Journal of Urban Health

, Volume 83, Issue 4, pp 682–694 | Cite as

Perceptions Towards Condom Use, Sexual Activity, and HIV Disclosure among HIV-Positive African American Men Who Have Sex with Men: Implications for Heterosexual Transmission

  • Nina T. Harawa
  • John K. Williams
  • Hema Codathi Ramamurthi
  • Trista A. Bingham


Disproportionately high HIV/AIDS rates and frequent non-gay identification (NGI) among African American men who have sex with men or with both men and women (MSM/W) highlight the importance of understanding how HIV-positive African American MSM/W perceive safer sex, experience living with HIV, and decide to disclose their HIV status. Thirty predominately seropositive and non-gay identifying African American MSM/W in Los Angeles participated in three semi-structured focus group interviews, and a constant comparison method was used to analyze responses regarding condom use, sexual activity after an HIV diagnosis, and HIV serostatus disclosure. Condom use themes included its protective role against disease and pregnancy, acceptability concerns pertaining to aesthetic factors and effectiveness, and situational influences such as exchange sex, substance use, and suspicions from female partners. Themes regarding the impact of HIV on sexual activity included rejection, decreased partner seeking, and isolation. Serostatus disclosure themes included disclosure to selective partners and personal responsibility. Comprehensive HIV risk-reduction strategies that build social support networks, condom self-efficacy, communication skills, and a sense of collective responsibility among NGI African American MSM/W while addressing HIV stigma in the African American community as a whole are suggested.


African American MSM Condom use HIV disclosure Non-gay identification 


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Copyright information

© The New York Academy of Medicine 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nina T. Harawa
  • John K. Williams
    • 1
  • Hema Codathi Ramamurthi
  • Trista A. Bingham
  1. 1.Semel Institute of Neuroscience & Human BehaviorLos AngelesUSA

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