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Couples Navigate Love and HIV

January 12, 2011

The number of HIV serodiscordant couples in the United States is growing. While these relationships underscore the power of love over fear, they also bear witness to the challenges of living with HIV, even three decades into the AIDS epidemic.

"I know more and more people who are choosing HIV-infected partners," said Lora Branch, former director of the STD/HIV division at the Chicago Department of Public Health. "It's not that unusual anymore."

Though it is not known how many HIV-positive people are in serodiscordant couples, a 2001 study in the journal Family Planning Perspectives offered some insight. It found that half the HIV-positive men and women surveyed about their desire to have children said their spouse was HIV-negative, according to Dr. Deborah Cohan, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at the University of California-San Francisco.

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