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Divorce, Stress, HIV… and no jokes.

This is a rather personal blog video, there’s no doubt about that. I’m even a little apprehensive because it doesn’t offer the usual helpful tips or the “entertainment value” of my other videos. But one of my problems has always been trying to be the life of the party when I’m not feeling it. So please allow me to offer you a different Mark than you might be used to, unplugged and exposed.

The last few weeks have been tough, I won’t lie to you. My nine-year relationship came to an end, and I’ve found myself feeling some self pity and fear ” that is, when I slow down long enough to catch up with my own emotions.

My schedule has been fast and furious, and now things are even busier as I make plans related to the breakup. In January, I will return to my beloved Atlanta, where a strong support network of friends awaits me with open arms.

Mark and DavidUntil then, I’m lucky to have friends like David Fawcett (seated at right, in our silly video opening), who also happens to be a therapist. Everyone should have a friend who’s a mental health counselor, if you ask me. David serves as one of the panel of experts at TheBody.com, as well as writing his own blog with helpful messages related to our emotional well being.

In this, the newest video episode of My Fabulous Disease, David and I sit down for a very candid talk about my fears and even some of my unhealthy thought patterns, some of which have been with me for a very long time.

Thanks for watching, my friends, and please be well.



Mason WylerCan someone be a self-described “sex addict” porn star and also a role model? Well, I won’t be nominating Mason Wyler for a GLAAD award this year, but I do appreciate the fact that he is candidly discussing his sex life as a man living with HIV. In an interview on PositiveLite.com by Bob Leahy, Wyler is casual about his newly acquired HIV status, and doesn’t believe there’s any connection between watching bareback porn and actually doing it (excluding, well, himself I suppose, since he admittedly likes “nasty bareback sex”). “Porn is a form of entertainment,” says Wyler. “It doesn’t and shouldn’t have any more influence on someone’s actions than say… music, movies, or video games. I think most guys participate in bareback sex in some capacity regardless of what porn they watch. We’re only human.”

Frank remarks like that one have won over some people. Writer Michael Burtch, in a July 2011 opinion piece, said this about the porn actor. “Mason Wyler has quickly become one of my favorite, openly HIV+ porn stars. When he writes ‘I don’t need someone to talk to, I need someone to fuck me’ on his blog or summons up the complexities of HIV by succinctly stating ‘it sucks.’ I totally get where he’s coming from and toast his post-AIDS sensibility.”




  1. Joe November 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    Thanks Mark & Dr David. Humor and being vulnerable are definitely a part of recovery and grief… thanks for this!!!

  2. Bradley Marema November 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm


    Thank you so much for sharing those intimate things about yourself. Listening to you talk about your feelings like “I’ve lost my last best chance at having a relationship” and the insecurities involved in dating and being alone and the list goes on. I have them all and I just want to say thank you for sharing your feelings because it allowed me to identify more clearly what it is that is blocking me from allowing myself to be open to a relationship again. I dont know if I told you but my husband whom I got married to in Ontario back in 2003 died of AIDS in 2005 and I’m still single although I was a mess up until I got sober a year and a half ago. My point is I guess is that I’m feeling this pressure to open myself up to dating and I dont even know how to date. I have had 3 long term relationships in my life one was 8yrs one was 7 and then my last ended in his death and we were only together for 3yrs. But I fell right from one relationship right into another and now I dont feel like I have chance in hell with anyone. I look at guys these days and say oh yeah right he’s really gonna want me NOT!! I guess I need to start by putting more value on myself. I also use excuses like, a relationship will interfere with my recovery or I’m too busy with school for a relationship and I dont even know how to date and i’m 44yrs old. I dont know i’m just glad that you shared that with me it helps alot. Thank you,

  3. Boston Rich November 3, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    Mark honey, I really like your shrink, he makes a lot of sense. Listen to him and you’ll do well. You ARE enough and there IS enough. One word of advice from me, a fan of your blog, beware the “rebound” relationship, they can be very soul destroying. Be careful and don’t jump again too soon.

    I should not have to remind a smart boy like you the words of Auntie Mame “life is a banquet …” you know the rest.

    You’ve made it this far and now you’re going home. You’ll be fine.

    Also one funny result from your video, when you were listing what you’re grateful for, I had to reply several times because I swear you said “I’m grateful I’m not a CHRISTIAN meth head anymore…” That gave me a chuckle even thought I now realize you said CRYSTAL but it got jumbled in cyber translation, must be my computer speaker.

