Used to be in the old days back in the 80's and 90's HIV was one community fighting on the front lines. Watching our friends dying, fighting with the government for the President to just say the word HIV and fund monies for HIV support, and encourage Pharmaceutical companies to begin clinical trials with new meds other than AZT and DDI which was all that was available. In 1996 clinical trials for protease inhibitors… read more
This is such a valid point and so well-written. It is so easy nowadays to pass it off as the chronic disease that is manageable with one pill that people forget what has gone before them. I think it is true, that people don’t want to be reminded of how it often used to be; the deaths, the vast amount of pills, the horrific side effects.
I know I went straight onto a clinical trial, over 30 tablets a day, food restrictions every day, luckily no lipodystrophy but it was commonplace, and I count myself lucky that I was on the first stream of ARVs, along with my AZT/3TC. I had friends dying of the illness and have suffered the physical side effects and effects on my body due to the toxicity of the drugs.
I think I possibly do discriminate in that I have more compassion for those that have had the disease for longer, thinking about what they have endured to make it this ‘safer’ place that it is now. But people can be sicker having just acquired it than someone who has had it for years and has it under control. I must bear this in mind in future, thank you for raising the point.
I admit, I am alarmed when someone has a cd4 count of 60. Mine remains over 1000. That doesn't make me better than the next person, maybe just a little bit luckier. Also I have certain reactions to those who acquired the virus thru IV drug use. And then there are straights like Magic Johnson who acquired it by not wearing condoms. Bottom line = HIV is the great leveler. Regardless of how it was contracted, sufferers need humane treatment & to know they are loved. We can rearrange the chairs on the Titanic, but all of us are vulnerable & many are fearful. If ever there was a time for the Poz community to come together, it seems like now is a good starting point. That's why I think the 'My HIV Team' platform is so valuable. It brings all of us together in a safe venue to seek common ground.
I think people like to think they are okay with the "disease" but deep down that fundamental prejudice and fear is rooted in their opinions. This puts limits on us in jobs, promotions, renting apartments, insurance and countless other areas straight and gay politicians making laws. I would like to think that we need to gather our placards and flags and become vocal again to fight for our gay rights in this "demagoguery" society we currently live in.
Yes I do think there Widespread Discrimination again people with HIV no one wants to be near you or touch you. You loose your friends even your family sometimes turn against you an most of all Trump is the biggest one.
I agree with you. I'm glad we have this platform to come together for care and support. I live in a big city and interestingly there are very few support groups for people with HIV. Especially for long term survivors. Still searching. Also finding a therapist who has some knowledge about HIV.. The best therapist I ever had who really got it, a fantastic person, unfortunately and sadly retired due to Cancer.