• Article

A qualitative analysis of male couples' coping with HIV


Gamarel, K. E., Comfort, M., Wood, T., Neilands, T. B., & Johnson, M. O. (2016). A qualitative analysis of male couples' coping with HIV: Disentangling the "we". Journal of Health Psychology, 21(10), 2125-2137. DOI: 10.1177/1359105315571975

Research suggests that optimal couple functioning depends on adopting a we orientation to health. Using qualitative data from 20 male couples in which at least one partner was HIV-positive, we examined how couples viewed their health involvement and its relation to social support. One group described their health as highly interconnected; in a second group, at least one partner viewed health as a personal responsibility. Results revealed that there was not a uniform we approach toward health; rather, sero-concordance, sero-discordance, and coping with other chronic illnesses strongly contributed to orientations toward health. Orientations toward health were not found to determine social support.