Along with the distress associated with the diagnosis of a life-threatening disease, individuals with HIV also face huge social challenges based on reactions to their disease by other individuals and society. While there are numerous books covering research on risk of HIV infection and attitudes about the disease, limited empirical research on the social interaction process in coping with HIV exists. Carefully edited, HIV and Social Interaction explores the seropositive personÆs relationships with family, friends, intimate partners, and other members of his or her social network. The contributors present original theoretical models and research, derived from psychology and communication. Written with clarity, HIV and Social Interaction indicates how being HIV positive influences an individualÆs social interactions as well as interpersonal relationships. Chapters include the following topics:
+ The stigmatization of HIV and AIDS
+ Weighing the benefits and risks of self-disclosure about the HIV diagnosis
+ Accessing, finding, and maintaining quality social support
+ The value of group residence facilities for persons with AIDS
+ The effects of HIV on intimate relationships
+ The impact on volunteers who provide assistance to persons with AIDS
In addition, the chapter authors discuss implications of their work for interventions and assisting HIV positive individuals, members of their social networks, health providers, and social services providers.
A deeper understanding of these and related issues is vital for the comprehensive and empathetic delivery of services by healthcare professionals. HIV and Social Interaction is equally important for social scientists, students, as well as persons who are HIV-positive and anyone within their social network.