Tag: Health

National Latino AIDS Awareness Day 2017

National Latino AIDS Awareness DayThe Latino Commission on AIDS (LCOA), the Hispanic Federation and many other organizations organize this day. The NLAAD campaign works annually at building capacity for non-profit organizations and health departments in order to reach Latino/Hispanic communities, promote HIV testing, and provide HIV prevention information and access to care. Oct 15th

National Latino AIDS Awareness Day


Seasons of Pride is pleased to present the Gay Pride or LGBTQ Pride Calendar for 2017.  You will find Gay Pride events, LGBT Film Festivals, and the Gay Travel Events like Gay Ski Weeks. We do our best to try and keep up with all the events, but sometimes we miss one or two.

If your event is not listed, just drop us an email to info@seasonsofpride.com

Bear | Business | CareerConferences | Europe | Film | Leather | Lesbian | Trans | Youth

2017 Pride Calendar

Jan – Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sept | Oct | Nov – Dec

National Latino AIDS Awareness Day

The post National Latino AIDS Awareness Day 2017 appeared first on Seasons of Pride.

Hardships in the LGBTQ+ Community Increase the Risk for Substance Abuse

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, researchers estimate that 20 to 30 percent of the LGBTQ+ community struggles with a substance use disorder — more than double the rate of the general population.

Hardships in the LGBTQ+ Community Increase the Risk for Substance Abuse

Those in the LGBTQ+ community face unique cultural, emotional and social challenges in regards to substance abuse. They also face difficult situations related to their family life, mental health, and sexual or gender identity.

Some LGBTQ+ individuals turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with these challenges. Drug and alcohol abuse is also prevalent in LGBTQ+ culture, especially in the social scene. This combination of factors places the community at a greater risk for developing a substance use disorder.

Stress at Home

LGBTQ+ youths often face problems at home that can create high levels of stress. One of the toughest challenges is fear of rejection when they come out to family members.

Some conversations with family about identity result in rejection, hate or even violence. In these situations, youths may be forced to run away from home, cut ties with family members or enter foster care.

According to a recent Los Angeles study, 13.6 percent of LGBQ youths and 5.6 percent of transgender youths are in foster care. These rates are significantly higher than those of the general youth population.

Rejection at home is linked to poor health outcomes once LGBTQ+ youths become adults. Researchers from San Francisco State University found that LGBTQ+ youth who face rejection from their family are 3.4 times more likely to use illegal drugs, 8.4 times more likely to report having attempted suicide and 5.9 percent more likely to report having high levels of depression.

Homophobia and Violence

Homophobia, discrimination and, violence toward LGBTQ+ youths are serious problems. Unfortunately, the resulting physical and emotional pain can drive individuals toward drugs or alcohol. According to the 2015 national Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 10 percent of the lesbian, gay and bisexual students surveyed were threatened or injured with a weapon at school. Additionally, 34 percent were bullied on school property, and 28 percent were bullied electronically.

Negative attitudes and discrimination can escalate to Bullying and violence. These experiences often cause lasting trauma, which may lead to the development of mental illnesses such as anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder and, addiction.

Resources for Addiction and Mental Health Challenges

LGBTQ+ people experience greater risks for mental health problems than the general population.

According to a study cited by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, women with same-sex partners experience more mental health disorders than women with opposite-sex partners. Gay men and bisexual people have higher rates of depression and anxiety than the general population.

The link between mental health and substance abuse has long been established. People often use drugs to cope with symptoms of their mental illness, an unhealthy choice that can lead to addiction. Also, drug use can exacerbate symptoms of mental health conditions.

More than 8 million American adults have co-occurring disorders, meaning a dual diagnosis of a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder, according to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Rates of co-occurring disorders are particularly high in the LGBTQ+ community.

Fortunately, support is available for people struggling with substance abuse and related mental health conditions. Psychotherapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy provide information and techniques that can help you cope with family or personal problems in a healthy and productive way.

In addition, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration provides numerous resources for LGBTQ+ people struggling with addiction. The administration’s treatment services locator lists facilities and organizations that offer programs catered to the unique needs of the LGBTQ+ community.

About the Author: Trey Dyer is a writer for DrugRehab.com and a strong supporter of LGBTQ+ rights and equality. When Trey is not working, he can be found fly fishing, bike riding or heading off to his next travel destination.

Sources:

 

Hardships in the LGBTQ+ Community Increase the Risk for Substance Abuse

The post Hardships in the LGBTQ+ Community Increase the Risk for Substance Abuse appeared first on Seasons of Pride.

