Presentation on theme: "Parents and peers: Relative influence on adolescents healthy sexual behavior Alicia Muñoz Silva Manuel Sánchez García INTRODUCTION The high incidence of."— Presentation transcript:
Parents and peers: Relative influence on adolescents healthy sexual behavior Alicia Muñoz Silva Manuel Sánchez García INTRODUCTION The high incidence of unwanted pregnancies in the adolescence, thus as the probability of contracting sexually transmitted diseases ( STDs) do necessary the study and the comprehension of the variables that predict and explain risk behaviours of males and females adolescents. This study will permit us the design of programmes of intervention to reduce the risk behaviours and to promote prevention behaviours, especially the condom use in the sexual relations. Research into these matters points out two factors that support the condom use : attitude towards condom use and the intention of using a condom in their sexual relations (see, e.g., Basen- Enquist and Parcel, 1992; Boyd and Wandersman, 1991; Godin et al., 1996). The intentions as the attitudes towards condom use appear bound up with the social pressure for or against this behaviour (Bosompra, 2001; Ross and McLaws, 1992; Sánchez, 2001; Trafimov, 1994). The concept of social pressure refers to the subject´s perception about the attitude of their significant referents ( normally parents, peers, boyfriend or girlfriend) towards condom use. Most studies consider these different contexts in a unitary way, without discriminating among them. Our work sets out to differentiate the influence that parents and peers can have over the attitudes and the condom use intentions in male and female adolescents and to analyze possible gender differences in the prediction of attitude and intention. METHOD Participants 350 students (69% females and 31% males) of different Andalusian universities, aged 18 and 19. Fifty-one per cent of all the students tell to have steady partner; the 55% of the total group of subjects reported having had experience of sexual intercourse. Instrument and variables Data were gathered through a self-administered questionnaire about risk/prevention behaviours for AIDS (Sánchez, 2001). Four items were considered in this study : ATTITUDE :"Generally I am in favour of using condom" INTENTION :"Generally, I have the intention of using condom each time that I might have sexual intercourse" PARENTS :"My parents would recommended that I use condom when having sexual intercourse" PEERS :"My friends are in favour of using condom" The students have to mark the degree of agreement with every item in a 11-point scale from 0 (strongly disagree) until 10 (strongly agree). RESULTS For the estimate of the parameters of relation between variables we have utilized different models of linear regression analyses, obtained by SPSS 10 for Windows. First we estimate the influence of the subject´s perception about the parent attitude and peer attitude over the own attitude towards condom use and over the condom use intentions ( figure 1 ). In both cases the data refer to complete sample. The proposed model explain a 16% of the own attitude towards condom use from parent and peer attitude. The most influential variable is peer attitude, its influence is more of the double than parent attitude. We can tell almost the same with respect to the condom use intention, though in this case the difference is bigger : the influence of the peer attitude (.46) is almost the triple than the influence of parent attitude (.16). This model, that also is statistically significant, gets to explain 26 % of the intention of using condom in next sexual relations. In figure 2 we analyze the gender differences in relation to the prediction of the attitude from the perceived attitude in parents and peers. In both models we find appreciable differences between males and females. First, with respect to the prediction of the attitude of male and female students, we find the same relation observed in the obtained model for complete sample, in other words, the influence of the peers is always bigger than the parents one. Nevertheless, we have to underline that for males these differences are yet more accused : the weight of peer attitude (.45) is triple that the influence of parent attitude. Furthermore, this last statistician is not significant ( p =.10). In the case of females, though also the weight of peer attitude (.29) is bigger than parent attitudes, the difference is smaller with respect to the influence of parent attitude (.17). On the other hand, both values are significant. The same model gets to explain better the attitude of male students ( 25 % ) than female students´ ( 13 % ). Results are very similar in relation to the prediction of the intention to use condom (see figure 3). Parent attitude is a decisive factor that determine the females intentions, but not in the case of the male adolescents. Again, peer attitude is more influential in males: the influence of peer is almost four times as much as parent influence (.55 against.15, this last value is not significant); In the case of females this difference was reduced to the half (.40 against.20). Again the model is more explanatory for males ( 36 % ) than for females (23 % ). DISCUSSION The obtained results permit us to affirm that in this sample of male and female adolescents peer attitude towards condom use is more influential than parent attitude to determine adolescents´ own attitude towards condom use and their intention of using a condom in their next sexual relations. These results are consistent with prior research of Magnani et al. ( 2002 ), who also find a bigger influence