Coincidental or Concerning?

  • dfrourke

    Posts: 1062

    Mar 09, 2007 6:45 PM GMT
    How the hell have we not had any topics posted in the HIV/AIDs area of this website yet?

    Ya know I am gonna start one...is this a blase topic at this point, or are we scared to talk about it?

    thoughts?
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    Mar 09, 2007 7:37 PM GMT
    Personally..

    Scared? No. I have several poz friends. It's just part of life, like a differently formed limb, or three fingers rather than four. We don't bring it up on a daily basis even though it's a part of our lives.

    I'm not afraid of getting "cooties" from them. When we had sex, we had safe sex.

    Sometimes it just turns into an issue like the color of your skin. Sometimes you just never think of it regardless of how common it is in your day to day life.

    Do I read articles and news bites about breakthroughs etc, and do we chat about them? Yeah. But hey. It's as ubiquitous as anything else in our day to day life :)

    That's about it from my perspective.
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    Mar 09, 2007 9:55 PM GMT
    Hey David...yes, this topic is so important. But be aware, there were two other forum posts (I don't know what section they are under) on "Bareback sex" and one other (I forget the title), in which there were extensive posts on spread of HIV/AIDS etc.

    But I do believe that this is a topic that should be kept active.

    I'm not frightened of the topic. What I'm frightened about were some of the responses to the other forum topics in which more than a few said that barebacking, for example, is OK in anything but extremely restrictive circumstances.

    What this tells me is that HIV/AIDs education has not gotten to many folks...and, worse, if it has gotten, they don't care.

    Frankly, HIV status has no bearing on my choice of friends/partners. However, if they are German or irish, that's a deal breaker. :-) Just kidding, just kidding. Just yanking some well-known chains...including yours...

    John
  • dfrourke

    Posts: 1062

    Mar 10, 2007 3:07 AM GMT
    very funny, John...we'll talk about this at lunch on Tuesday [smile].

    - David
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    Mar 10, 2007 11:21 PM GMT
    Here are some fact that I came accross recently put out by TROJAN on Sexually Transmitted Infections.

    HIV you get from contact with bodily fluids such as blood, semen, pre-semen, vaginal fluids and breast milk which must enter the body. It is not transmitted through casual contact (shaking hand, hugging). Not transmitted by sneezing or coughing. Not transmitted through insects or animals. The HIV virus can also be found in saliva (spit), sweat and tears, but only in small amounts. These body fluids are not known to spread HIV infection.
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    Mar 11, 2007 10:05 PM GMT
    Scared? Yes, that is why I am in a monogamus relationship. I find it awful that there are "humans" that are infected with HIV and don't even know it, some of these individuals have many partner. Perhaps the thought of casual sex is great, it has some risk factors. The sad part is I don't know if research has gotten to the bottom in terms of how one really contracts it. Maybe I am wrong!
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    Mar 13, 2007 11:04 PM GMT
    Hi,
    The forum(HIV/AIDS)has been posted but nobody until now has talked about it. Some people don't say anything because don't care
    Perhaps they think that the epidemic is over
    that the situation is under controland the goverment specially here in this country the money for everything related to HIV/AIDS
    is less and less every year. SOme guys in the gay community don't give a damn about situations like this for example who are very important to us.Some guys lie about their HIV status because for being rejected. Discrimination between gay people is just unbelievable. I'm not saying this because I experienced it I know from friends.
    Anyway I'm not going to ruin my day thinking about those people who don't care because it's worthless and I'm doing my part volunteering for a place who helps people in general who has HIV/AIDS and you know what guys? it feels great inside. It's OK to be an empty headed but you don't need to be a very smart person to know that the problem is still there. Avoiding it doesn't
    fix it. Take care guys
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    Mar 13, 2007 11:09 PM GMT
    am i scared of it? yes. i'll admit. i do know and have known people with HIV, but i do not believe i would/could date someone that is infected. i've had very few partners, and i'm a relationship-oriented guy, but at the same time, i'm not an idiot, i realize it's still possible to become infected.
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    Mar 17, 2007 1:37 AM GMT
    Let's get honest. For 30 years we've known about how AIDS / HIV is transmitted.

    You have to be illiterate, or incredibly irresponsible, to go there.

    While compassion is good, when someone knows how to keep from getting it, unless they have a tainted transfusion, or some protection breaks, there's simply no excuse for contracting the disease.

