It was great to feel like I didn’t have to limit myself in certain ways when escorting, and it made me feel truly empowered to be taking the reins of my own destiny. I’ve been PrEPpy for over a year now, and, though stigma is still there, I still take it upon myself to talk about the benefits of taking PrEP while in the Sex Work field, and take the stigma out of both.
National Youth HIV/AIDS Awareness Day promises LGBTQ youth that our history matters, and that we deserve the right to education, preventative resources, treatment, and care. #NYHAAD
I asked him immediately if he was HIV negative, because otherwise I could always go to a hospital to get PEP [Post-Exposure Prophylaxis] before 72 hours passed. He reassured me that he tested negative five days ago, and I should not worry at all, because he always used condoms.
That’s the prevailing air about this topic. It’s shameful, it’s dirty, it’s met with incredulously judgemental gawks. The stigma surrounding HIV is radically ignorant, leaving the vast majority of the population in fear of so much as the topic, much more so anyone diagnosed.
Every child learns and grows at a different pace, I know back in the day kids grew up a lot faster and weren’t coddled as the ones today. I don’t think my daughter quite understands the gravity of the virus and what it comes with, the doctors, the stigma, the friends and family casting you out, mostly because of ignorance, so, when I think she can wrap her head around it is when I’ll discuss it with her.
NWGHAAD is an annual, nationwide observance that sheds light on the impact of HIV among women and girls. This is the 12th year the OWH, at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is leading the observance.