Parenting Practices and Adolescent Sexual Behavior: A Longitudinal Study

Authors

  • Melina Bersamin,

    Corresponding author
    1. Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation
      Prevention Research Center, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 1995 University Avenue, Suite 450, Berkeley, CA 94706 (mbersamin@prev.org).
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  • Michael Todd,

    1. Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation
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  • Deborah A. Fisher,

    1. Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation*
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    • *

      Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 11720 Beltsville Drive, Suite 900, Calverton, MD 20705.

  • Douglas L. Hill,

    1. The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia**
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    • **

      The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, 3535 Market Street, Room 1551, Philadelphia, PA 19104.

  • Joel W. Grube,

    1. Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation***
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    • ***

      Prevention Research Center, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 1995 University Avenue, Suite 450, Berkeley, CA 94706.

  • Samantha Walker

    1. Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation***
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    • ***

      Prevention Research Center, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 1995 University Avenue, Suite 450, Berkeley, CA 94706.


Prevention Research Center, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 1995 University Avenue, Suite 450, Berkeley, CA 94706 (mbersamin@prev.org).

Abstract

The effects of parental attitudes, practices, and television mediation on adolescent sexual behaviors were investigated in a study of adolescent sexuality and media (N = 887). Confirmatory factor analyses supported an eight-factor parenting model with television mediation factors as constructs distinct from general parenting practices. Logistic regressions indicated that adolescents reporting greater parental disapproval and limits on viewing at Wave 1 were less likely to initiate oral sex between Waves 1 and 2. Adolescents who reported more sexual communication with parents were more likely to initiate oral sex. Results for vaginal intercourse were similar to those for oral sex. Coviewing was a significant negative predictor of initiation of sexual behavior. Parental attitudes and television mediation can delay potentially risky adolescent sexual behaviors.

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