    If you're negligent about something so dangerous as HIV, if kind of hard to be all that compassionate.
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    Mar 17, 2007 4:50 AM GMT
    People make mistakes, do stupid things all the time. I don't see that as a reason to withhold compassion.

    Young gay men do not get mentored and get very little support within our community in terms of sexual/relationship guidance. It's very easy to tell someone not to have unprotected sex, but when you're coming out at 18, have been rejected by friends and family and find yourself in a sex club fucked up on tina at 3 in the morning, you can make unhealthy choices. And it doesn't have to be that outre. I've seen a dozen or more young gay men as clients who seroconverted because they "trusted" someone they loved.

    People get addicted to alcohol, they get venereal diseases, they say hurtful things, they do all sorts of of regrettable things. If compassion is only for "innocent victims" of misfortune beyond their control, it certainly shrinks the pool of available compassion.

    Finally, compassion enhances the life of the person who offers it more than the person who receives it. It doesn't eliminate the cause of his suffering, just eases his pain. Of what possible value is withholding compassion?



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    Apr 26, 2007 1:50 AM GMT
    Hi, new to this site. I'm hiv . I got it 3 years ago when I was 21. In ways I can say I got it from being careless, but too much that puts ideas in people's heads that I went out and had unsafe sex. I did have unsafe but not by choice. I was betrayed by a supposed friend. He raped me and ultimately infected me. I'm over the rape and all but still carry a reminder. Untill they find a cure I always will. I was like panicing for the first month over every sign of a cold and every burse or cut I got. If you want to know more feel free to ask. I don't hold back what I know unless I am asked to.
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Apr 26, 2007 2:21 AM GMT
    I wouldn't date a poz guy. I make no excuses, I just know I wouldn't. I feel an incredible sadness (not pity) for someone in that situation and hold a lot of respect for those who can stand under something so crushing. But I couldn't date them...and maybe that makes me a shallow person but I don't really think so. I honestly don't know anyone with HIV, but that doesn't mean I don't know it exists or that I don't think about it. I'm just as careful as I can be. I don't sleep around BECAUSE I'm scared. I'm already living to die...I don't need to hasten it.
    But one thing I want to mention, is that people in the first world tend to see aids as something earth-shattering in our first-world lives..and it is.
    But think about how many children contract the disease through NO fault of your own - way more completely innocent people contract this disease than those who knowingly take risks. Not that everyone in first-worlds take risks, but...I dunno.
    Personally, I think about it a lot. It may not have a personal impact on me, but it has had one hell of an intellectual one.
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    Apr 26, 2007 2:23 AM GMT
    Question I have always had: All things being okay, and no lesions, cuts or sores, is swallowing high risk? I heard that saliva and the acid in one's stomach 'kills' the virus.

    Thoughts??
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    Apr 26, 2007 3:05 AM GMT
    First of all, being in a monogamous relationship DOES NOT guarantee that you're protected from contracting HIV. I know a number of people who were monogamous with their partner, while unbeknownst to them their partner was not, and as a result became infected.

    Secondly, if you're uncomfortable with the thought of having sex with someone who is HIV , then you shouldn't be having sex. The only time you can verify someone's status is when they tell you they are positive. Some people may not be away of their status, and others may lie. This of course assuming that you ask your partner. Most men don't, especially in a casual situation, because (a) it's unsexy; (b)the person doesn't LOOK like they have it (again, ignorance of the face of HIV/AIDS); and (c) they assume their partner will tell them and give them the option.

    Education is the key. Sadly so many gay men are uninformed about the subject, and they don't seem to want to make the effort.

    The only thing worse is when someone writes in their profile they're looking for someone "clean" or "disease-free". While everyone is entitled to sero-sort (not that it's a guarantee), the wording is offensive and is akin to writing "no fats or fems" or nixing a particular ethnic group.

    Eductation. Education. Education. If you don't know enough about it, FIND OUT from a REPUTABLE source.
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Apr 26, 2007 8:05 AM GMT
    I don't quite understand how you can liken "I'm looking for someone who isn't hiv " to "I'm looking for someone who's not fat"

    One is a terminal illness, the other is a condition that need not be permanent. Big difference between the two. BIG difference.
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    Apr 26, 2007 1:11 PM GMT
    1) I was referring to the wording being negative and demeaning, not the actual statement (ie. "clean", "disease-free" VS. "hiv-negative looking for same").

