workers have for the program.
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