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3_Rier - HIV and Morality Online

3_Rier - HIV and Morality Online - The ethical dynamics of...

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The ethical dynamics of HIV+ status disclosure 1045 © 2007 The Author Journal compilation © 2007 Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness/Blackwell Publishing Ltd Disclosing seropositivity to a sexual partner implies that that partner, too (and that part- ner’s other partners) might be infected. Disclosure may cause rejection, and emotional and even physical abuse (Maman and Medley 2004). Yet disclosure can also bring emotional support, instrumental assistance, and relief at being able to be candid with friends and family (Greene et al. 2003, Klitzman and Bayer 2003). AIDS ‘risk-management’ decisions such as those involving disclosure are often emotionally fraught, placing trust, intimacy, and risk in tension with one another (Rhodes and Cusick 2000). Seropositives carefully weigh whom, when, and how to tell, and often experience disclosure as a process, not an event (Cusick and Rhodes 1999). As we will see below, relationship type and social setting can be significant influences on disclosure decisions.
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