Wale Justice

JUSTICE! Justice for one! Justice for all! Why do we make them slap we, kick we, abuse we.

Me sidung pan de corner a hold a meds; All of a sudden! me see a dread pull a dauta out of a corner, him kick her, him box her, him punch her, she drops and hit her lip with tears running down her cheek, I said,” oh my gosh! What a clash! The woman was defenseless, how could this be?”

Tears running from my eyes, my heart full with pain, just to see another woman in pain. What a lost; just to see a woman lose her dignity through violence and weakness. How can a man say he loves you, when he is killing you with his punches and grudges, as if you are a ball?

Woman get up! Stand up from your fall!

JCW+ Participant

Dear Mr. Abuser

This is your victim speaking, listen and listen good! You took my voice, you took my peace of mind, you took my trust that I had for men away from me, you took my heart and tore it into pieces!

I cried for you to stop but you did not Listen to me! You ignored me! I hated myself, I blamed myself.  I thought that I made this happened to me, I thought I was responsible for all that had happened.

People blamed me and I felt ashamed but no more will I be broken! No more will I hold my head down in shame of what you did to me! No more will I take the blame for you! I am taking back my voice!

It’s time we stand for our rights and the rights of our children who are being abuse, they are blamed for the abuse and the perpetrators are left free and blameless to take away the voices of other young persons.

Let’s stand for what is right! we will no more be silent!

JCW+ Participant

 

 

Providing health care with dignity

The results are in undetectable = untransmissible; it had been for sometime.  Promotion seems necessary, we are still trying to sell PrEP (Pre-exposure prophylaxis)  that is when people at very high risk for HIV take HIV medicines daily to lower their chances of getting infected… And now we have even better outcomes to share; people with undetectable viral loads cannot pass on HIV to their sex partners.

Lots of people living with HIV have injected  “I’m undetectable“… in their peer conversations.  Imagine how relieve they are to add … “uninfectious which means I will not pass on HIV to  you when disclosing to sex partners.

For the  people who make it their business to inject fear into sexuality and sexual relationships for people living with HIV it will be difficult to embrace the results undetectable = untransmissible .    Many continue to harbor (believe) outdated information on HIV.  The ones who continue to spread unhealthy fear from their places of influence; such as health care workers at HIV treatment sites.  Some are so set in their judgmental behavior  which can breed shame in the clients they serve, and shame is a known enemy of health and recovery…defeating the purpose they are engaged to fill.

Undetectable = untransmissible …mmm.  What does this really mean for women living with HIV?   Will this be motivation to tolerate the side effects of ARVs?

Will access to treatment and care become more accessible?  Health care providers that respect clients/patients and provide dignified treatment and care.  Schedule blood test with the results available in a timely manner and discussed with clients.  Pharmacist that respect your privacy and confidentiality enough to resist making snide remarks to your love ones picking up your prescription.

JCW+ will be having Test , Start and Stay conversations for women living with HIV because it is important that we are in an informed position to take responsibility for our health….and demand a quality standard of care.

In January 2017, the Ministry of Health’s National HIV Programme adopted the 2015 (World Health Organization) WHO guidelines, which recommend that anyone who is diagnosed HIV positive be offered treatment (Test and Start).  Treatment as a method of prevention is another benefit of the WHO new guidelines as more PLHIV are virally suppressed and consequently the risk of transmission is decreased.

According to the announcement made last year at the National HIV Programme annual review and planning retreat, the ‘Test & Start’ initiative anticipates that an additional 1200 new patients will be eligible for treatment.

Current estimates are that over twenty nine thousand persons are living with HIV in Jamaica; but approximately 19% are unaware of their status.

HIV is very much on the priority agenda..it is the approaches to interventions that MUST be adjusted.

Letting Go of Fear

S. Strachen

Fear is at the core of codependency. It can motivate us to control situations or neglect ourselves.
Many of us have been afraid for so long that we don’t label our feelings fear. We’re used to feeling upset and anxious. It feels normal.
Peace and serenity may be uncomfortable.
At one time, fear may have been appropriate and useful. We may have relied on fear to protect ourselves, much the way soldiers in a war rely on fear to help them survive. But now, in recovery, we’re living life differently.
It’s time to thank our old fears for helping us survive, then wave good-bye to them. Welcome peace, trust, acceptance, and safety. We don’t need that much fear anymore. We can listen to our healthy fears, and let go of the rest.
We can create a feeling of safety for ourselves, now. We are safe, now. We’ve made a commitment to take care of ourselves. We can trust and love ourselves.
God, help me let go of my need to be afraid. Replace it with a need to be at peace. Help me listen to my healthy fears and relinquish the rest.

Freedom from Compulsive Disorders

S. Strachen

Thank you for keeping me straight yesterday. Please help me stay straight today.
—paraphrased from Alcoholics Anonymous
When I first began my recovery from codependency, I was furious about having to begin another recovery program. Seven years earlier, I had begun recovery from chemical dependency. It didn’t seem fair that one person should have to address two major issues in one lifetime.
I’ve gotten over my anger. I’ve learned that my recoveries aren’t isolated from one another. Many of us recovering from codependency and adult children issues are also recovering from addictions: alcoholism, other drug dependency, gambling, food, work, or sex addiction. Some of us are trying to stay free of other compulsive disorders—ranging from caretaking to compulsively feeling miserable, guilty, or ashamed.
An important part of codependency recovery is staying clean and free of our compulsive of addictive behaviors. Recovery is one big room we’ve entered called healthy living.
We can wave the white flag of surrender to all our addictions. We can safely turn to a Power greater than ourselves to relieve us of our compulsive behavior. We know that now. Once we begin actively working a program of recovery, God will relieve us of our addictions. Ask God each morning to help us stay free of our addictions and compulsions. Thank God for helping us the day before.
Today, God, help me pay attention to all my recovery issues. Help me know that before I can work on the finer points of my recovery, such as my relationships, I must be free of addictive behaviors.

Thanks to Sophie for sharing on Facebook

My Positive Partner

I always speculated that being involved with someone who’s HIV positive will be like an end of the world for me. To think of it, I was ignorant and blindly uneducated of the fact there is life after being aware of a positive status.

My partner is HIV positive and there have never been a point in my subconscious on which it seems like I should give up on her or us. When she disclosed to me before our intimacy, I appreciated her more as she has given me a choice to stay with her or leave; I respected her more and took the time out to be sensitized as to the facts and myths surrounding HIV. What stood out to me was that my spouse was and is loaded with a wealth of information about HIV and that motivated me as to her being informative and demonstrated good self-care.

Life is a gift and being HIV positive is not a death sentence! Being fully aware of HIV is a lid opener. Sometime it’s better to look over the mountain top than to stare at its lowest perspective, “Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth” ST. Matthew 5:5. My spouse has demonstrated that living with HIV doesn’t mean to overshadow one’s self with negativity, one should remain in a positive frame of mind. I have no regrets accepting my spouse with her positive status, I’m happier and less arrogant or irascible than before. Knowing that my partner is HIV positive has given me the motivation to work harder and the will power to push to the fullest of my abilities as she doesn’t allow her positive status to hinder her from being a nation builder or living to her fullest potential.

Don’t sit feeling sorry for yourself or depressed due to your positive status that can be controlled and maintained medically (medication adherence). Live and love life while being positive, have a positive mind-set each day, live every day, every present moment to the fullest.

It might sound uncanny to some and most probably will be perplexed thinking I’m crazy to be involved with a HIV positive partner but after all, her status doesn’t defines her or the beauty she possess inside. Out with the old in with the new, tolerance, awareness and knowledge allows room for less stigma and discrimination. My partner gave me a choice, her honesty and wealth of knowledge about HIV gave me hope and a different mind-set about positive individuals. Live your life and shine brighter than before!

BY: Supportive partner

INSPIRED

It just hit me of how low I was some few months ago, I was so uncomfortable with where I was and had no clear picture of where I was going. In that discomfort I analyzed my life and what was up. Money issues, broken promises and missed expectations.

I kept a list of what I wanted, how I wanted it and would look at it from time to time. I just began with what I could offer. I thank heaven’s for one person who still believed in me when everyone else had lost faith.  

Today I am not where I was late last year, I joined groups on Facebook (CYWAG), tried this and that, here and there, as I aimed high and the stars kept aligning in my favor to this minute I am hoping you will be inspired.

What do you have in your hands now? what can you offer? start there! So much information is out there only if you want it and expecting it. Make that list and as you look at it, things will become clearer as you think of it, people will enter your life and hold your hands.

If it’s a rocky time, rejoice and rewrite your life, then see the magic happen. Be sad, irritable, try new things, fail, win then fail, cry, lose hope, wonder when and why. Then RISE slowly  and remind yourself of those little wins, they hold you up when you slide.

With time, it will all fall back in place. I promise, just don’t stay down there, don’t copy, listen to what’s inside you, you got this!

By: Moana