Being Real About ARVs

Posted on: 4th August 2014

This week at Teen Spirit we were thinking about HIV medication. At Body & Soul, we’re committed to supporting young people living with HIV to understand the way that their medicines work; to finding ways that they can continue to take their medication correctly; to staying informed and staying active through the pursuit of healthy lifestyles.

We know that providing a space to express the feelings associated with taking medication every day, with people your own age who are in a similar position is vital in being realistic about living positively with a lifelong condition.

At Teen Spirit we provide 1:1 peer support for members struggling with taking their treatment or those with questions about family members’ health. Life is full of ups and downs and we’d rather know what’s really going on, after all admitting how hard life can be is the first step to making it better.

During the workshop this week, we asked members to share their thoughts on taking medication and some strategies for successfully taking their treatment to schedule. Here’s what they said:

‘I hate taking it every day.’

‘I’m fed up with taking the same meds!!’

‘I take pills everyday why they won’t end, I don’t know’

‘I’ve gradually gotten used to it’

‘They are helpful. Life saving’

‘Think of happy thoughts instead of being stressed.’

‘Face the truth with confidence. Don’t hide from it.’

‘A lot of effort to take the meds.’

‘Annoying, difficult’

‘Somehow I feel powerful.’

‘I feel different.’

‘Constant. Long. Monotonous. Sometimes it feels like a violation’

‘Thank-you for the accessibility of good medication in this country.’


‘It’s just daily life’

Teen Spirit has produced a graphic novel, This is how we do it where young people living with HIV can share their strategies for successfully adhering to their HIV treatment.

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