The role of knowledge in the contraceptive behaviour of sexually active young people in state care

Abbey Hyde, Deirdre Fullerton, Maria Lohan, Laura Dunne, Geraldine Macdonald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)
248 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Aim: To analyse the role of sex-focused knowledge in the contraceptive behaviour of sexually active young people in state care.

Methods: The sample consisted of 19 care leavers (young people previously in state care) aged 18-22 years, 16 females and 3 males. In-depth interviewing was the method of data collection, and a qualitative strategy resembling modified analytical induction was used to analyse data.

Findings: Findings indicated that a lack of information was not the sole, or even the primary reason for engaging in unsafe sexual practices. Other factors such as ambivalence to becoming pregnant also featured in participants’ accounts. Several participants conveyed a relatively weak sense of agency about consistently using contraception. A small number of participants expressed a strong determination to avoid pregnancy, and these appeared to have a level of anxiety about becoming pregnant that motivated them to engage with knowledge about contraception and its use.

Conclusion: Lack of sex-focused information is just one aspect of a myriad of complex factors, including socioeconomic disadvantage and/or emotional deprivation, that influences contraceptive behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-41
Number of pages5
JournalSexual And Reproductive Healthcare
Volume8
Early online date15 Feb 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016

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