Embracing the Reproductive Rights of HIV-affected Couples: It's Time

September 19, 2014 7:30 PM

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Embracing the Reproductive Rights of HIV-affected Couples: It's Time

Pinned to the bulletin board over my desk is a birth announcement with stunning photos and the quote, "I prayed for this child and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him - 1 Samuel 1:27." Next to it is a card with a photo of a couple embracing and the words, "Thank you for believing in us." Then a black and white photograph my teen daughter took at a first birthday party, chubby baby arms grabbing at the birthday cake on the highchair tray. These mementos give me goose bumps. Witnessing someone's dream come true is a gift. I once joined a couple and their baby. As the parents ate their salad amongst the bustle of San Francisco's financial district lunch crowd and took turns holding the baby, I looked around wishing everyone could perceive this great love. I wondered what it is like to be this child -- to grow up having been so wanted, so planned for, so desired.

While condoms have been the gold-standard HIV prevention method, when HIV-affected couples want to have a baby, they must necessarily consider other options, weighing the risk of possible HIV transmission with their natural desires to have a child. Assisted reproductive technologies, such as sperm w...

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