The Dark Crystal
In the article “After Party” (April/May 2016), writer Mathew Rodriguez tackled the issue of crystal meth and why gay men are still attracted to the highly addictive drug.
Everyone may have a different reason. But I believe that my generation turns to [crystal meth] for different reasons than the twentysomethings. Gay men, especially, deal with powerful emotions around aging: feeling old, undesirable and unwanted. This drug feels like a fountain of youth. We have to show my generation of gay men that they are loved and valued regardless of appearance or body image. Through self-acceptance and community acceptance, we will make a change.
I lost my heart to this euphoria called tina [slang for meth]. I was a divorcé and a virgin to it when I wanted to be popular in the gay scene. I lost 27 years of sobriety to this wonder drug. During my five-year reign of terror, I walked the line of risking my career, housing and HIV status. In the end, I lost friends and three significant others. I’ve been clean two years now, but I still feel heartless. And no matter how much sexual absolution I embrace, I still feel I’m running in those damn poppy fields.
I totally relate to this article. I started [using] meth when I lived in New York City after I found out my fiancé was cheating on me. I turned to Manhunt and met a man who offered me meth. After 10 years of using, I finally got clean over two years via inpatient rehab for eight months. I have HIV and body dysmorphia. Meth and the sex made everything seem OK. I love the healthy gay mentoring concept. Maybe it’s not too late to help in that direction. Recovery is possible!
I’m very lucky to be two and a half years sober from crystal and can totally relate to all the experiences discussed here, including the fact [that] when I decided my life was at rock bottom and needed to turn around, then I abstained from sex for almost two years to stay away from the triggers. The entire five years I was addicted I always told myself I was in control. I look back now and am blessed I had family who didn’t turn away!
In the article “ ‘Burned by the Bern’: Sanders Cancels Meeting With AIDS Advocates” (May 9, 2016), POZ reported the news that Sen. Bernie Sanders once again postponed a May meeting with HIV/AIDS leaders. Secretary Hillary Clinton met with activists on May 12; a new meeting with Sanders was scheduled for May 25.
Obviously, everyone has a right to be disappointed, and what he did could be seen as a dick move, but still, Sanders has been on the right side of history when it comes to AIDS. His PR folks should’ve drafted a letter or something explaining his inability to meet with the AIDS activists, and the controversy really would end there.
When Hillary put her foot in her mouth about the history of AIDS [at Nancy Regan’s funeral], I was angry. She apologized and has a great platform for HIV, so I forgave her. If people can be upset at Hillary for her ignorance, then people equally have a right to be upset about Bernie’s actions. Let him draft an appropriate apology and show people he’s serious about HIV. Hold your candidate to the same standards as I hold mine.
We already know where Sanders stands on HIV/AIDS. We know we will have incredible access in his administration. We know that his platforms are in remarkable alignment with what the AIDS movement has wanted for decades—
far better than any major candidate since the start of the epidemic. Bernie is already with us and has always been with us. Free universal health care. An appropriate response to pharmaceutical company price gouging. An end to criminalization. The list goes on and on.
Suckers bought Bernie. I’m glad you learned a lesson and dodged a real Bern. He knows nothing about HIV. He knows he won’t be the nominee.