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Author Topic: Completely Humbled By The Courage And Strength Of Indidviduals On POZ  (Read 2435 times)

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Offline humbleobserver

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Hello everyone as my name states I'm just a humble observer on this site. I'm HIV neg but I just wanted to comment and say how much I admire the love, wisdom, support and strength that is shared amongst members of the POZ community. I read through many of the posts and visited many of the articles on this website in the past 4 days due to a recent incident that occurred. I've seen what seems to be some of the most courageous individuals who will never be given credit for their strength and determination to live and help others live. Many in this world can learn a lot about humanity and togetherness from the POZ community. I just want to say I will pray and wish for a cure for everyone of you. I've learned that in life it's pointless to let what seems to be a huge crisis get you down because somewhere, someone out there is going through 10x worse than you and is managing to keep a smile on their face.

From the bottom of my heart I truly wish all of you health, strength and life and most of you (weasel this goes out to you most of all after reading your latest posts) when things seem to be at their worst always remember this is light at the end of every tunnel.

Also, I just wanted to know how I could go about giving back to the community by becoming and educator to the youth about being safe and protection. Also, in what ways can I contribute to help the POZ community?

Thank you for your time and ears,

The HumbleObserver.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2013, 08:46:04 PM by humbleobserver »

Online Jeff G

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Re: Completely Humbled By The Courage And Strength Of Indidviduals On POZ
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2013, 08:57:56 PM »
Hi Observer , I have moved your thread into the Someone I care about Has HIV forum .
As a HIV negative person you are not permitted to post in the Living With HIV forum . 

If you are interested in learning about HIV our lesions section is something you may want to check out . Best of luck to you .

Offline humbleobserver

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Re: Completely Humbled By The Courage And Strength Of Indidviduals On POZ
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2013, 09:51:27 PM »
Hi Observer , I have moved your thread into the Someone I care about Has HIV forum .
As a HIV negative person you are not permitted to post in the Living With HIV forum . 

If you are interested in learning about HIV our lesions section is something you may want to check out . Best of luck to you .

Sorry for that I wasn't aware that I couldn't post in the Living With HIV Forum.

Offline Jmarksto

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Humble; Thank you for recognizing those on here that give as much as they do - this is a special place.

In terms of where you can give back - the first thing that comes to mind is your local Aids Service Organization (ASO), which would be a good place to start to help with outreach activities. If you are looking to support advocacy on a larger stage, there are a number of organizations, including the Treatment Action Group,  www.treatmentactiongroup.org , I am sure you can find more information in the Aids Activism forum.

Thanks again, and I wish you the best,
JM
03/15/12 Negative
06/15/12 Positive
07/11/12 CD4 790          VL 4,000
08/06/12 CD4 816/38%   VL 49,300
08/20/12 Started Complera
11/06/12 CD4   819/41% VL 38
02/11/13 CD4   935/41% VL UD
06/06/13 CD4   816/41% VL UD
10/28/13 CD4 1131/45%  VL 25
02/25/14 CD4   792/37%  VL UD
07/09/14 CD4 1004/39%   VL UD

Offline ARMANDO

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hey humble,it's nice to know that someone is actually listening to our stories and that we are just not swept under the carpet as another statistic.

Offline humbleobserver

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hey humble,it's nice to know that someone is actually listening to our stories and that we are just not swept under the carpet as another statistic.

Armando it's sad that humanity is so judgmental and quick to make rash conclusions they believe to be true before taking the time to research and truly understand a situation. I really want to do something to help the LGBT individuals who are victims of HIV/AIDS. I'm trying to start a drive to make money for individuals suffering with this disease. I'm looking for advice on the best way of making sure the proceeds go to the right place. I work for a big corp that is heavily involved charity work. I'm trying to talk to my GM to see if we can put together an event or promotion to help raise money and awareness this way as well. He's a wonderful person who really has a passion for charity and I truly believe he will give me the help I need for this cause.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2013, 12:33:14 AM by humbleobserver »

Online Jeff G

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Armando it's sad that humanity is so judgmental and quick to make rash conclusions they believe to be true before taking the time to research and truly understand a situation. I really want to do something to help the LGBT individuals who are victims of HIV/AIDS. I'm trying to start a drive to make money for individuals suffering with this disease. I'm looking for advice on the best way of making sure the proceeds go to the right place. I work for a big corp that is heavily involved charity work. I'm trying to talk to my GM to see if we can put together an event or promotion to help raise money and awareness this way as well. He's a wonderful person who really has a passion for charity and I truly believe he will give me the help I need for this cause.

There are many organizations that are already doing good work in the areas you say you want to help with , that interest you . I assume you are looking to donate to a good organization and not start your own ?

The Clinton Foundation is a good place to look and so is the Gates Foundation , it makes since to give donations to already existing organizations because they are up and running and legitimate , you wouldn't want to duplicate services and waste money that could be going to a person in need .

Offline Ann

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I really want to do something to help the LGBT individuals who are victims of HIV/AIDS.


