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J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2019 May 28. pii: S1083-3188(19)30205-0. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2019.05.009. [Epub ahead of print]

Teen Pregnancy Experiences of Sexual Minority Women.

Author information

1
Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address: bcharlton@mail.harvard.edu.
2
Department of Sociology, Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts.
3
Department of Pediatrics, Boston University Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.
4
Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVE:

Sexual minority women are more likely than heterosexual peers to have a teen pregnancy, though little is known about origins of this disparity. Our objective was to describe teen pregnancy experiences among sexual minority women and elucidate potential risk factors.

DESIGN:

As a part of the SexuaL Orientation, Gender Identity, and Pregnancy Experiences (SLOPE) study, in-depth semistructured interviews and surveys were conducted.

SETTING:

Across the United States.

PARTICIPANTS:

Interviews were conducted with 10 sexual minority cisgender women, ages 21-66 years, who experienced a teen pregnancy.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Interview transcripts were analyzed using immersion/crystallization and template organizing style approaches. The themes were contextualized using survey data and organized into a conceptual model.

RESULTS AND CONCLUSION:

Participants first became pregnant between ages 12 and 19 years; all pregnancies were described as unintentional. Half of the pregnancies resulted from sexual assault. Most of the remaining pregnancies resulted from consensual sex with a boyfriend or regular partner with whom the participant reported inconsistent or no contraceptive use. Five primary themes emerged from participants' interviews: (1) sexuality; (2) life history and contextual factors before pregnancy; (3) abuse and assault; (4) reactions to the pregnancy; and (5) pregnancy outcomes. Future research should assess each theme to explore its contribution to the higher burden of teen pregnancies among sexual minority compared with heterosexual women; such data can inform public health prevention campaigns and evidenced-based curricula for health care providers who care for adolescents.

KEYWORDS:

Pregnancy in adolescence; Qualitative research; Risk factors; Sexual minorities; Violence; Women

PMID:
31145986
DOI:
10.1016/j.jpag.2019.05.009

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