The role of parental environment on age at sexual debut and risk profile of first sexual relationships in rural southwestern Uganda

Brent Wolff, Medical Research Council, Uganda
Daniel Wight, MRC social science unit
Dominic Bukenya, Medical Research Council
Heiner Grosskurth, MRC/UVRI Uganda research Unit on AIDS

We investigate the role of parental environment on transition to first sex and associated sexual health risks in rural southwestern Uganda. During the 2004/5 annual serosurvey round of a population cohort, 1369 youth aged 13 to 18 who reported never having sex in the main survey (est 60% of the census population) were interviewed by youth interviewers. A second youth module two years later interviewed 2023 youth aged 13 to 20 regardless of sexual activity. 695 baseline respondents (46%) were reinterviewed, of whom 135 (20%) had reported first sex. In cox hazard regressions, parental leniency was significantly associated with earlier sexual debut, while close relationships to fathers were significantly associated with later sexual debut controlling for age. Further influence of parental environment on risk associated with partnership type and timing will be investigated. Conclusion: Parents should be informed on ways to protect children’s sexual health.

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 15: The social context of adolescent sexual behaviour