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Intimacy Problem w/ my Partner

Jan 11, 2009

Is it common for people who are HIV+ to (because of contracting HIV through sex) subconciously view sex as being wrong, and therefore lose sexual desire for someone they develop an emotional connection with?

I have been seeing my HIV+ boyfriend now for nearly four months. Lately, we have been having less and less intimacy in our relationship, so I spoke with him about it, and he says that he has been feeling more and more guilty about sex. He has also told me that he has had little experience outside of casual sex. Naturally, I need sex in my relationship - is this something that we can work on, or is it best for me to end the relationship? I am really starting to love this guy, and he continues to tell me how much I mean to him. I'm having a tough time deciding what to do. Is this common? I'm patient and willing to give him time, but only if it's something that can be solved.

Response from Dr. Horwath

Many people (both with and without HIV) have problems with intimacy and sexual feelings. Guilt is sometimes involved, but there are a variety of possible causes, both psychological and biological. The fact that he has only had casual sex suggests that he may have some difficulty establishing more intimate emotional relationships. He should seek some psychological counseling. It may help him get past this problem.

Thrush without HIV
should I be worried?

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