#WorldAIDSday: Gabby Greenwave turned down a man after he refused to disclose his status. We should all be like Gabby.
HIV/ AIDS is one of those things that I want everyone to be aware. That virus is no joke and it doesn't discriminate. While you are being aware of the virus, you should act on it too. Educate yourself and be there for those who have it because they have lost control of their bodies and health and they need your help. Since it can happen to anyone, please don't discriminate. What you can do is ask your to be lovers to get tested like Gabby and safe sex is the best sex.
#ReginahsrunwayPeople will want to know anything and everything as they get to know each other but will become shy when it comes to talking about protection. Can we talk about the importance of being transparent when it comes to safe sex?
@GreenwaveGabby: I feel as though sex is the most transparent you can be with a person. How much more open with a man can I be by sharing my intimacy and body with him? I think people miss that realization. And thus, they think it is, I guess, PRYING to speak about sexual history. I think that transparency in that area is often mistaken for distrust and malice. But it is the highest level of respect you can have for a potential partner.
#ReginahsrunwayWhat advice do you have for someone who might be afraid to be as bold as you were because they “don't want to lose” the person interested?
@GreenwaveGabby: I wouldn't say that I am bold (lol) On my previous account, people would send me death threats and rape threats and made fun of my dead parents. All types of awful things. Social media toughens you up and you just get numb to others’ opinions. But I don't think what I did was special or bold. WIth that being said, my advice for anyone else would be to be true to yourself. I have always wanted to live a purposeful life. Anyone can make a difference. If I have to endure being called a “hoe” and “dirty” and laughed at on Twitter just so at least one person can silently gather enough courage to put their health first and demand respect for their bodies, I think it's worth it to fulfill purpose.
#Reginahsrunway: Why is it that a lot of people do not want to get tested?
@GreenwaveGabby: That’s a complicated question. I asked my boss and my Epidemiology professor for the same question. Both of them said “stigma.” We live in a society where sex is still very taboo. Even though men have much more sexual freedom in the eyes of society, NO ONE likes to talk about the practicalities of sex. Knowing your status is a heavy responsibility because then you have to ACT depending on the results. People have to be notified, decisions have to be mad, medicine has to be distributed, follow ups are often done, and and all in all of that you have the internal shame many people feel. I am pursuing a PhD in HIV?STI infectious disease epidemiology at Tulane UNiversity School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine in New Orleans. NOLA is the #1 city for HIV. I see the consequences of that label almost everyday at my job as a medical researcher. The real world consequences are often too much to handle so they choose not to handle it at all.
#Reginahsrunway: What made you get your PhD in HIV/STI infection?
@GreenwaveGabby: Public health was always my destiny. My birth mother died of colon cancer. My adoptive father died of head and neck cancer. I take care of my elderly adoptive mother who had to relearn how to walk from rheumatoid arthritis and has 3 bypass surgeries. SO the care of others was just in my nature. However, in undergrad I was majoring in biological scinces and chemistry. I them became very fascinated with viruses. There’s been much debate as late about whether they are living beings or not. Also, I have always been fascinated at the intricacy of HIV. t’s sophiscated retrovirus and one of the deadliest diseases in the history of mankind. Being a Black woman and realizing that Black women are the highest at risk for the disease I just wanted to use my talents to make a difference in the arena.