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Open Access Publications from the University of California

"Holidays Come, Sundays Come. It is Very Sad to be Alone": Transnational Practices and the Importance of Family for Mexican and Puerto Rican Latinxs Living with HIV in the Continental U.S.

  • Author(s): Maiorana, Andres
  • Zamudio-Haas, Sophia
  • Sauceda, John
  • Rodriguez-Díaz, Carlos E
  • Brooks, Ronald A
  • Santiago-Rodríguez, Edda
  • Myers, Janet J
  • et al.

Latinxs continue to be overrepresented in the U.S. HIV epidemic. We examined the transnational practices, family relationships, and realities of life of Mexicans and Puerto Ricans living with HIV in the continental U.S. We conducted qualitative interviews with 44 persons of Mexican and Puerto Rican origin participating in HIV care engagement interventions. Framework Analysis guided our data analysis. Among participants, a strong connection to the family was intertwined with transnational practices: communication, travel to their place of origin to maintain family ties, and material and/or emotional support. Separation from their family contributed to social isolation. Many participants lacked emotional support regarding living with HIV. Transnational practices and family relationships were intrinsic to the experiences of Mexicans and Puerto Ricans living with HIV in the continental U.S.; and may help understand the points of reference, health-seeking behaviors, and support sources that influence their health, well-being and engagement in HIV care.

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