Be Safe, LGBTs in the Philippines

HIV/AIDS. Diseases associated with Gays or MSM (Men who have Sex with Men). Many people, especially homophobics, think that gays spread HIV and AIDS. Most of us hear “bakla, salot”comments from homophobic individuals. FYI, it’s not only the gays who spread HIV/AIDS, but also heterosexual men who cannot avoid having sex with many women. Hindi lang mga bayot ang nagkaka-Aida.

Pupil in Obsidian - Rock Ed Safety Series Gig

We, as LGBTs, need to be aware of this killer disease and prevention is always better rather finding ways to cure it. This is the very first step in preventing this disease to spread. It’s good that Rock Ed Philippines initiated an awareness “Safety Series Gigs” to spread awareness about HIV and AIDS. Watching gigs aren’t just for entertainment only, at least Rock Ed produces gigs that are social consciousness-worthy.  Karla and I were able to watch one of the Safety Series gigs in Obsidian Bar in Ortigas last August. Bands that performed were Pupil, Gaijin, Archipelago, Delara and Sunday Crib. During the gig, we helped out the Rock Ed peeps to distribute condoms to the attendees. 🙂

Raimund Marasigan of Gaijin 3

While I am writing this blog post, I am doing some research and it’s interesting to see some HIV postive bloggers  that still keep a normal life. Learning about HIV and AIDS is different when you are reading a real person’s experience. They’re called “pozzies”, people who are inflicted with HIV. Some of them are positibo.wordpress.com, fishinthepacific.blogspot.com/, poz23.blogspot.com/,  and thegreenmandiary.blogspot.com. Read their blogs for you to understand how they live.

By the way, here are some popular misconceptions about HIV and AIDS:

  • HIV is the same as AIDS
    • What’s the difference between the two aside from the spelling? Well, HIV means Human Immunodeficiency Virus while the latter is Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. AIDS is a collection of all the symptoms, diseases. HIV may cause AIDS but not all HIVs will be developed into AIDS. HIV can just remain as it is for years. When someone has HIV, the individual is susceptible in acquiring other kinds of diseases because the immune system is already weakened.
  • HIV and AIDS can be spread through oral sex
    • It has a very minimal chance that HIV and AIDS can spread by engaging in oral sex. The highest risk of getting this disease is through anal or vaginal sex. The only time that a person can be inflicted with HIV or AIDS through oral sex if the person who performs this has gum diseases (bleeding) or open sores in the genitals or the mouth. Rimming someone who has HIV also has a low risk in transmitting HIV but you may get other diseases such as gonorrhea or hepatitis.
  • Only homosexual men spread HIV and AIDS
    • This is so not true. The highest risk of getting this is through anal sex IRREGARDLESS of sexual orientation. So whether heterosexual or homosexual, both can still have this disease. Proper use of condom is highly encouraged.

What you should know is that HIV can be spread through exchange of bodily fluids. So DO NOT have sex with someone who has HIV WITHOUT CONDOMS, DO NOT share needles with other people and DO NOT breastfeed a baby when diagnosed with HIV.

To know more about HIV and AIDS, please visit these websites:

http://positivism.ph

http://www.aidsphil.org/

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