News & events


27 October 2017

How to tell your child you have HIV

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)

More than three decades into the HIV epidemic, some conversations haven’t become any easier. This is one of them.

Nokuthula* called her eldest daughter into her bedroom.

Her four kids often joked that this was her “courtroom”. Whenever somebody was beckoned, they knew they were in for a serious talking-to. “We’re going to court,” they would laugh.

But the house was quiet now. Nobody else was around.

Nokuthula and her then 21-year-old sat on the edge of the bed, a mountain of scatter cushions piled up behind them.

Nokuthula felt nervous, emotional. For 10 years she’d held on to the secret she was about to let out, and she had no idea how her firstborn — who had just started dating — would take it.

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Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC)