Nursing Research

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Nursing Research:
doi: 10.1097/NNR.0b013e3181fa4d48

Sexual Self-concept and Intended Sexual Behavior of Young Adolescent Taiwanese Girls

Pai, Hsiang-Chu; Lee, Sheuan; Chang, Ting

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Background: People begin to become aware of their sexual drive and erotic feelings as young adolescents. Such activity often has been overlooked in Taiwan, a traditional society, because sexuality is viewed as a private issue.

Objectives: The purpose of this study was to explore the sexual self-concept and intended sexual behavior of young adolescent girls in Taiwan.

Methods: Participants included 372 girls, 12 to 14 years old, from junior high schools in Taiwan who completed two questionnaires on sexual experience and sexually related items: the Sexual Self-Concept Inventory, the Parental Approval of Sexual Behavior Scale, and the Friends' Approval of Sexual Behavior Scale, which were combined into one scale, with separate scores.

Results: Girls' self-reports showed low (negative) sexual self-concept, high perceived parental disapproval, and somewhat high perceived friends' disapproval of sexual activities. Sexual self-concept is associated with perceived parental and peer approval of sexual activities, and it is associated with sexual experience and intended sexual activities as well. A young adolescent girl who has a high score on the perceived sexual arousability factor of the Sexual Self-Concept Inventory is more likely to report the strongest intention toward sexual behavior.

Discussion: Sexual self-concept may play a key role in girls' intended sexual activities, including engaging in low-level sexual activities (e.g., kissing and breast fondling) that occur before intercourse, even when associated with intercourse intention. The research suggests that addressing sexual self-concept needs to be a priority to prevent young girls from engaging in sexual intercourse.

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.


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