chapter  15
18 Pages

Couples Negotiating Safer Sex Behaviors: A Meta-Analysis of the Impact of Conversation and Gender

In 1981, AIDS was first diagnosed in the United States. Since then, more than 250,000 Americans have died of AIDS and by the year 2000 it was estimated that 40 million people worldwide would be diagnosed as HIV positive [CDC], 1994. HIV represents a potentially fatal health risk for every sexually active person in the world.1 Fortunately, until a cure or vaccine is found, an individual’s risk of HIV infection due to sexual transmission can be greatly reduced through the use of condoms. Despite the effectiveness of consistent and careful condom use, many sexually active Americans are still engaging in unprotected sexual activities. Bruce, Shrum, Trefethen, and Slovik (1990) indicated that 97% of young adults are knowledgeable about HIV and how to curtail transmission but many persons still engage in risky sexual behaviors.