Factors associated with adolescent Sexual behaviour of high school girls in Vihiga District.
Ndayala, Phoebe Didi
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The purpose of the study was to investigate the association between the adolescent's parent's socio-economic and demographic status, their personal attitudes and qualities, the print and electronic media, peers, and the type of school and the adolescents' sexual behavior. A conceptual model derived from Brofenbrennner's Ecology of Human Development theory was used to guide this study. The study employed the descriptive survey research design. A random sample of 140 school girls from four schools; one girls boarding, one mixed boarding and two day schools from Vihiga division constituted the study sample for the study. Data was collected by use of a self administered questionnaire and Focus Group Discussion. Descriptive statistics, namely percentages and frequencies were used to describe the adolescents' sexual behavior. Cross-tabulation was done and Chi-Square used to establish whether there was any relationship between the independent variables and the adolescent sexual behavior. Adolescent ages in the study ranged from 13 to 20 years. Out of the 140 respondents, 74 (52.9%) of them were found to have a boyfriend. A Majority of the respondents; however, reported to have received love letters or gifts during their relationship (N=89, 63.6%). However, a minority of these students reported that they had ever, engaged in lesbianism (N= 16, 11.4%). The respondents who had multiple partners were found to be more (N=29, 65.6%) than those who had one sexual partner. Out of the 63 respondents who had started having sexual relations, 26 (41.3%) reported that they started at the age of 14. The most reported sexual partners for the sexually active girls were boyfriends who were of the same age as them. The most cited reason for having engaged in sexual intercourse among the sexually active girls was to peer pressure (52.4%). Chi-Square results revealed no significant relationship between the adolescent's attitude towards premarital sexual intercourse and their adolescent sexual behavior, but found adolescent friends sexual behaviors had significant relationships with their sexual behavior. Majority of the respondents reported that they got their sexuality information from their teachers (N=107, 76.4%). The Chi-Square tests showed a significant relationship between print and electronic media and various indicators of adolescent sexual behavior. The opinion most valued on sexual issues by the adolescents was that of parents. Parenting practices like parents fighting, drinking, or being broke were not found to have any significant relationship with the adolescent's sexual behavior. A majority of the students (82.9%) reported that they had sex education programs in their schools. The most reported sex education program in school was Guidance and Counseling. The Chi- Square results between the presence of sex education programs in schools and adolescent sexual behavior were found to be significant for the factor of the adolescents engaging in sex with the opposite sex. In view of the findings that emerged from this study, the researcher recommended that existing school sex education programs, church, family, and the media can be used to educate the youth about their sexuality and promote their awareness on how they can handle sex-related issues.