STI Checks for Gay Men

Sex between men can be fun, vibrant and steamy, however, it should also be safe. While using condoms and being open and honest with sexual partners is a great step towards this goal, a powerful tool in the safe sex repertoire of the gay community is regular Sexually Transmitted Infection “STI” checks.  STIs are sexually transmitted diseases caused by bacteria, viruses or parasites that can be passed between sexual partners through contact with bodily fluids and infected areas.

STI Checks for Gay Men

Often they can have no symptoms and can cause a number of long-term health issues such as depressed immune systems, infertility, and erectile dysfunction.

Therefore, to stay free of anxiety and ensure that you are protected from disease anybody who is sexually active should have annual check-ups for common STIs.

Leading STIs include chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, herpes, HPV, syphilis, and trichomoniasis.

While the general impression is that STI checks are painful, long or expensive, modern medical practices have made them easy, accessible, quick and gay-friendly. The majority of STIs can be checked through a simple urine or blood sample, or a swab of the infected area:

  • Chlamydia: Swab of genital or urine sample.
  • Gonorrhea: Swab of genital or urine sample.
  • Genital herpes: Swab of affected area if symptoms are present, if not present a blood test.
  • Syphilis: Blood test or samples from a sore.
  • Trichomoniasis: Swab of the infected area, physical exam or sample of discharge.
  • HPV: Visual diagnosis.

Getting tested for HIV has become even easier, clinics have been set up around New South Wales for men who have sex with men for free HIV testing. These tests are confidential and results can be released to you within 30 minutes of taking a test!

You can even set up a reminder to take the test every 6 months, or every 3 months if you have more than 10 partners in a 6 month period or are actively engaging in sex without a condom. HIV tests can be a blood test or swab from the inside of the mouth.

All of these STI can usually be checked at your normal medical center. A test for all seven of these common STIs can take as little as 15 minutes at the doctor and most practices in Australia can bulk bill the session, meaning that the government will pay the total cost of the STI checks.

It’s free, it’s simple and it’s quick, meaning there really is no excuse not to do it!

It is also very important to engage in a conversation with your partners about your STI status and the last time you were tested. This allows you to make informed choices about how you might approach sex with your partner, the importance of using a condom and even personal preferences. Plus, it is always easier to do something when the experience is shared. So an open, honest dialogue based on trust can be a great way to understand the position of each person and discuss what you can do to make your sex safe and fun!

STI Checks for Gay Men

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PrEP is Effective

On Behalf of Dan Wohlfeiler
PrEP is Effective

All,
As most of you know. I’ve been working closely with the dating site,  Daddyhunt, to produce a web series that incorporates a storyline on PrEP, STDs, having an undetectable viral load, and condoms.  Taking advantage of the fact that the cast was all there, we made five PSAs (with input from many of you) encouraging gay men to make the choice of strategies that’s right for them, in addition to getting tested.

The first PSA, “The Right Choice,” has gotten 125,000 views between Facebook and YouTube in the first ten days. The second one, “PrEP is Effective,” has just been up for two hours and has gotten about 2000 views.

You can find all the links and more background information here:
Links to specific PSA’s:
“The Right Choice”
“PrEP is Effective”
The YouTube versions are close-captioned in both Spanish and English (find the small gear-wheel on the lower right of the screen to change your settings).
Please consider sharing links with colleagues, friends, on Facebook, and via your own lists. More PSAs will be coming out in the coming weeks. While we’re particularly interested in getting “PrEP is Effective” out there, since it’s brand new, if you have time to forward both PSAs, that’d be even better.
I’m happy to answer any questions, of course.
Thanks very much.
To your health – and to all of ours,
Dan
Dan Wohlfeiler
Director, Building Healthy Online Communities

PrEP is Effective

The post PrEP is Effective appeared first on Seasons of Pride.

You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist

You Go First: Why It's Hard To Start Seeing A TherapistWe all have had personal experience with either being reluctant to go see a therapist ourselves or living with the frustration involved when someone we love drags his or her feet at the prospect of “getting some help,” as we like to say. What makes it so painfully difficult to reach out for counseling? Bad information is often involved. I’d like to address some widespread myths that get in the way:

MYTH: Therapy doesn’t do anything that a chat with my best friend couldn’t do, so why bother?

