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Spencer Cox, AIDS Activist, Dies at 44

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Solo_LTSurvivor:
Another memorial page dedicated to Spencer

Miss Philicia:
Not to hijack, but it is relevant -- I've personally known five long term survivors take their own lives in the past five years or so. Some were due to drugs, others were not, or if they were I didn't know the details. Some people just stop their HIV meds, having grown weary of +20 years of bullshit. Sadly this is rarely talked about. I mean, where's the front page article about this on POZ magazine? If I know this many people, and then there's this super VIP activist as discussed in this thread, wouldn't you say that this is a bit of a crisis? In fact, one of the people I know that stopped their meds was a mental health professional. I mean what really does that say? Some members of my LTS support group thought the issue was so important we raised it with the director of the largest HIV clinic in the city and never got a response.

And yes, I think part of it is going over the 40 year old mark. I also have a HIV-negative friend who fits this same pattern of freaking out over that age mark and starting a severe drug addiction late in life, when previous to that the most he ever did was drink alcohol in moderation. For the life of me I'm surprised he's not become HIV+ -- but then really all he does sexually is oral sex. Oh, and also remember that NY Times article on the HIV-negative 40-something man who was writing a book about gay men and aging and he also committed suicide -- forget his name but it was in the past year.

Dunno, it just makes me really, really angry that everyone focuses on cd4 counts and viral loads and new drugs in the pipeline. Ever since I've been on this forum I've repeatedly pointed out the high stats for depression in HIV+ patients, but from personal experience very few people actually take the time to do more than pop a SSRI or some other pill, instead of going to support groups or better yet engaging in consistent talk therapy.

Sorry for the rant, but I'm just tired of it. And I'm tired of the 40-year olds that get into meth, and then recover from it, but then seem to be hesitant to speak out more than one or twice about what they went through. It's not an easy issue because at the end of the day someone is going to do what they want to do -- you can't stand over someone and force them to take their meds, or force them to avoid going for another fix a the dealer's house, etc. But certainly the issue can be raised to a higher degree in terms of awareness. I can't even say I know what the statistics are, or if there are any collected, on this issue in any more than vague terms.

Rockin:

--- Quote from: Miss Philicia on December 22, 2012, 12:44:43 PM ---Not to hijack, but it is relevant -- I've personally known five long term survivors take their own lives in the past five years or so. Some were due to drugs, others were not, or if they were I didn't know the details. Some people just stop their HIV meds, having grown weary of +20 years of bullshit. Sadly this is rarely talked about. I mean, where's the front page article about this on POZ magazine? If I know this many people, and then there's this super VIP activist as discussed in this thread, wouldn't you say that this is a bit of a crisis. In fact, one of the people I know that stopped their meds was a mental health professional. I mean what really does that say?

And yes, I think part of it is going over the 40 year old mark. I also have a HIV-negative friend who fits this same pattern of freaking out over that age mark and starting a severe drug addiction late in life, when previous to that the most he ever did was drink alcohol in moderation. For the life of me I'm surprised he's not become HIV+ -- but then really all he does sexually is oral sex.

Dunno, it just makes me really, really angry that everyone focuses on cd4 counts and viral loads and new drugs in the pipeline. Ever since I've been on this forum I've repeatedly pointed out the high stats for depression in HIV+ patients, but from personal experience very few people actually take the time to do more than pop a SSRI or some other pill, instead of going to support groups or better yet engaging in consistent talk therapy.

Sorry for the rant, but I'm just tired of it. And I'm tired of the 40-year olds that get into meth, and then recover from it, but then seem to be hesitant to speak out more than one or twice about what they went through.

--- End quote ---

I'm not a LTS but I agree with everything on this post. This HAS to be discussed more clearly, and even for the younger pozzies like me, who want to remain optimistic about their future.

Some people are already prone to depression and the HIV only worsens that. Some begin to get depressed because of the virus. But I also blame the government and doctors who are not doing much in trying to erase the stigma associated with it. SO much misinformation that is still being spread, it's appalling. Some people lose hope, isolate themselves from society, start taking a shitload of pills for all kinds of mental health issues...its just so very sad, especially in this case.

Solo_LTSurvivor:

--- Quote from: Miss Philicia on December 22, 2012, 12:44:43 PM ---Not to hijack, but it is relevant -- I've personally known five long term survivors take their own lives in the past five years or so. Some were due to drugs, others were not, or if they were I didn't know the details. Some people just stop their HIV meds, having grown weary of +20 years of bullshit. Sadly this is rarely talked about. I mean, where's the front page article about this on POZ magazine? If I know this many people, and then there's this super VIP activist as discussed in this thread, wouldn't you say that this is a bit of a crisis. In fact, one of the people I know that stopped their meds was a mental health professional. I mean what really does that say?

And yes, I think part of it is going over the 40 year old mark. I also have a HIV-negative friend who fits this same pattern of freaking out over that age mark and starting a severe drug addiction late in life, when previous to that the most he ever did was drink alcohol in moderation. For the life of me I'm surprised he's not become HIV+ -- but then really all he does sexually is oral sex.

Dunno, it just makes me really, really angry that everyone focuses on cd4 counts and viral loads and new drugs in the pipeline. Ever since I've been on this forum I've repeatedly pointed out the high stats for depression in HIV+ patients, but from personal experience very few people actually take the time to do more than pop a SSRI or some other pill, instead of going to support groups or better yet engaging in consistent talk therapy.

Sorry for the rant, but I'm just tired of it. And I'm tired of the 40-year olds that get into meth, and then recover from it, but then seem to be hesitant to speak out more than one or twice about what they went through.

--- End quote ---

^This deserves another sticky so that we have a constant reminder of how easy it is to forget certain issues many members of the poz community are often faced and struggle to deal with.

mikeyb39:
I understand the mental issues.  I've never discussed it here just because its more personal than even discussing HIV.  I've been dealing with depression/isolation for some time which has gotten worse in that past couple years.

I had surgery years ago and got hooked on the vicodin, i could have stopped when my dr stopped prescribing, but then i would order online.  Now i'm always isolated these days and my only friend i hang with is vicodin, tramadol and ambien. 

All this was good until about 3 weeks ago when the online folks stopped sending my pills.  i'm going thru moderate withdrawls via a tapper method, but its very difficult.  i called a suboxone treatment location and they are unable to see me till the 14th, sort of defeats the purpose for the withdrawl help, soon i will run out of my stache and have to deal with it in a rough way.

i do need help mentally i no longer feel like myself these days.  Always on the edge, always have attitude problems, very difficult to deal with co-workers.  My plan is to get some help to help pull me out of this funk.

If  i go to this suboxone clinic, then i have to do intensive outpatient therapy versus going inpatient.  i don't think i can deal with the 12 step process and religious process some of these places do

I don't take a whole lot, but the withdrawals are still bad.

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