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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Issues in Mental Health Nursing
Title “You comfort yourself and believe in yourself”: Exploring lived experiences of stigma in HIV-positive Kenyan women
Volume 34
Issue 3
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2013
Page numbers 150-157
URL http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.3109/01612840.2012.740765
HIV-related stigma has a negative effect on women's health and can hinder interventions aimed at eradicating HIV. In Kenya, women withstand the worst of HIV-related stigma, because they are the most affected. In this longitudinal qualitative study, we explored experiences of stigma among 54 HIV-positive Kenyan women. Using Goffman's stigma definition and Foucault's social construction of stigma to analyze women's narratives, two main themes emerged: (1) women's experience of socially constructed HIV-related stigma and (2) women's resistance of socially constructed HIV-related stigma. Even though women are creative in resisting HIV-related stigma, psychological impact of stigma can hinder HIV prevention, care, treatment, and support. Interventions that empower women are critical in reducing HIV-related stigma.

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