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J Fam Pract. 2001 Jul;50(7):603-7.

Adolescent girls' attitudes toward pregnancy: the importance of asking what the boyfriend wants.

Author information

1
Salud Family Health Centers, 1115 Second St., Fort Lupton, CO 80621, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We evaluated the factors associated with attitudes toward pregnancy among girls presenting to an adolescent health clinic to better predict which girls are at the highest risk of pregnancy.

STUDY DESIGN:

We used a cross-sectional provider-administered survey design.

POPULATION:

A total 202 girls aged 13 to 18 years presenting consecutively for reproductive health services to an adolescent care clinic were interviewed about their desire for pregnancy. Girls found to be already pregnant at the initial visit (n=54) were removed from analysis.

OUTCOMES:

measured The main outcome measured was desire for pregnancy. Subjects were grouped by those desiring pregnancy (n=16), those desiring to avoid pregnancy (n=107), and those ambivalent about pregnancy (n=25).

RESULTS:

The girls who were ambivalent about pregnancy were not significantly different from the girls desiring pregnancy. In unadjusted analysis, girls desiring pregnancy or who were ambivalent about it were more likely to be Hispanic, unemployed, to not attend school, to live with neither natural parent, and to have lived away from home for more than 2 weeks. In adjusted analysis, the reported attitude of the boyfriend toward having a child was the only significant predictor of adolescent girls&rsquo attitude toward pregnancy.

CONCLUSIONS:

The best predictor of an adolescent girl&rsquos attitude toward pregnancy is her perception of her boyfriends&rsquo desire for a baby. Primary care providers should include boyfriends in any efforts to delay pregnancy in at-risk adolescent girls. Teenagers who are ambivalent about whether they want to be pregnant do not differ significantly from those desiring pregnancy, and should be considered just as high risk.

PMID:
11485709
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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