The structural influence of family and parenting on young people's sexual and reproductive health in rural northern Tanzania

Wamoyia, J., Wight, D. and Remes, P. (2015) The structural influence of family and parenting on young people's sexual and reproductive health in rural northern Tanzania. Culture, Health and Sexuality, 17(6), pp. 718-732. (doi: 10.1080/13691058.2014.992044) (PMID:25597368) (PMCID:PMC4419469)

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This paper explores the structural role of the family and parenting in young people's sexual and reproductive health. The study involved eight weeks of participant observation, 26 in-depth interviews, and 11 group discussions with young people aged 14–24 years, and 20 in-depth interviews and 6 group discussions with parents/carers of children in this age group. At an individual level, parenting and family structure were found to affect young people's sexual behaviour by influencing children's self-confidence and interactional competence, limiting discussion of sexual health and shaping economic provision for children, which in turn affected parental authority and daughters' engagement in risky sexual behaviour. Sexual norms are reproduced both through parents' explicit prohibitions and their own behaviours. Girls are socialised to accept men's superiority, which shapes their negotiation of sexual relationships. Interventions to improve young people's sexual and reproductive health should recognise the structural effects of parenting, both in terms of direct influences on children and the dynamics by which structural barriers such as gendered power relations and cultural norms around sexuality are transmitted across generations.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Wight, Professor Danny and Remes, Dr Pieter
Authors: Wamoyia, J., Wight, D., and Remes, P.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Culture, Health and Sexuality
Publisher:Taylor and Francis
ISSN (Online):1464-5351
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 The Authors
First Published:First published in Culture, Health and Sexuality 17(6):718-732
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
656641Children, Young People, Families and Health ProgrammeDaniel WightMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/9IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU