ON THE PERSONAL SIDE
This Positive Life: An Interview With Shana Cozad
In 1993, as a 21-year-old new mom, Shana Cozad could have cared less about HIV. Then she was diagnosed. In this two-part podcast interview, Shana talks about coming to terms with her diagnosis; being rejected from her adoptive family once she disclosed her HIV status; her search for her Native American birth family; and the joys of being a wife and mother of three.
Brandon Lacy Campos: Fraud, Forgiveness, and F***ery
Though he's been living with HIV for years, Brandon Lacy Campos still struggles to be as open about his HIV status as he is about other aspects of his life, including his recovery from crystal meth addiction. "I have found it hard to forgive myself and to own my humanness that could lead to a relapse," he writes in his latest blog entry. "To receive recognition and praise while repeating old patterns creates an internal conflict that is sometimes paralyzing."
Laurie: Job Discrimination, Sex and Dating in HIV's Early Years (Video)
"I was let go because of my HIV status," remembers Laurie, who was diagnosed in the early years of the HIV epidemic and filed one of the first HIV discrimination cases in the U.S. "I was told I was a modern-day problem in an old-fashioned business." In this video from the Positive Project, she opens up about her experiences with stigma, sex and romance since her diagnosis.
John R. (From San Francisco, Calif.) on "Taxation of Disability Benefits"
"Disability benefits recipients who are in registered same-sex domestic partnerships or marriages in community property states may find themselves owing taxes on benefits this year that were previously untaxed. The IRS changed its rules this year to require such persons to list half of each partner's income on their tax return. ... The new IRS rule probably helps more same-sex couples than it hurts, but couples in which one partner has only disability income are likely to pay more in taxes this year and in the future. If you're in this situation, you may want to consult a tax professional."
Read the rest of John R.'s comment and join the discussion on this article!
HIV NEWS & VIEWS
Remembering Chloe Dzubilo, Trans Rebel With a Cause
Earlier this month, the HIV community said goodbye to long-time HIV/AIDS and transgender activist Chloe Dzubilo. Known as a fierce activist, she was a leader in advocacy efforts for transgender sex workers and HIV-affected children, and frequently hit the pavement to do outreach in bars, nightclubs and strolls in the New York City area. Housing Works pays tribute to Dzubilo in this article and associated video.
Candace Y.A. Montague: AIDS Olympics? Really? An Interview With Its Creator
Earlier this month, the first-ever AIDS Olympics was held in Washington, D.C. Before the festivities began, blogger Candace Y.A. Montague talked with its creator, Devin T. Robinson X, about the story behind the event. "This idea was born when I noticed how common AIDS Walks, Runs and Balls became, yet the potency of them continued to decline," Robinson X explains.
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Do I Join a Support Group or Not?
(A recent post from the "Gay Men" board)
"I was diagnosed last summer, and so far it has been tough. I have been keeping busy with my job and its demands as well as with my exercise routine, but lately I have been thinking too much about living with HIV, being positive. Also, I want to date again, but, as many of us who are positive, I am conflicted with ... when and how to disclose my status. I live in a very small town in the Midwest (relocated for work) and have been dwelling on ... whether or not I should join a support group sponsored by the only HIV organization in here. Any suggestions or ideas?"
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HIV TREATMENT & HEALTH ISSUES
FDA Announces Approval of Once-Daily Viramune
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave its blessing this week to a 400-mg Viramune (nevirapine) tablet intended for once-daily dosing. The new dose comes with the old dose's caution for adult women not to take Viramune if they have high CD4 counts, as well as instructions to take the twice-daily form of Viramune for two weeks before starting the once-daily tablet.
Lower Limb Fat, Higher Belly Fat Associated With Health Risk in People With HIV (on TheBodyPRO.com)
When it comes to people with HIV, could body mass index (BMI) measurements not be all they're cracked up to be? Rebecca Scherzer, Ph.D., discusses the findings of a study she presented at CROI 2011 that appear to call into question the widespread use of BMI to assess body fat changes in HIVers -- and the level of health risk associated with those changes.
Much HAART-Related Bone Loss Occurs Early in Therapy, Related to Immune Recovery, Study Finds (on TheBodyPRO.com)
Bone loss in HIV-positive people who take HIV medications appears to occur primarily during the early phase of treatment, and may be tied to the degree of immune system recovery that HAART triggers, according to research presented at CROI 2011 by Ighovwerha Ofotokun, M.D.
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Remember last year's Poetry Month at TheBody.com? Well, it's that time again! From now through the end of April, we'll be accepting and posting submissions of poetry about living with, or being affected by, HIV/AIDS. Anything you write is fair game. Pieces can be literal or abstract, serious or funny, short or long (but hopefully not too long), whatever you want. Select poems will be highlighted on our site throughout the month of April!
Please e-mail your poems to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "Poetry: [Title of Your Piece]." Be sure to specify what name or alias you'd like to use, as well as any details about yourself that you feel comfortable letting readers know -- your age, the city you live in, your gender, etc. Please note that if we post something you send us, it can be Googled, so be sure to think through what kind of information you want to provide.
If you'd rather send us a poem without having to use e-mail, use our feedback page. You can leave out any contact information, but please write "POETRY" at the top of the form so we can spot it easily.
HIV TRANSMISSION & EDUCATION
Addressing Historical Trauma: The Struggle of Native-American Women Against HIV/AIDS
"Many Native women have a lower status economically, educationally and socially," writes the U.S. National Native American AIDS Prevention Center in this overview. "This degradation impacts every facet of their lives, particularly their health. The shift has put Native women at greater risk for HIV infection."
Christopher Ervin: Why Supporting Reproductive Health Is a Form of HIV Prevention
How does the threatened funding cut to Planned Parenthood impact the U.S.'s ability to prevent the spread of HIV? Christopher Ervin of Aniz, Inc., explains: "It is under the auspices of abortion services that basic gynecological exams, pregnancy prevention and STI and HIV education and testing are often provided [to low-income women]."
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