    2) While it is a matter of debate, generally speaking HIV is NOT seen as a terminal illness but most health care practitioners, but rather a managable one. This is of course assuming that the infected individual is adhering to their medication routine (taking into consideration that they're not resistant to it) and taking care of their health in other ways (eating properly, getting plenty of exercise and rest, managing stress, cutting back/eliminating tobacco, liquor & "recreational" drugs, and practicing safer sex). Again, lack of education has people automatically thinking that you're going to die from it.

    Besides, what is the difference between practicing safer sex with someone who is positive but undetectable with medication, and having sex with someone who's status you can't verify?
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Apr 26, 2007 5:20 PM GMT
    See, it's this whole concept of HIV being a 'manageable' illness that is causing complacency.
    Yeah, there are drugs that will extend your life - but they will eventually fail. The virus mutates and it mutates rather well, and eventually you're pretty much screwed - then you die.
    Period.
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    Apr 26, 2007 6:10 PM GMT
    Gee BioMatty, I'm sure all the HIV guys reading this thread just love your optimism and compassionate tone.

    Xanadude wrote: "Besides, what is the difference between practicing safer sex with someone who is positive but undetectable with medication, and having sex with someone who's status you can't verify?"

    BINGO! When you hook up with someone, you have no reliable means of determining his HIV status, or whether or not he might be carrying other STDs. I see profiles and ads online says things like "clean only" or "neg 4 neg" or "bug free. you b 2", etc. These people are living in a fantasy world if they think that everyone is going to be honest, know his or her status, etc. Furthermore, as Xanadude points out, such language is derrogatory and insulting. There's nothing wrong with knowing your status and wanting to date someone with the same status. It's how you say it that matters.

    If you have sex, you must allow for the possibility that your partner could be positive. Only when you have established REAL trust - not imagined - and been tested together should you consider unprotected sex. And, given the overwhelming lack of fidelity in gay relationships, you're always taking a bit of a chance.
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Apr 26, 2007 6:22 PM GMT
    *shrugs* there are many on here who seem just as prickish.

    I guess it does sound kinda bad..but it's not something I'd put in my profile specifically..but that's mainly because I'm not looking for a hookup so it has absolutely no bearing on who I talk to. I completely, 100% agree with you with regards to sex and relationships - personally (and here comes my wonderful sense of optimism) I do not trust homos in the slightest.
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Apr 26, 2007 6:24 PM GMT
    And for a minute there, I actually felt bad, like I'd said something wrong.

    But it's the f*cking truth. It really f*cking sucks...but it's the truth.
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    Apr 26, 2007 6:43 PM GMT
    If you do not trust "Homos".....how can you be looking for a relationship. Do you think someone wants to pursue someone with your lack of optimism and negativity?
    Aren't you a homo? Do you not trust yourself either?

    You sound angry :-(
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    Apr 26, 2007 6:50 PM GMT
    BioMatty, it's not about "truth." It's about showing some compassion and sensitivity, being a decent and respectful human being. That's all.

    Where's all your anger coming from?
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    Apr 26, 2007 6:54 PM GMT
    Considering that the newer class of drugs have been on the market for much less time than HIV has been treated, I don't really see how you can confidently say that they will inevitably fail & that people will die.

    I do agree that saying it is a managable illness has made SOME people complacent and that they have taken unnecessary risks and in turn become infected. HOWEVER, there are other factors (ie. meeting potiential partners in bath houses, depression, low self-esteem, drug and/or alcohol use, or a combination thereof) that lead men to partake in high-risk behaviour, which in turn leads to the increase in infection rates. As such, having protected sex with someone hiv BUT on meds is still safer!

    I find it interesting that in this discussion it is mainly people under 30 who say they wouldn't/couldn't do it. I think this may have to do with the fact that there hasn't been much emphasis & education put towards the issue as it was in the late 80's & into the 90's. As opposed to being confronted with it, people now have to seek it out on their own. As such, I think that many of the (self-presumed) negative crowd have become themselves complacent in keeping themselves uneducated.
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    Apr 26, 2007 7:11 PM GMT
    And my above question just continues to be unanswered........awww....
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    Apr 26, 2007 7:48 PM GMT
    sorry about that mikeintoronto...actually I have been told swallowing is safer than "swishing" it in your mouth! There is a lesser chance of hiv entering through otherwise-unknown cuts or sores in your mouth if you just swallow. Mind you, you shouldn't be swallowing mass quantities of others' semen for other reasons (ie. a friend once got gonhorreah (sp?) of the throat (!!!) from doing that -- and it was brutal!)