, Volume 15, Issue 6, pp 1233-1242
Date: 17 Aug 2010

Religion, Relationships and Reproduction: Correlates of Desire for a Child Among Mothers Living with HIV

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Despite challenges facing HIV-positive women in the U.S., some maintain strong desires and intentions for motherhood. We explore correlates of desire for another child—particularly current parenting experiences (number of children, parenting efficacy, parenting satisfaction, parenting practices, parental distress, and child-related quality of life), age, spirituality/religiosity, stress, coping, hopelessness, partner’s desire for a child, social support, and stigma—among a sample of HIV-positive mothers (n = 96) in Alabama. Partner’s desire for a child, participation in private religious practices, avoidant coping, and parity were significantly associated with desire for a child in multivariate models. Such findings indicate a need for reproductive counseling and education that is sensitive to the role of religious norms and values in fertility decision-making and suggest opportunities for partnership with faith-based organizations. Further studies examining the impact of relationship dynamics on childbearing desires among U.S. women living with HIV/AIDS are also needed.