The role of the family in attributing meaning to living with HIV and its stigma in Turkey

Oktem, Pinar (2015) The role of the family in attributing meaning to living with HIV and its stigma in Turkey. SAGE Open, 5 (4). ISSN 2158-2440

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Stigma attached to HIV/AIDS remains a global problem, with severe negative consequences for people living with HIV (PLHIV). Family support is fundamental for PLHIV’s psychological and physical well-being. HIV-related stigma is high in Turkey, where HIV/AIDS prevalence is low and the epidemic is not considered a priority. Based on qualitative data generated with HIV-positive women and men, this article explores the process of stigmatization, as experienced and perceived by PLHIV in Turkey, focusing on the institution of the family. Results indicated that enacted stigma from family members is lower than anticipated. While most participants’ narratives showed patterns of support rather than rejection from families, the strong expectations around the cultural value attributed to “the family” are found to be the main facilitators of internalized stigma. The article critically discusses the meaning and implications of family support, addressing the role of patriarchal values attributed to womanhood, manhood, and sexuality in Turkey.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © The Author(s) 2015 This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (
Uncontrolled Keywords: sdg 3 - good health and well-being ,/dk/atira/pure/sustainabledevelopmentgoals/good_health_and_well_being
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Global Development (formerly School of International Development)
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2016 00:06
Last Modified: 20 Dec 2022 01:25
DOI: 10.1177/2158244015615165


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