Admirable, but do you intend to ignore the straight folks who end up living with hiv? I hope not. One of the reasons this pandemic continues is because of the mistaken belief (or is it wishful thinking?) that hiv only affects GBT populations.
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline humbleobserver

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Admirable, but do you intend to ignore the straight folks who end up living with hiv? I hope not. One of the reasons this pandemic continues is because of the mistaken belief (or is it wishful thinking?) that hiv only affects GBT populations.

Sorry for the confusion Ann, I don't mean to exclude straight folks who ended up with hiv I just feel like I could do something to help the GLBT community and at the same time raise awareness about the misconceptions that HIV and AIDS is predominantly a GLBT thing. I want to show the individuals the togetherness and corporation members amongst the GLBT community have and how they help each other and straight individuals who struggle with the disease.

Basically my first goal is to raise awareness of the misconceptions associated with HIV while raising proceeds. My second and end goal is to show how everyone is in this together, whether poz or neg because we are all human beings. I want to show how the GLBT community have come together since the 1980's when it was thought be the "gay disease'' and no one else was really reaching out to them and they were cast aside. I also want to address a fact that's never given light which is the gov and other organizations see HIV/Aids as something that "Has passed" due to the statistic, <40% of the individuals infected are reaching 50 or older. Because of this lots of funding that have been going into finding a cure has been cut. Even if we aren't able to find a cure we can still create even better meds that are less harmful to the organs in the human body and have less side effects. This ways LTS can live well into their 60's with less adverse effects. And lastly I want to bring attention for the need to raise funding to help people with HIV-2 which effects those from the poorest countries in the world, predominantly in West Africa. Like everyone else these people need help to.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2013, 01:12:30 PM by humbleobserver »

Offline leatherman

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Admirable, but do you intend to ignore the straight folks who end up living with hiv? I hope not. One of the reasons this pandemic continues is because of the mistaken belief (or is it wishful thinking?) that hiv only affects GBT populations.
don't discourage him, Ann.  ;) according to what some people think (and I include myself), the GLBT community seems to hav the mistaken belief that HIV infection doesn't happen anymore or that it's not something to worry about anymore. In America (and many 1st world countries) HIV is still mostly a GLBT problem that hasn't gone away.

"Where the Hell Is Our Community?" by Michael Kaplan
http://www.poz.com/articles/michael_kaplan_2676_23837.shtml

Because of this lots of funding that have been going into finding a cure has been cut.
so not true! More research about a cure is happening now more than ever before. Finally enough science has been learned about HIV to make meaningful roads towards a cure. Now that more good meds are on the market, and fewer pozzies are dying like flies without any treatment, money has been able to be shifted from the immediate goal of finding any medication that helps to actually searching for a cure based on the knowledge about ccr5 receptors, resevoirs, the structure of HIV, and all the new stuff learned about retroviruses etc.

Even if we aren't able to find a cure we can still create even better meds that are less harmful to the organs in the human body and have less side effects. This ways LTS can live well into their 60's with less adverse effects.
Side effects of the newer meds generally happen in less than 10%, and often less than 5%, of the patients taking medications. With many drugs and regimes available, side effects aren't near the problem they are now as they were years ago. (for the record, I'm 51, been on meds for 21 yrs, and because I switched to some newer stuff about 5 yrs ago, I have ZERO side effects)

<40% of the individuals infected are reaching 50 or older
...
This ways LTS can live well into their 60's with less adverse effects.
Another untruth! for nearly 10 yrs, studies have been showing that HIV poz people on successful treatment live out a "normal" life span (try 70s and 80s rather than the 60s LOL). I think you must have misread something. The statistic is by 2015 >50% of those living with HIV will be 50 yrs and older.

Why? Two reasons.
1) Older people are still having sex (http://www.thebody.com/content/art6036.html) and getting infected (gay men are still not protecting themselves enough, so young AND older gay men are constantly becoming infected. see the article I referenced to Ann);
2) because the meds have been so damned good, me and my friends from the 80s and 90s aren't dying and living to be 50, 60, 70 and older.

And lastly I want to bring attention for the need to raise funding to help people with HIV-2 which effects those from the poorest countries in the world, predominantly in West Africa. Like everyone else these people need help to.
call, write and email Congress and the President asking them to stop cutting the successful PEPFAR program ;)
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline Rev. Moon

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Admirable, but do you intend to ignore the straight folks who end up living with hiv? I hope not. One of the reasons this pandemic continues is because of the mistaken belief (or is it wishful thinking?) that hiv only affects GBT populations.



I agree with you, but at least he's trying.  Of course, words are merely words, actions count.  I see and hear a lot of good intentions from many heads in the gay community but not a whole lot of actual activism.
"I have tried hard--but life is difficult, and I am a very useless person. I can hardly be said to have an independent existence. I was just a screw or a cog in the great machine I called life, and when I dropped out of it I found I was of no use anywhere else."

