ERIC Number: ED408521
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Aug-13
A Psychoanalytic Exploration of HIV Status Disclosure to Children.
Gold, Skye R.; Derevenco, Maria R.
As the AIDS epidemic grows, society is faced by a growing number of children who are born HIV infected. Unfortunately, little systematic research has been conducted which addresses the psychological and social ramifications of HIV status disclosure to children. While most parents prefer not to inform the child of the illness, most clinicians favor disclosure. Some of the issues and questions favoring disclosure are explored in this paper. Some of the questions addressed include "At what age is the child able to comprehend the facts of seropositive status?""How will disclosure affect the child psychologically?" and "How will disclosure affect the child's life and relationships in social settings?" Research shows that parents influence the psychological implications of disclosure; some of the barriers to disclosure include guilt and shame, the fear of social consequences, and the fear of death. Likewise, children's responses to disclosure are important to understand and such information must be viewed as a process. Some of the questions confronting researchers and parents when deciding whether or not to inform a child of his or her illness include, "What are the roles of this debate?" and "Is disclosure beneficial or not?" Contains 28 references. (RJM)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (104th, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, August 9-13, 1996).