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J Adolesc Health. 1997 Mar;20(3):198-203.

Procreative experiences and orientations toward paternity held by incarcerated adolescent males.

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Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA.



To describe the procreative experiences and the attitudes related to paternity held by a sample of incarcerated adolescent males.


All adolescent males who were admitted to a long-term correctional facility between July 1994 and October 1994 were asked to participate in a confidential, face-to-face interview.


One hundred twenty-five incarcerated adolescents agreed to participate in the study. Over one-quarter (25.6%) of the respondents reported having ever gotten a girl pregnant; 40.6% of fathers reported having caused more than one pregnancy. A majority of respondents believed that fathering a child would be desirable, that they would be capable of being a father to a child, and that they could be responsible for the baby and mother. Fathers were more likely than nonfathers and black respondents were more likely than white respondents to report that they, their parents, and their friends would be pleased were they to get girls pregnant. Black respondents were more likely than white respondents to believe that they could be a good father to a child.


The general perceptions that fathering a child as a teenager is desirable and that they could be good fathers to their children will make the prevention of pregnancy and parenting difficult in this population. Incarcerated adolescents should be educated about parenting prevention using interventions that take into consideration their attitudes and perceptions of teenage parenting.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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