    As always THANK YOU for your work and sharing. All us fans can relate to everything you’re going through. Xxxoo

  4. Maria Mejia November 3, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    What a deep video! and you will make it through! much love and light to you!

  5. Bobby November 3, 2011 at 11:52 pm

    Mark King:
    I hope your friends in Atlanta smother you with love. How wonderful to have that Hotlanta support system awaiting your return!
    Thus begins another chapter. Book?

  6. James Allen November 4, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Oh man that most certainly did give helpful hints which dovetail with recovery. I heard acceptance, acceptance of who we are and of where we are and of living in the present, not 10 steps out like I tend to do. I also heard a pretty good helping of gratitude from you which is fantastically healthy. I am grateful I have a friend who has the stones to put his anxieties in check in order to give us all a continuing dose of weekly healing. Thanks friend. I am excited about your move back to Atlanta and can’t wait to read about that as well.

  7. Tari November 4, 2011 at 3:11 am

    Hi Mark,

    It’s always such a treat when I get a note that you have a new post, or video. I always look forward to what you have to say, and I take it to heart.

    I really like what both you and your therapist Dave had to say. Objectively speaking, just from what I’ve seen from watching your blog over some time, You have many gifts, one of them being a pinpoint of self awareness, as well as being able to sus out your personal “roadblocks”, and figure out a strategy to move through them.(You made it through Meth Addiction, and came out stronger on the other side… that’s no small feat). I understand your feelings regarding those who can be “Pissed off” and you know it, I’m the same way.

    If this lends any help, I’ll be thrilled, but one thing I’ve learned, is the power of time on it’s own. Time and space, and things seem to “Unknot” on their own when We’re not looking.

    I see only great things for you in the future. And you’ll find the man of your dreams in the right time. My feeling is that in time this bit of “singularity” will come to be a temporary respite here you can explore the world solely on your terms. But no worries. you are a catch, and the right man will come along in due time.

    We’re watching out for you-


  8. George November 4, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Thanks Mark for being so candid and real. Breakups are hard and help is always appreciated. As David Fawcett said, trying to make one whole out of two halves doesn’t work in relationships. Two whole people are required. That in itself is herculean task in our scattered subculture. So my work to create a grounded, confident, complete person with good self esteem goes on (thank you Louise Hay). When I’ve accomplished that, the laws of attraction will do the rest.

  9. Mark Ketcham November 4, 2011 at 10:34 am

    And remember, you have a lot of people pulling for you….

  10. Ron November 4, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Hey Mark,
    You make a big difference in many lives that you have touched. Get on the cruise ship and just let go and have fun.

  11. nelson November 4, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    Mark, You are a great guy and you have a gift. Just keep helping others with your stories and let things ride for the mean while. You will attract the right people and new doors will open.
    I read somewhere: some relationships do not end, they just evolve. I have no doubt that you will be OK! Just be careful about the rebound!

  12. Mommie Dammit November 5, 2011 at 2:04 am

    Mark, darling, you know the phrase as well as I do – as well as anyone in recovery does: “You can’t love another until you can love yourself…” or some such drivel. I thought it just another recovery catchphrase until the explosion that ended my last relationship. Now I know better, and it took me a long time to reach that point.
    Listen to the good Doctor, and be gentle and patient with yourself. I only know you through your blog, but I can see a wonderful man under all the lipstick and brow pencil. I also see in the video some very good self awareness working in your favor. Keep it. Expand it. It works wonders, believe me. And never fear, should you find yourself slipping Mommie Dammit can always come to … oh, what was the name of that sweaty place you’re moving to?… someplace in Georgia… Magnolias, mint juleps, sweaty disco boys… ATLANTA! That was it! Now where the hell was I going with this… hold on, the Stoli’s bubbling… damn. Senility is a wonderful thing.
    Take your own advice, Mark… be well. Be sane, be happy, and be well.

  13. jeremy November 5, 2011 at 2:32 am


    “I’m afraid of being alone or lonely.” Make sure you surround yourself with people who lift you up and bring light into your life.

    My one great concern for you is that you use any substance. Clean time and steps are really important. Focusing on what makes you YOU. It’s time to lean on your friends who know you best for they can be mirrors for you.

    I like all the advice you got. Time. Give yourself time. Be gentle with yourself. All that dating shit is for later down the road. Maybe you need this time to get to know you and who you are today. You’ve grown up and maybe you need to focus on you and what the next incarnation of your life you are going to move into. I know, we aren’t spring chickens and the pickings might be slim, they say in the program that if you work on you, when you are ready from the inside out, your next relationship will make itself known. There is no rush to go out and find Mr. Right or Mr. Right now.

