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Shaping sexual behaviors/sexual scripts

Adolescent Condom Use, Parent-adolescent Sexual Health Communication, and Pornography

Adolescent Condom Use, Parent-adolescent Sexual Health Communication, and Pornography: Findings from a U.S. Probability SampleFull Article Title: Adolescent Condom Use, Parent-adolescent Sexual Health Communication, and Pornography: Findings from a U.S. Probability Sample

Open Access: No

Abstract

Sexual scripts in pornography rarely include condoms. Many teenagers in the U.S. are exposed to pornography and have unprotected sex. Despite this, only a few studies have investigated whether greater pornography exposure is associated with condomless sex among U.S. teenagers, and these were conducted using clinical, convenience samples, many years ago, with data collections at a single location. This paper reports contemporary results on U.S. teenagers’ exposure to pornography, parent-adolescent sexual health communication, and condom use from the National Survey of Porn Use, Relationships, and Sexual Socialization (NSPRSS), a U.S. population-based probability study. Although the correlations were in the expected direction, neither pornography exposure nor parent-adolescent sexual health communication were related at the bivariate level to teenagers’ use of condoms. However, consistent with the sexual script acquisition, activation, application model (3AM) of sexual media socialization, pornography exposure interacted with parent-adolescent sexual health communication to predict condomless sex. Pornography exposure was associated with an increased probability of condomless sex only when parents engaged in little to no sexual health communication with their children. When parent-adolescent sexual health communication was high, pornography use was unrelated to teenagers’ engagement in condomless sex. These results are consistent with the public health position that pornography can be a risk factor for condomless sex, the theoretical position that the socializing impact of sexual media depends on consumers’ existing sexual scripts, and the pedagogical position that parent-adolescent sexual health communication can buffer youth against detrimental effects of sexual media.

      Citation

      Wright, P. J., Paul, B., & Herbenick, D. (2019). Adolescent condom use, parent-adolescent sexual health communication, and pornography: Findings from a U.S. probability sample. Health Communication, (2019). https://doi.org/10.1080/10410236.2019.1652392