From my recent Facebook post:
Howdy folks! I’ve been on PrEP since winter. It’s an HIV prevention regimen, a once a day pill of a drug called Truvada. It was approved for HIV prevention by the FDA in 2012, it’s use recommended by the CDC recently, and increasingly recognized by government and community health organizations as an effective tool to curb the spread of HIV, now at a plateau of 50,000 new cases a year in the US.
I’ve experienced no physical side effects. I’ve received no negative feedback from friends or strangers. I’m very public about being on it, including constantly talking about it and posting information on Facebook, listing it on Grindr and similar profiles. (Grindr is a mobile app for meeting other gay men, with a reputation for being about hookups. Similar to things in the straight world like Tindr or, well, the entire planet.) A common slur is to accuse someone on the drug of being a whore, only interested in promiscuous sex without condoms. Oh no, a human who enjoys sex and people who don’t always or ever use condoms?! That’s never happened in the history of gay people, straight people, rocks or clouds!
I encourage people on Grindr, Facebook, etc. to ask questions, and I get at least a few people every week who do. I link them to good intro articles from folks like the recent NY Mag pieces like this one: http://nymag.com/news/features/truvada-hiv-2014-7/
I’m also participating in an adherence study through UCSD (and available in LA too). Basically, I receive a text reminder every day to take my pill. It’s fun since the I chose the text contents and they’re either humorous or history and sports trivia.
I’ll put together a story for http://myprepexperience.blogspot.com/ soon enough. I hadn’t yet since it’s been nothing but positive but maybe we need to hear about that side too!
Photo Caption: What Can’t You Do on PrEP?!*
*PrEP does not guarantee your ability to summit Mt. Whitney, nor does it ensure that others appreciate you choice of neon green spandex fashion. PrEP doesn’t protect against other STI’s, splinters, hurtful words or rainy days. Please remember that while PrEP provides protection against HIV, it will not resolve your emotional issues regarding your parents, dead friends, or ended relationships. But if you wanna talk about it, I’m more than happy to chat.