Offline humbleobserver

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don't discourage him, Ann.  ;) according to what some people think (and I include myself), the GLBT community seems to hav the mistaken belief that HIV infection doesn't happen anymore or that it's not something to worry about anymore. In America (and many 1st world countries) HIV is still mostly a GLBT problem that hasn't gone away.

"Where the Hell Is Our Community?" by Michael Kaplan
http://www.poz.com/articles/michael_kaplan_2676_23837.shtml
so not true! More research about a cure is happening now more than ever before. Finally enough science has been learned about HIV to make meaningful roads towards a cure. Now that more good meds are on the market, and fewer pozzies are dying like flies without any treatment, money has been able to be shifted from the immediate goal of finding any medication that helps to actually searching for a cure based on the knowledge about ccr5 receptors, resevoirs, the structure of HIV, and all the new stuff learned about retroviruses etc.
Side effects of the newer meds generally happen in less than 10%, and often less than 5%, of the patients taking medications. With many drugs and regimes available, side effects aren't near the problem they are now as they were years ago. (for the record, I'm 51, been on meds for 21 yrs, and because I switched to some newer stuff about 5 yrs ago, I have ZERO side effects)
Another untruth! for nearly 10 yrs, studies have been showing that HIV poz people on successful treatment live out a "normal" life span (try 70s and 80s rather than the 60s LOL). I think you must have misread something. The statistic is by 2015 >50% of those living with HIV will be 50 yrs and older.

Why? Two reasons.
1) Older people are still having sex (http://www.thebody.com/content/art6036.html) and getting infected (gay men are still not protecting themselves enough, so young AND older gay men are constantly becoming infected. see the article I referenced to Ann);
2) because the meds have been so damned good, me and my friends from the 80s and 90s aren't dying and living to be 50, 60, 70 and older.
call, write and email Congress and the President asking them to stop cutting the successful PEPFAR program ;)

Leatherman I just want to thank you for clearing up my misunderstandings. Also, the < is supposed to be a >, lol. But the clarification was much appreciated. I'm trying to learn the facts but I may run into some potholes on the way. You're a very knowledgeable individual and I thank you for your time and input. In addition, if you don't mind can you please explain what the PEPFAR program is?

Offline humbleobserver

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I agree with you, but at least he's trying.  Of course, words are merely words, actions count.  I see and hear a lot of good intentions from many heads in the gay community but not a whole lot of actual activism.

I'm honestly trying my friend, it's just I first need to find my bearings in the best direction to head towards to get this ball rolling.

Online Jeff G

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Hi Observer , feel free to share more about what has inspired you to get involved , is there somebody you care about living with HIV or have you lost friends and loved ones . ?

Offline leatherman

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can you please explain what the PEPFAR program is?
PEPFAR is the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (http://www.pepfar.gov/)

here's the wikipedia description:
Quote
The President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR/Emergency Plan) was a commitment of $15 billion over five years (2003–2008) from United States President George W. Bush to fight the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. The program initially aimed to provide antiretroviral treatment (ART) to 2 million HIV-infected people in resource-limited settings, to prevent 7 million new infections, and to support care for 10 million people (the "2–7–10 goals") by 2010. PEPFAR increased the number of Africans receiving ART from 50,000 at the start of the initiative in 2004 to at least 1.2 million in early 2008.[1][2] PEPFAR has been called the largest health initiative ever initiated by one country to address a disease. The budget presented by President Bush for the fiscal year 2008 included a request for $5.4 billion for PEPFAR.[3]

The massive funding increases have made anti-retrovirals widely available, saving millions of lives.[4][5][6] Critics contend that spending a portion of funding on abstinence-until-marriage programs is unjust[1] while others feel that foreign aid is generally inefficient.[2] According to a 2009 study published in Annals of Internal Medicine,[7] the program had averted about 1.1 million deaths in Africa and reduced the death rate due to AIDS in the countries involved by 10%.[8][9]
IMHO this was the ONLY worthwhile thing President G W Bush did.

here's why you need to contact the POTUS and Legislators about the program:
Quote
President Obama unveiled his fiscal year 2013 budget proposal to cut $563 million from the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program. Cuts of this magnitude could lead to half a million people being denied lifesaving treatment, and countless preventable new infections. Shock and dismay have since given way to frustration; some feel the administration is signaling that an era of U.S. leadership in the global fight against AIDS may be coming to an end.
http://www.treatmentactiongroup.org/tagline/2012/spring/does-obama%E2%80%99s-2013-budget-herald-end-pepfar

but don't forget that here at home in the USA, there are 31 individuals in 3 states who are on ADAP waiting lists (http://nastad.org/) - meaning although they are physically eligible to be using HIV meds, and they are fiscally eligible to get assistance, there is no help and no meds for these people until those states get new funding or someone already on the program dies and frees up a space.

plus there are plenty of local AIDS service organizations throughout the states - and probably near you - that could use volunteers and/or funding to help in your area. Shoot! since Medicaid is the biggest provider of health care to HIV positive people, you could learn more about how Medicaid expansion will help those with HIV and advocate for that. (as my SC state HIV task force has been doing this year http://schacctf.org)
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

 


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