of peers than parents in the adolescent sexual activity, especially in the use of condoms in the sexual relations. Parent attitude does not influences neither over the attitude nor over the use intention of males, but acquires more importance for females. Furthermore, the differences between the weights of peer and parent attitude are more accused for males than for females. Probably the processes of differential socializing that males and females live from the beginning of their lives are in the origin of such differences. These processes promote the dependence on the family in the females in bigger measurement than in the males. Peer influence in risk/prevention behaviours in adolescence deals with the need of that programmes for the prevention of AIDS and STDs promote autonomy of male and female adolescents so that they do not fall in conformist attitudes with respect to the opinion of their group of friends and particularly emphasizing the abilities of communication and negotiation in the sexual relations. But furthermore, and of complementary manner, programmes for the prevention must to be focused not only on isolated individuals but also on all the people and groups that make up the social networks of adolescents, like parents, friends, teachers and classmates, so that these contexts encourage positive attitudes towards the use of safe sex practices among sexually active adolescents (Bosompra, 2001; Dilorio et al., 2001; Friedman et al. 2001; Holschneider and Alexander, 2003; Jenkins, 2002). REFERENCES Basen-Enquist, K. and Parcel, G. S. (1992). Attitudes, norms and self-efficacy: A model of adolescents HIV related sexual risk behavior. Health Education Quarterly, 19, 263-274. Bosompra, K. (2001). Determinants of condom use intentions of university students in Ghana: An application of the theory of reasoned action. Social Science and Medicine, 52 (7), 1057-1069. Boyd, B. and Wandersman, A. (1991). Predicting undergraduate condom use with the Fishbein and Azjen and the Triandis attitude-behavior models: Implications for public health interventions. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 21, 1810-1830. Dilorio, C., Dudley, W.N., Kelly, M., Soet, J.E., Mbwara, J. and Potter, J. S. (2001). Social cognitive correlates of sexual experience and condom use among 13- through 15-year-old adolescents. Journal of Adolescent Health, 29, 208-216. Friedman, S.R., Flom, P.L., Kottiri, B.J., Neaigus, A., Sandoval, M., Curtis, R., Des Jarlais, D.C. and Zenilman, J.M. (2001). Consistent condom use in the heterosexual relationships of young adults who live in a high-HIV-risk neighbourhood and do not use "hard drugs". AIDS Care, 13 (3), 285- 299. Godin, G., Maticka-Tyndale, E., Adrien, A., Manson-Singer, S., Willms, D. and Cappon, P. (1996). Cross-cultural testing of three social cognitive theories: An applications to condom use. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 26, 1556-1586. Holdschneider, S.O.M. and Alexander, C.S. (2003). Social and Psychological Influences on HIV preventive Behaviors of Youth in Haiti. Journal of Adolescent Health, 33, 31-40. Jenkins, R. (2002). Sex, pregnancy, and contracepcion-related motivators and barriers among latino and african-american youth in Washington, DC. Sex Education, 2 (1), 5-30. Magnani, R.J.; Karim, A.M.; Weiss, L.A.; Bond, K.C.; Lemba, M. and Morgan, G.T. (2002). Journal of Adolescent Health, 30, 76-86. Ross, M. W. and McLaws, M. L. (1992). Subjective norms about condoms are better predictors to use and intentions to use tha atttitudes. Health Education Research, 7, 335-339. Sánchez, M. (2001). Validation of items and tests: An application to measure of risk behaviours of transmission of the HIV. Unpublised doctoral thesis. University of Sevilla. Trafimov, D. (1994). Predicting intentions to use condom from the perceptions of normative pressure and confidence in those perceptions. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 24, 2151-2163. ABSTRACT The aim of the research was to study the influence of adolescents´ perception of parent and peer attitude towards condom use on: a) adolescents´ own attitude towards condom use; and b) the intention of using a condom in their next sexual relations. The sample consisted of 350 students (69% females and 31% males) of different Andalusian universities, aged 18 and 19. Subjects filled out a questionnaire that included queries about the above variables. Results, which were obtained by different linear regression analyses, revealed that adolescents´ perception of peer attitude towards condom use predicted better their own attitude and intention of use than adolescents´ perception of parent attitude. On the other hand, separate analysis for males and females showed that adolescents´ perception of parent attitude was a factor of greater importance for females than for males. Results were discussed in relation to: the greater influence of peers as opposed to parents in adolescence; the role of group and peer pressure in prevention/risk behaviour; and the need to promote adolescent autonomy. Alicia Muñoz Silva. Departamento de Psicología. Universidad de Huelva. firstname.lastname@example.org*.55 PARENTS PEERS INTENTION Boys : 36%.20.40 PARENTS PEERS INTENTION Girls : 23%.16.46 PARENTS PEERS INTENTION 26% F= 60.10; p <.001.14.35 PARENTS PEERS ATTITUDE 16% F= 31.84; p <.001.15*.45 PARENTS PEERS ATTITUDE Boys : 25%.17.29 PARENTS PEERS ATTITUDE Girls : 23% Figure 1. Prediction of attitude and intention in complete sample Figure 3. Prediction of intention. Comparison by gender Figure 2. Prediction of attitude. Comparison by gender
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