TRUTH: While friendships are important for everyone, they are not the same as therapy. Therapy is designed to help you see what it is not possible for you to see for yourself, in an objective and caring environment in which you don’t have the burden of having to work to keep the other person engaged and paying attention.

LGBT Healthcare and Resources

MYTH: I’m not as messed up as my spouse/child/parent. Why should I be the one to get therapy?

TRUTH: Life is not a contest over who should be the first to do the right thing. Therapy is for people intelligent and courageous enough to realize that there is no way we can be completely objective about ourselves. (Einstein helped us figure that one out with his theory of relativity.) When something is obviously keeping you from firing on all cylinders in your relationship with yourself or with the significant people in your life, it is a clear signal suggesting that it may be time to seek counseling.

Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists

The Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists (AGLP) is a professional organization of psychiatrists, psychiatry residents, and medical students which serves as a voice for the concerns of lesbians and gay men within the psychiatric community.

http://aglp.org/

MYTH: I don’t want to spend the money.

TRUTH: In the first place, the cost might be covered by health insurance, and there are low-cost options available in most communities. But why would you not want to spend money on something that is likely to make your life better – possibly way better? Are you waiting for someone else to do that for you? Reluctance to pay for therapy just because you don’t like to part with your money can be a smokescreen to hide your worries about meeting the unknown in your own mind and about truly facing the reality of your life.  Therapists are trained to make that process a reasonable one for you. Therapy helps you grow up, no matter what your chronological age is.

MYTH: Once you start therapy, it never ends. Just look at Woody Allen and his never-ending analysis.

TRUTH: Competent therapy has a beginning, middle, and end. Most often I work from a psychoanalytic framework, which generally does take a long time. However, the process might usefully be thought of as rewiring parts of the brain – not a quick task. But my expectation for every patient is that we will indeed one day say goodbye because we will have cured the problems the patient came for help with. (That is one difference between analytic therapy and supportive therapy.)

MYTH: I don’t have time for therapy.

TRUTH: You might want to poll the people who love you before you go with that; they might want to ask you exactly what you think is more important to spend your time doing than improving your relationship with them. If we only have so much time on Planet Earth, doesn’t it make sense to get help sooner rather than later, especially if it means the help may improve your whole life?

MYTH: There’s no way to know if a particular therapist can be trusted.

TRUTH: Any career attracts a few bad apples. However, the psychotherapy field is full of competent, kind, highly-educated professionals with skills to help you. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out if a particular therapist is a good match for you. Are they licensed? Has their license been suspended at any point? Do they belong to the professional organization of their license (e.g. the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists)? Were they referred by someone you have reason to respect? Does their office convey a sense of professionalism? Do they demonstrate respect for your time? Are they clear about fees?  Do they refrain from using your time to tell you about their personal lives? Do they make it clear that therapy takes place under strictly professional standards? Are they focused on listening to you? Are you comfortable talking with them?

MYTH: I should be able to figure things out myself without professional help.

TRUTH: Is that what you tell yourself when your car needs a tune-up? If your roof is leaking and needs attention, do you berate yourself for not fixing it yourself? Do you cut your own hair? Some things just can’t be done well by even the best intentioned untrained person. Therapy falls into that category. There is no shame in having problems – it’s part of being human. The shame is in letting matters fester, rather than call a therapist. Even therapists need therapists at some points.

You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist

The post You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist appeared first on Seasons of Pride.

You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist

You Go First: Why It's Hard To Start Seeing A TherapistWe all have had personal experience with either being reluctant to go see a therapist ourselves or living with the frustration involved when someone we love drags his or her feet at the prospect of “getting some help,” as we like to say. What makes it so painfully difficult to reach out for counseling? Bad information is often involved. I’d like to address some widespread myths that get in the way:

MYTH: Therapy doesn’t do anything that a chat with my best friend couldn’t do, so why bother?

TRUTH: While friendships are important for everyone, they are not the same as therapy. Therapy is designed to help you see what it is not possible for you to see for yourself, in an objective and caring environment in which you don’t have the burden of having to work to keep the other person engaged and paying attention.

LGBT Healthcare and Resources

MYTH: I’m not as messed up as my spouse/child/parent. Why should I be the one to get therapy?

TRUTH: Life is not a contest over who should be the first to do the right thing. Therapy is for people intelligent and courageous enough to realize that there is no way we can be completely objective about ourselves. (Einstein helped us figure that one out with his theory of relativity.) When something is obviously keeping you from firing on all cylinders in your relationship with yourself or with the significant people in your life, it is a clear signal suggesting that it may be time to seek counseling.

Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists

The Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists (AGLP) is a professional organization of psychiatrists, psychiatry residents, and medical students which serves as a voice for the concerns of lesbians and gay men within the psychiatric community.

http://aglp.org/

MYTH: I don’t want to spend the money.

TRUTH: In the first place, the cost might be covered by health insurance, and there are low-cost options available in most communities. But why would you not want to spend money on something that is likely to make your life better – possibly way better? Are you waiting for someone else to do that for you? Reluctance to pay for therapy just because you don’t like to part with your money can be a smokescreen to hide your worries about meeting the unknown in your own mind and about truly facing the reality of your life.  Therapists are trained to make that process a reasonable one for you. Therapy helps you grow up, no matter what your chronological age is.

MYTH: Once you start therapy, it never ends. Just look at Woody Allen and his never-ending analysis.

TRUTH: Competent therapy has a beginning, middle, and end. Most often I work from a psychoanalytic framework, which generally does take a long time. However, the process might usefully be thought of as rewiring parts of the brain – not a quick task. But my expectation for every patient is that we will indeed one day say goodbye because we will have cured the problems the patient came for help with. (That is one difference between analytic therapy and supportive therapy.)

MYTH: I don’t have time for therapy.

TRUTH: You might want to poll the people who love you before you go with that; they might want to ask you exactly what you think is more important to spend your time doing than improving your relationship with them. If we only have so much time on Planet Earth, doesn’t it make sense to get help sooner rather than later, especially if it means the help may improve your whole life?

MYTH: There’s no way to know if a particular therapist can be trusted.

TRUTH: Any career attracts a few bad apples. However, the psychotherapy field is full of competent, kind, highly-educated professionals with skills to help you. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out if a particular therapist is a good match for you. Are they licensed? Has their license been suspended at any point? Do they belong to the professional organization of their license (e.g. the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists)? Were they referred by someone you have reason to respect? Does their office convey a sense of professionalism? Do they demonstrate respect for your time? Are they clear about fees?  Do they refrain from using your time to tell you about their personal lives? Do they make it clear that therapy takes place under strictly professional standards? Are they focused on listening to you? Are you comfortable talking with them?

MYTH: I should be able to figure things out myself without professional help.

TRUTH: Is that what you tell yourself when your car needs a tune-up? If your roof is leaking and needs attention, do you berate yourself for not fixing it yourself? Do you cut your own hair? Some things just can’t be done well by even the best intentioned untrained person. Therapy falls into that category. There is no shame in having problems – it’s part of being human. The shame is in letting matters fester, rather than call a therapist. Even therapists need therapists at some points.

You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist

The post You Go First: Why It’s Hard To Start Seeing A Therapist appeared first on Seasons of Pride.

Ten Thing That Are Keeping You From Being A Super Hero At Work

If you’re wondering why you’re no super hero at work, it’s probably down to the things you do the night before… And no we don’t mean that lad from Grindr… The average Brit is ‘at their best’ for just four-and-a-half hours a day, new research reveals. Tiredness, energy slumps and constant distractions from the internet […]

The post Ten Thing That Are Keeping You From Being A Super Hero At Work appeared first on The Gay UK.

THE DILEMMAS | My Straight Mate Keeps Coming On To Me

This week a reader asks what he should do about a straight mate who keeps coming on to him. We asked our community of writers what they thought. Dear TGUK My straight work mate keeps coming on to me… We’ve been hanging around lots and lots and he’s actually pretty cool with me being gay and […]

The post THE DILEMMAS | My Straight Mate Keeps Coming On To Me appeared first on The Gay UK.

As A Gay Man Can I Donate Bone Marrow?

This week our legal expert Matt Parr answers a question about Bone Marrow Donation for gay men in the United Kingdom. Dear Matt, I know that gay men can’t currently give blood – but I was wondering about bone marrow. If someone in my family was to need my bone marrow for surgery can I […]

The post As A Gay Man Can I Donate Bone Marrow? appeared first on The Gay UK.

COMMENT | Truly Madly Deeply

Roses are red violets are blue if you’re not sane and sorted no one’s gonna f*ck you! Maybe I was blissfully unaware, growing up as a teen in the 90s, but the only ‘type’ of gays I was aware of – were lesbians, gays, bisexuals and non-gays/straight. It never occurred to me to categorize them […]

The post COMMENT | Truly Madly Deeply appeared first on The Gay UK.

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