The Fertility Race
HIV and Infertility

Difficult Decisions

MONEY IS NOT THE MAIN THING Harrison and Lilly brood about in deciding whether to have a child. Their chief concern is risk - even the relatively low danger predicted by the Assisted Reproduction Foundation. Their eyes rim with tears as they weigh the danger of bearing a child infected with HIV.

"I don't think we could handle that," Harrison says quietly, then adds with determination, "If there's a measurable chance that that could happen, we just wouldn't have a child."

"I don't think I could deal with being responsible for losing my own child," Lilly says.

And there is one more issue to struggle with. Harrison is worried by reports that the anti-AIDS drugs which keep his illness under control are turning out to be less effective over the long term than first hoped. "A few years ago we thought maybe I won't die. Now that's no longer the case. I don't think children without two parents have as much opportunity in the world," Harrison says.

Lilly concludes, "You can see it everywhere. There's so many social problems now. It all seems to be coming back to nobody's home with the children. People are just doing what they want 'cause it feels good. We can't do that. We can't just go ahead because we want a baby. There's more to it than just your desire to have a child."

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