AIDs and marriage

JSAIS: In my opinion, I know we all have one,,,,but I have a few….. I feel it’s time to start looking closely at the ideas we have been hammered with over the years, the ones we try so hard to live up to, and if we fall short feel that we have failed. The myth of marriage, nothing is wrong with marriage, it’s a beautiful thing, but let’s face it ladies, you cannot put your life in your husband’s hands. Studies show the majority of black women with HIV are married. Being married does not mean you have to have unprotected sex. Ladies no longer can you put your lives in your husband’s hands and vice versa………..Trust your gut don’t trust your heart. Make him wrap it up!!

Real talk, when I first moved to Philly, I hung out with a “down-low” brother, who confided in me about is lifestyle. We were great friends because right off the bat I told him I knew he was gay. He respected my honesty, and as I said before, we became fast friends… Platonic friends that is. I learned so much from this brother, and I thank him for his openness, he cared enough about me to be brutally honest. This man only dated married men; he said “all of my male friends have been married.” I was able to witness this first hand, that’s why I had to part friendship with the brother, his lifestyle was too dark, I did not want to associate with it. Nothing wrong with being openly gay, but this man lived a deceitful, harmful lifestyle. I’m getting off the subject; I learned from this brother that most of the men he dealt with had a problem with their sexuality, that’s why they hid behind marriage. They found it easy to find a wife because women are so desperate to get married that they/we ignore the signs. Sometimes not very obvious, but always there. Most of the time after things come to light, we always remember something, that we knew wasn’t right, but ignored it anyway. Of course all married men are not on the down-low. There are good black men out there, I know some. But you don’t have to be on the down-low to step outside of a marriage, this goes for men and women alike. It happens, a lot!

Life is not a fairy tale, time to be real with ourselves, our lives, and our individual situations.

I think we should rethink the institution of marriage, Tina said it best “what does love have to do with it.” Of course there are great love stories, great marriages that last forever, but on the real how many do you know? I think people should get married for practical reasons, the bible says it best, that it’s better not to marry unless your body burns with lust…, something like that. I advocate marriage because AIDs is on the rise, with the distinct agreement, that we take care of each other’s needs. I know some say that’s what marriage is about, but evidently it has not been……….men/women cheat! The hell with having an understanding, get it in writing, just a thought.
Ladies the information is out there, if we find ourselves caught out, we don’t have anyone to blame but ourselves. We have to demand and be aggressive about our lives, about what we want, about what we stand for and what we will not stand for. It’s a hard world out here, but it’s a always a beautiful life,,,,,Our circumstance, our situations, are directly related to the choices we make. Choose life sis, make his ass wrap it up!!!

According to “Infection Control today’s website” Black women are dying from AIDs at an alarming rate!!

In ‘Hot Spots,’ HIV Infection in African-American Women is Five Times Higher Than National Estimate3 days ago
Posted in News, Hiv Infection, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Research, Research & Studies Print ICAP at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health is part of a network of research organizations that jointly released study results finding that the HIV infection rate of black women living in certain parts of the U.S. is five times higher than overall rate of infection among black women estimated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The HIV Prevention Trials Network’s (HPTN) 064 Women’s HIV Seroincidence Study (ISIS) found an HIV incidence of 0.24 percent in its study cohort of 2,099 women (88 percent Black).

Results are based on a study design that selected HIV ‘hot spots,’ i.e. geographic areas of the U.S. with elevated rates of HIV and poverty. Six distinct geographical areas in the northeast and southeast regions of the U.S. were selected—Atlanta, Raleigh-Durham, N.C., Washington D.C., Baltimore, Md., Newark, N.J., and New York City —where women, ages 18 to 44, without a prior positive HIV test were eligible for enrollment.

Within ICAP’s consortium of clinical research sites, the HPTN 064 study was conducted at three New York City-area sites: ICAP’s Harlem Prevention Center, the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, and the New Jersey Medical School Adult Clinical Research Center. Investigators for the study included Drs. Wafaa El-Sadr, ICAP director; Jessica Justman, ICAP senior technical director; Sharon Mannheimer, chief of infectious diseases at Harlem Hospital Center; Edward Telzak, chief of infectious diseases/director of AIDS Program at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center; and Sally Hodder, vice chair, Department of Medicine and Director, HIV/AIDS Program in the Division of Infectious Diseases at UMDNJ.

“This study confirms that black women in these U.S. hotspots have disproportionately been affected by HIV. While we have made significant progress in HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment, our way forward must include prevention efforts tailored for these communities that are severely affected,” says El-Sadr, who is also professor of epidemiology at Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health and professor of Medicine at the College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Women constitute roughly one-quarter of new HIV infections in the U.S. with 66 percent of these infections occurring among black women, despite the fact that black women constitute only 14 percent of the U.S. female population. In the U.S., the age-adjusted death rate of black women with HIV is roughly 15 times higher than that observed for HIV-infected white women.

Thirty-two women in the study (1.5 percent) were newly diagnosed with HIV infection, at the time of enrollment, demonstrating the need to focus efforts on expanding HIV prevention and testing in hot spot areas of the US. “The study underscores the substantial ongoing HIV transmission within specific U.S. populations and highlights the need for increased focus on areas with higher HIV prevalence,” says Justman, who is also associate professor of clinical epidemiology at the Mailman School.

The HPTN 064 (ISIS) study is funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institute of Health. Study participants were enrolled between March 2008 and July 2010.

Okay let’s talk about it,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Let me start off by saying this, don’t get it twisted world, AIDs is not a black women’s disease, AIDs does not discriminate……period! Okay, now that I have gotten that off my chest, lets talk about it…. the fact that this disease continues to be so prevalent in our community means we have not been talking about it enough. In my opinion there are number of reasons for this epidemic, this is definitely a result or our community not being proactive in a number of our issues. 1. The number of black men being locked up…… know what its hitting for in there. 2. The fact that our community is not open to the gay life style. 3. unawareness 4.self esteem issues. 5. THE MEDIA!!!!…I can go on and on…………. We cannot ignore these issues in our community, it’s time to have this conversation now……………lets talk about it, our lives depend on it! I have a niece who I want to have a long and healthy life, with a healthy, gainfully employed (if not rich) black man, have some babies…………you know the rest! I get it we are in a recession, we are busy, too busy to see whats in front of us, but deal with it now, or get hit like a ton of bricks and be knocked on your back………….Because that’s whats going to happen.. yes it can happen to you. Some of us, myself included, have a problem with being proactive, we are a reactive people, time to come down from the rat race,,,,,,,,,,,,,,time to deal with these issues. Because like Whitney Houston, when we least expect it, if will effect us, don’t wait until it’s too late.