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Conservative Parents and Conservative Condom Usage

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National Institutes of Health
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Elizabeth T.
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documents in English
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  1. Communication about sexual issues between parents and children is undoubtedly a sensitive subject
  2. there is overwhelming evidence for the benefit of condoms in reducing STI risk
  3. Sexual education has gone through many generations of methods and values
  4. Targeting a more upper-middle class, conservative and family-oriented subgroup

Condoms offer effective protection against the most serious sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and they are also probably the most accessible form of contraception for adolescents and younger adults (Katherine Dexter 2004). In 2000, almost half of all new STI infections were among adolescents ages 15 to 24, with human papillomavirus and HIV leading the infection rates (Chesson 2004). Although STIs present a multitude of health risks and consequences, many adolescents, including those who use condoms, are unaware of the potential harm from STIs. A study among college students found that within those who did use condoms, they still showed little concern for the issues of STIs and HIV. Instead, they were concerned with their partner's perceptions of condom use (Edgar 1992). This demonstrates how intricately involved interpersonal communication is in condom use, perhaps more important than the fear of STI risk. The study also suggests that those individuals who promoted condom use in the sexual activity had an internalized value for the precautionary measure of condom use.

[...] Edgar, Timothy, et al. (1992). Strategic Sexual Communication: Condom use resistance and response. Health Communication. 83-104. Eisenberg, Maria E., et al. (2004). Parents' beliefs about condoms and oral contraceptives. Perspectives on Sexual and [...]


[...] Even though condom education is not favored and often overlooked by parents of more conservative values, there is an opportunity to associate condom education with conservatism and increase its promotion within families through sexual education. Sexual education has gone through many generations of methods and values, but what has evolved is the reliance on the health belief model, so that there are elements and information targeting teens at all stages of their decision making. Sexual decisions exist very much in the private and public spheres, so they can be both incredibly individualized and incredibly publicized at the same time. [...]

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