Living with HIV

Run or Hide: Holiday Survival Skills

published: November, 22, 2011 Categories // Living with HIV

Don Short: the holiday season kicks us into high gear on the social calendar. In talking with co-workers, clients, family and acquaintances, seems like everyone is adopting their own coping strategy to get thru this time of year.

You either manage the activity or disappear from the madness. In listening, I think both approaches are valid. Why do we hit the acceleration pedal and not stop the brakes when needed? Should we throw ourselves into the “end-of-year” spin trying to fit it all in? Or can we hide from social engagement and avoid feeling the spirit of the holidays? It comes down a long list: associated memories, financial restraint, stressful relationships, religious affiliation, or even self-care.  Peo

On getting older

published: November, 22, 2011 Written by // Wayne Bristow - Positive Life Categories // Aging, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Wayne Bristow

Wayne Bristow and the journey to becoming a happy grumpy old man.

On getting older

One of the things that I’ve dreaded having to deal with is aging,  But I am going to get older and I will have to find a way to live with it.  Aging myself is in fact the worst. Many times I find myself wondering “am I too old to do this, too old to go there, too old for that guy?”  (I did the older guy/younger guy thing; it didn’t work but that’s another story). I like it when these twenty-something kids try to put me down and call me “old man”. I tell them right

Do you use cannabis for medical purposes?

published: November, 22, 2011 Categories // Health, Revolving Door, Living with HIV, Guest Authors

. . . or do you have a medical condition or symptoms that could be treated with cannabis? If the answer is yes, the Canadian AIDS Society would like you toparticpate in their confidential study.

Do you use cannabis for medical purposes?

The Canadian AIDS Society has been collaborating with researchers at the University of British Columbia, with the Canadian Treatment Action Council, the Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network, the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries and others to conduct a survey, the Cannabis Access for Medical Purposes Survey (CAMPS). The information collected will be useful to understand the barriers and facilitators to access to cannabis for medical purposes. Here's the link (see below): http

Acid Reflux: An irreverent walk down memory lane.

published: November, 21, 2011 Written by // Brian Finch - Founder Categories // Activism, Living with HIV, Brian Finch

My inspiration was the dark humour of a bunch of guys in AIDS in the 1980s and early 90s who created their own Zine called, Diseased Pariah News. These were dark times and they required dark humour.

Acid Reflux: An irreverent walk down memory lane.

While trying to find an old photo I came across some of my old graphics for my blog, Acid Reflux, that I began in 2005. Way back then I wanted to start writing, but I wasn't quite sure how to go about it. I just knew that I wanted to write. Blogs were becoming more popular at that point and they were quite easy to set up. These were the days before Twitter and Facebook, and a blog was one of the principle ways to communicate via the new "social media." My inspiration was the dark humour

A Caribbean Story, Part Two

published: November, 21, 2011 Categories // Gay Men, Living with HIV, Population Specific

Scott Foley, a new immigrant seeking refugee status in Canada, continues the story of his childhood and awakening sexuality.

A Caribbean Story, Part Two

In Part One, Scott described his early years, leading up to disclosing to those around him, at age six, that he thought Kevin Costner attractive. Scott: That Kevin Costner episode left me totally confused. Why was I punished? Was it because I said he was cute? And what’s a fag anyway? I was only six and didn’t know the answers to those questions. I continued doing what I enjoyed which was playing with my cousin Michelle. One day we were running around the front yard where my uncle Jim wa

Do we need another hero?

published: November, 18, 2011 Categories // Gay Men, Living with HIV, Population Specific

Our London correspondent Denis Robinson in the first of a series on heroes – people who make a difference in our community. First in the spotlight is Garry Brough, of the Terrence Higgins Trust.

Not long after I began to write my own blog a close friend and I were having a conversation, I had sent him the link to the blog early on. We had been chatting on Facebook about what each of us was up to. He was very complimentary about it at the time but it was only a few weeks later while attending a mutual friends birthday that he really opened up about how he felt about the blog. He told me that I was making a huge difference to people by being so open regarding my status and my journey s

Affairs of the heart

published: November, 18, 2011 Written by // Philip Minaker - Style Categories // Dating, Gay Men, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Philip Minaker

Are you the gay for me? Philip Minaker checks in on the online dating scene and finds that love is sometimes worth waiting for.

Affairs of the heart

I’m not sure if it was the last full moon, the recent cold snap or if I was one of the featured members on the yes, no or maybe option on the online dating site I am hooked up to but OMG! After three months from signing up, I have suddenly become a hot commodity. I have been bombarded by all kinds of interested candidates trying to grab my attention… and a few of my body parts as well. There is definitely a portion of would be suitors looking for a quick “hook up”, especially when you

Hello Work, Hello Parents

published: November, 17, 2011 Categories // Gay Men, Revolving Door, Living with HIV, Guest Authors, Population Specific

Part 5 of American Brian the Shochusucker’s tale of the trials and tribulations of navigating the Japanese health care system – and life – after being diagnosed with HIV while living in Japan.

Hello Work, Hello Parents

It was late October, 2010 and Fall was in the air. The days were warm, with a bit of a chill at night. I had already been put on meds, for PCP pneumonia and to combat other types of infections. One I would only take once a week. I asked my Doctor about side effects. He thought I might be fine, but the mac might affect my stomach. I was thinking nausea, but as it turned out, after an hour of taking it, I felt as if I had been kicked in the stomach. I found that ginger ale helped. Every time I

The Shawn Decker Interview:

published: November, 15, 2011 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Social Media, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Media, Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy talks to HIV-positive speaker, writer and social media superstar Shawn Decker about life, love and Depeche Mode.

The Shawn Decker Interview:

Despite being born with mild hemophilia, Shawn Decker enjoyed a pretty normal childhood. At the age of 11, he was infected with HIV through the use of tainted blood products and expelled from public school. He was re-admiitted “because his mother would eventuallyhave killed someone had they not let him back in.” For the next ten years, Shawn kept his HIV status to himself, barely talking to his parents or doctors and never mentioning his pet virus by name, though he did jump at the chanc

HIV It's Different Now

published: November, 15, 2011 Written by // John McCullagh - Publisher emeritus Categories // Activism, As Prevention , Features and Interviews, Health, Living with HIV, John McCullagh

John McCullagh talks to HIV positive activist Denise Becker about a new, innovative “seek and treat” campaign in Vancouver that aims to identify and treat the estimated one in four people who are infected with HIV but don’t know it.

HIV It's Different Now

If you live in Vancouver and you’re an adult who’s ever had sex, the chances are you’ll be offered an HIV test with your next routine medical examination. This four-year, $48 million pilot project funded by the BC government, is a “seek and treat” program whose objective is to identify and treat the estimated one in four people who are infected with HIV but don’t know it. The project, supported by an advertising campaign though social and more conventional media, is purposely cast

An immigrant’s tale

published: November, 14, 2011 Categories // Gay Men, International , Living with HIV

Scott Foley is seeking refugee status in Canada. He’s gay and he’s poz. In the this first part of a series, he tells of his of his childhood in the Caribbean.

An immigrant’s tale

My name is Scott Foley. I am a 24 year old HIV positive gay man. I was born and raised in the Caribbean and I lived there until July 2011. I now live in Canada as a refugee claimant seeking protection from my native land on the basis of my sexual orientation and HIV status. My parents spilt up shortly after I was born. My mother migrated to Canada before my first birthday where she gave birth to my sister. I remained in the care of my father until he migrated to the US with his new girlf

Press Your Luck: An Online Dating Parable

published: November, 14, 2011 Categories // Dating, Gay Men, Lifestyle, Living with HIV

Positively Dating on avoiding the whammies on online profiles, how to give bad dates the brush off and avoiding giving out the whammies yourself.

Press Your Luck: An Online Dating Parable

Online dating is tricky. One might even say it is akin to going on a blind date. At least with the latter you are being set up by friends who hopefully have your best interests at heart and not by a random computer equation. It can be quite surprising when X + Z = Y actually solves in your favor. A major problem with online dating is creating your own profile. It can be overwhelming. You must sound articulate, funny, adventurous, and sexy. It usually takes me at least four drafts before

OMG, I forgot to take my meds

published: November, 11, 2011 Written by // John McCullagh - Publisher emeritus Categories // Health, Treatment, Living with HIV

John McCullagh describes his panic when, for the first time, he forgot to take his anti-HIV medication and how it took the calm assurance of his doctor that the drugs weren’t going to fail to allow him finally to relax

OMG, I forgot to take my meds

I suppose it happens to all of us from time to time, but it was a first for me. I forgot to take my anti-HIV meds. When I first went on HIV drug treatment 20 months ago, my doctor emphasized the importance of adherence. In other words, in order for the treatment to work and for the virus not to develop resistance to the drugs I’m taking it’s important to take my meds on time, every time. I’m an obsessive-compulsive person at the best of times, so I was sure I wasn’t going to mess up

Retirement Planning Road Trip

published: November, 11, 2011 Categories // Aging, Women, Living with HIV

New signee Shari Margolese says “as I creep closer to my 50th birthday, big 5 -0 next year folks, I am beginning to think about where I would like to spend my retirement years.”

Of course for the most part this is a good thing especially since nineteen years ago when I was diagnosed with HIV I didn’t expect to hit 40. The downside is that i also didn’t really plan for retirement.I haven’t really saved any money or thought about where i might like to spend my twilight years. So I decided that a) better start to look around for a nice place to settle once my nest is empty - could be almost anytime and b)I'd better start to save a bit of money . I quickly rea

Ask Andrew Sullivan Anything: Longevity

published: November, 11, 2011 Categories // Aging, Health, Revolving Door, Living with HIV

He credits sleep, exercise, prayer, testosterone--and coconut M&M's.

Ask Andrew  Sullivan Anything: Longevity

The article "Longevity With HIV" By Oriol R. Gutierrez Jr. first appeared in AIDSmeds on October 27, 2011 Blogger extraordinaire and POZ cover boy Andrew Sullivan has posted another HIV-related video in his "Ask Me Anything" series on his blog, The Daily Dish. These videos give him an opportunity to personally respond to reader inquiries. Click here to watch his previous HIV-related video, in which he was asked: "When did you find out you had HIV?" In his

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