    Stay off the dating sites until you know who you are now. How many honest men can be found on a gay dating site? FEW!

    Atlanta will offer you bigger and better things. Just be honest about who you are in all things, and take it one day at a time.

    I feel for you. I don’t know what i would do if I found myself alone and single at 44. I really don’t… So keep us posted.

    A little Oprah never hurt anyone either…
    Maybe you need a little JOY RISING !!!


  14. Dee Britton November 5, 2011 at 7:28 am

    Hey Mark,
    I am a first time visitor to your site.
    Thanks so much for sharing such an awesome post and so much of yourself and what is going on in your life.
    The first step to moving forward is acknowledging what is happening to yourself. I am sure that everything will work out for you, just stay positive and be grateful. You need to love yourself first before you can ever be truly loved.
    Dream big.
    Dee 🙂

  15. Anthony November 5, 2011 at 11:10 am


    Sorry to hear the news. You’re a great guy. Be gentle and kind to yourself. Great video.

  16. Subversive Librarian November 5, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    I’m so glad I got to see this video, Mark. David sounds like a great therapist. Listen to him.

    I did the rebound thing and it just about killed me. Problem is, I thought I was being careful, I thought I had given it enough time, and I thought I knew what I was doing. Turns out recovering from a relationship is a looooooong, slooooooooooooooow process. I didn’t know what I didn’t know.

    Please stop with the quality work already. You’re making all of rest of us hacks look bad.

  17. Sue November 6, 2011 at 10:41 am

    I love you happy or sad!!! Oh, and great hair cut.

  18. Sam November 6, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    My comment is about Michael Burtch’s opinion piece and Mason Wlyer’s comments about the porn industry. First, I totally get where Burtch is coming from when he discusses the hypocrisy of the porn movement in regards to the HIV virus. No doubt, many in the porn industry skirt the issue completely while simultaneously refusing to work with anyone who has tested positive. I also like the honesty of Mason Wyler when he talks about not being a victim of disease. These people have opinions and share them, knowing as they share that many people will disagree with them. I certainly disagree with Wyler when he says porn does not really influence the lives of those who watch it. Really. Is he serious? The movies and TV shows and porn we watch have no impact on our lives and our perceptions of ourselves and the world we live in?

    When Burtch shows outrage at the hypocrisy of the porn industry in dealing with HIV issues he certainly makes a good point. My outrage is a bit different. To make this as quick as possible I’ll just say that if it is illegal for 18 year old Americans to buy and drink alcohol, why is legal for 18 year old Americans to be “actors” in hardcorn porn? To me this is proof of how screwed up our priorities are. The exploitation of young people in the porn industry is to me immoral and this is why I only look at porn that features adults who are obviously well into their 20s and 30s.

    Too many people in the porn industry are unscrupulous individuals who are leaving walking corpses in their wake, and I am not talking about AIDS here. I am talking about the many young men and women who by the time they are 21 are suffering from the negative after-shocks of having done porn when they were too young to make an informed decision.

    There are some excellent documentaries about the porn industry. What shocked me the most is the violence toward women and how that is becoming more and more what people want to see. Experts say that this is changing how we see ourselves. What we watch, they say, can easily become what we begin to desire to do.

    To me, if you are looking at porn and it makes you feel uneasy then perhaps you are looking at something that isn’t good for you to see.

    Of couse, if all you want to do is get a nut, and you are unconcerned with the people making the porn, then who cares? right. Those people are not real then. They’re just images on a screen.

  19. Bob Reynolds November 7, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Good Luck on your new adventure.

    I was your age when I first met my partner. He is 22 years younger and totally different from anyone that I loved in the past and was my first real experience dealing with addiction. Love has prevailed for almost 20 years now. It is not easy as David says and I am sure you already know. You have already learned to be open about yourself. It appears that you are an open book–only you know if that is true. I was not. I am honest-with others and myself fundamentally-but not always in expressing my feelings with others. I note that you have a talent of making others laugh–that may be a mask to cover up what is going on inside. I tend to be serious and intense and know that many people are intimidated by the intensity. I do not mean to “scare” them off==it is just me. I want their approval, but I just can’t help myself once I get going. Friends understand our intricacies, but may find it hard to get to that status. I still cannot understand addiction, but will tolerate the swings so long as it does not harm our relationship. It took me a long time to establish workable bounderies ( how ever it spelled) and to convey that I am able and willing to walk if pushed to far. That was really hard.

    You have a talent to help others, now it is time to help Mark.

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