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Journal of Social Aspects of HIV/AIDS

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Africans--Sexual behavior, Communication in families--Research


This study explores what constructs are associated with parent–adolescent communication about AIDS/sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and sexual relationships in Nigeria. The analyses use data from the 2007 National HIV/AIDS and Reproductive Health Survey on 2593 men and women who had at least one child over the age of 12 years. The respondents were classified as low, medium, or high communicators. Low communicators were parents who did not talk to their child about either AIDS/STIs or sexual relationships. Medium communicators were parents who discussed only one topic with at least one child. High communicators were parents who discussed both topics with at least one child. Logistic regression was used to compare high communicators with low/medium communicators. There are commonalities and differences among men and women in the factors associated with parent–adolescent communication. