Population Specific

I did it on my own

published: April, 12, 2016 Written by // Félix Garmendía Categories // Gay Men, Spirituality, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Félix Garmendía

New Yorker Felix Garmendia has rejected organized religion in favour of his own code of ethics and says this has given him “the liberty to experience things I would have never experienced if I remained chained to their strict ethical codes"

I did it on my own

I don’t have any use for any influence in my life that will dictate what’s “right” or “wrong”; I have been in that place many times.  Organized religion has been one example where that simplistic dichotomy of life has been presented to me on a silver platter. I refuse to partake in that ritual of archaic or synthetic codes of ethics that point out and expect me to blindly follow flawed judgments of what they perceive as “good” or “bad” in life.  I was always a free thi

Giving exposure to women and HIV

published: April, 11, 2016 Written by // Louis "Kengi" Carr - L.A. Correspondent Categories // African, Caribbean and Black, Activism, Arts and Entertainment, Women, Photography, International , Living with HIV, Population Specific , Louis "Kengi" Carr

Our LA guy Kengi takes on a photography assignment which opens his eyes to the work of Christie's Place, an agency serving women living with HIV and their families.

Giving exposure to women and HIV

As someone living with HIV, I’m always drawn to personal stories from people I can relate to, but those stories are very hard to find in mainstream HIV media. I’m not interested in reading stories that have more to do with fundraising efforts or advertisements. I love real life stories from the person who has experienced it. So I spend a lot of time reading personal blogs, watching YouTube or speaking to people I meet on the street.  As a photographer I’m always drawn to and interested

From the front lines: Gay men’s knowledge of new prevention strategies

published: April, 06, 2016 Written by // CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource Categories // Gay Men, CATIE, CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource, Health, Sexual Health, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific

CATIE spoke to three service providers to find their views and approaches on the issues related to talking to gay men about new prevention strategies

From the front lines: Gay men’s knowledge of new prevention strategies

This article previously appeared in CATIE’s Prevention in Focus here.   Une version française est disponible ici.   We spoke to three service providers to find their views and approaches on the issues related to talking to gay men about new prevention strategies:  Brook Biggin, Community Education Facilitator, HIV Edmonton, Edmonton, Alberta Phillip Banks, Executive Director, Peel HIV/AIDS Network (PHAN), Brampton, Ontario Chris Aucoin, Gay Men’s Health Coordinator, AIDS Coali

Packing up the man who wasn’t there

published: April, 06, 2016 Written by // Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease Categories // Gay Men, Mental Health, Health, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Mark S. King

Mark S. King and the story of his struggles with a friend who had AIDS Dementia Complex in the early days of the epidemic

Packing up the man who wasn’t there

When the health of my close friend Ron began to rapidly decline in 1987, he made the decision to leave Los Angeles to return home to rural New York to be near his family. “Just long enough to feel a little better,” he told me at the time. It was a common trajectory in those days, usually undertaken not long after delivering the news to your family that you were gay and oh, by the way, had AIDS.  I spent an afternoon helping Ron pack his things for the trip home. The chore was fraught wit

Heterosexual Identity Crisis

published: April, 05, 2016 Written by // Joshua Middleton Categories // Activism, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Joshua Middleton

Straight poz guy Joshua Middleton and The Untold Story of Shame Amongst Straight Men

Heterosexual Identity Crisis

When you think of someone living with HIV, you probably don’t think of a story like mine, right?  My (poz) heterosexual community is an unheard voice, one that is often silent by choice. HIV awareness has been left to already ostracized groups within our society, such as the gay community. Although HIV affects us all, as seen in my previous blog “Straight Up: Why the Heterosexual Story Matters”, it seems others have been left to carry the weight of this epidemic.  We hear the stories

Incredibly Loud, Extremely Close: The Day I Received My HIV Diagnosis

published: April, 05, 2016 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Newly Diagnosed, Women, Revolving Door, Guest Authors, Living with HIV, Population Specific

Incredibly Loud, Extremely Close: The Day I Received My HIV Diagnosis

This article, part of the series Day One With HIV, by Wanda L. London  from TheBody.com first appeared here.   Oh my, God, she has HIV!  This was my personal introduction to the world of HIV/AIDS. I was sitting in this cold sterilize medical exam room and looking out the window as the rain was falling; waiting for my doctor when I heard his voice announcing my status.Just like that rain falling on the windowsill; my whole life was falling before me. As each drop pinging on the window; it

It all began when I decided I needed life insurance

published: April, 04, 2016 Written by // Samantha Categories // Women, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Samantha

Our Samantha with a woman's perspective of being diagnosed with HIV and its aftermath

It all began when I decided I needed life insurance

"With understanding, collaboration and education, there is no need for anyone to experience those dark early paralyzing days I have described, after a diagnosis."   I popped in to a local cafe after a yoga class recently and ran into Bill, an old colleague and friend who, along with my doctor, I credit  for saving my life years ago. We had coffee and of course seeing him brought back memories from a very dark time in my life when he supported me and my kids, made some calls and connected m

Border crossings

published: March, 31, 2016 Written by // CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource Categories // African, Caribbean and Black, CATIE, Women, CATIE - HIV and Hep C Info Resource, International , Living with HIV, Population Specific

From CATIE’s The Positive Side come the stories of two positive Zimbabwean women who did what it took to survive – and settle in Canada

Border crossings

This article by Sane Dube originally appeared in The Positive Side, a publication of CATIE, here.  Une version française est disponible ici.   Esther and Marvelous are both animated storytellers. It’s hard to be anything but mesmerized in their presence. I spent an afternoon with each of them in conversations peppered with boisterous laughter. In the quiet moments they wove words together, effortlessly bringing their memories to life. They talked about their lives as HIV-positive Afric

Toronto’s Eastside Movement

published: March, 31, 2016 Categories // Community Events, DJ Relentless, African, Caribbean and Black, Arts and Entertainment, Gay Men, Fundraisers, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific

Our DJ Relentless on the new part of town for LGBT Entertainment

Toronto’s Eastside Movement

Spring seems like its coming and so is a change of scenery for the LGBT community. If you live in Toronto, everyone is familiar with The Gay Village on Church Street and of course the alternative scene on Queen Street West. But have you heard about The Eastside Movement?  I would say it started with a bar called WAYLA about 5 years ago. Great spot. It's actually an auto garage converted into a bar and nightclub. I have spun there on many occasions and even had a few consistent events that r

Feeling like a disaster

published: March, 31, 2016 Categories // Gay Men, Newly Diagnosed, Living with HIV, Population Specific

Two years into his diagnosis, Toronto guy Josh’s faith in himself and his need to move on is shaken by a phone call from his former boyfriend wanting to connect again

Feeling like a disaster

I’m not sure how else to put this, so let me just be blunt: fuck, life is complicated.  I’ve been making good progress in, well, life lately; I started a new job, I’ve made some new friends and I’m continuing to work through things with a therapist who has helped me deal with the trauma of infidelity and an HIV diagnosis. While it’s almost been two years, I still am coming through the proverbial tunnel.  So why is it, then, that a simple phone call, derails my life and leaves me

The challenging web series that travels from ‘Unsure’ to ‘Positive’

published: March, 29, 2016 Written by // Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease Categories // Social Media, Arts and Entertainment, Gay Men, Movies, Newly Diagnosed, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Media, Population Specific , Mark S. King

Mark S. King on a new web series that’s follows the life of a Boston gay man, literally from the moment he gets his HIV positive test result. Mark recommends it – and talks to its creator, writer and star, Christian Daniel Kiley

The challenging web series that travels from ‘Unsure’ to ‘Positive’

In the gorgeous and sometimes maddening web series Unsure/Positive, we follow the life of a Boston gay man, Kieran, literally from the moment he gets his HIV positive test result. Kieran’s journey in the six-episode first season (available for only $3.99 on Vimeo) covers some difficult terrain – shame, disclosure, sex and drugs – and many HIV positive guys and our friends will identify with it.  This is poz-adjacent art that is absolutely worth your time and a few bucks, most particula

Outside the doors of my HIV clinic

published: March, 28, 2016 Categories // Activism, Gay Men, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific

Don Short on helping people in need, but as a regular guy or as an ex-case worker?

Outside the doors of my HIV clinic

Uneventful days are created by indecision.  I have had way too many days suspended in apathy, numbing myself from the possible outcomes of decision. If I reach out and help someone, I begin to speculate…Will this turn on me? This is a message I have reluctantly believed. Years of working in a hostile, toxic environment had made me question the motive for compassion and helping my fellow man. The mixed messages and political alliances of that time choked the life out of empathy.   Take o

A humbling moment.

published: March, 25, 2016 Written by // Wayne Bristow - Positive Life Categories // Arts and Entertainment, Gay Men, Photography, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Wayne Bristow

Wayne Bristow enters a photography competition and says “this whole experience affirmed my belief that no matter what I have been through or going through now, there will always be someone less fortunate".

A humbling moment.

I have a wonderful group of peers who really know me – from the things I like (bacon) to my hobby (photography). Last December one peer was sitting on a committee with another organization that had organized an art show/contest called ‘Hope and Help: Overcoming Trauma’ and he suggested that I enter. I asked him to email me the entry information and I would take a look at it.  I downloaded the flyer, familiarized myself with the requirements and decided I would enter the contest. I coul

Eight lessons for my sexually uneducated teen self

published: March, 24, 2016 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Gay Men, Youth, Revolving Door, Guest Authors, Population Specific

From FS Magazine, what sex-ed doesn’t tell you. “I’m taking the time to look back on my sex-ignorance and highlight some of the key things I’d wished I’d known back then.”

Eight lessons for my sexually uneducated teen self

By what I can only assume was an issue with the timetable I ended up having sex education at least three times during my years of education at middle and high school (yes I went to a ‘middle school’).   And for all their effort I remember being confused, uninformed and altogether none the wiser when the teaching staff tried to inform us about the goings on of the birds and the bees, (a saying I actually still don’t fully understand the significance of. Birds don’t have sex with bees

Choose life

published: March, 24, 2016 Written by // Félix Garmendía Categories // Gay Men, Health, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Population Specific , Félix Garmendía

Felix Garmendia faces an uncertain future due to medical challenges aside from HIV and says “I'm an optimistic fighter that will face adversity with a smile and hope that at the end, everything will be OK.”

Choose life

Sometimes I become a bit anxious about my health. After almost 30 years fighting HIV and 15 years suffering from “Inclusion Body Myositis, I have my dark days where I get scared of what is going to happen to me in the near future.  It is in those times, that I can look back at my life and realize that I have lived it to the fullest.  I have no regrets about anything I did in the past or anything I am doing in the present. After all, I’m a very lucky man. I have the love of my life, my

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