Bloggers: HIVers and HIV/AIDS Advocates Share Their Thoughts
"I see so many of my trans sisters in the U.S. and around the world being severely impacted by HIV and by ignorance," Dee Borrego writes. That's why she speaks out and shares knowledge from her own experiences as a young transgender woman living with HIV.
Enrique was discharged from the U.S. Army for refusing to hide that he was gay. He also tested HIV positive at that time. Enrique draws strength and inspiration from all his experiences -- from walking his dog to musing about God.
When Maria Mejia was diagnosed with HIV at 18, her mother said: "You will not die from this, but you will tell the family you have another disease." Now, after years of silence, this Miami resident is more than ready to open up to the world about living with HIV.
Frankie Ninja -- San Francisco resident, divorced dad, former pilot and Overall Father of The Legendary House of Ninja for the Western U.S., now happily partnered to a man -- hopes that his words will "inspire some to give back, and others to push back."
Nelson Vergel is a chemical engineer who has become a leading advocate for sports nutrition, supplementation and the promotion of wellness in the HIV-positive community since his positive diagnosis in 1986. He is also the author of Testosterone: A Man's Guide and co-author of the book Built to Survive; the founder of the nonprofit organizations Body Positive Wellness Clinic and Program for Wellness Restoration; the Nutrition and Exercise forum expert at TheBody.com; and a bilingual speaker on lipodystrophy, wasting, exercise, nutrition, testosterone replacement, metabolic disorders, HIV medication side effect management and HIV salvage therapy. Nelson also moderates PozHealth, one of the largest HIV health discussion listservs online.
Guest Blog Entries
Latinas Construyendo Liderazgo: Strengthening Latina Community Awareness of HIV/AIDS
Latina leadership means bringing the Latina community together so they can strengthen the message on HIV prevention, empower themselves with information to deliver to their communities, get involved to help prevent HIV or provide services to those in need.
When I Started HIV Meds: Step by Step on a Difficult Road
I was diagnosed with HIV in July 1992. Before starting HIV treatment, my T cells were 868 and I was in great shape, but I was angry at myself for trusting my husband and not wearing protection. I thought I was going to die, and I looked at my life from a different point of view. I started to hang out and drink. I didn't keep a good health regimen. That was the most ignorant decision I ever made. Due to that choice, my T cells went down to 0. I got tuberculosis, neuropathy, wasting syndrome, and had Pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP) four times.
"I knew I was gay, but I didn't want to be what television told me I had to be: Flamboyant, with arched eyebrows, with ear piercings, who takes drugs and sleeps around," writes Steven Villa. But he admits that in the process of coming out and finally feeling that he was accepted by his community, he embodied the same stereotypes that he initially didn't respect. Read about his journey to find his authentic gay self and stand on his own.
He moved to a friend's house and started to look for work, with no luck at all. He didn't know where to go -- until his friend told him to do anything, including prostitution, to get money. Hunk thought about it more than a thousand times. Then one day he went walking down the street and a car pulled up beside him and offered him a ride. Hunk said no -- but then the person in the car asked if Hunk would let him suck his cock, and told him he could pay for it. Hunk smiled and said, "What about 50 bucks?" The customer actually said "Deal!"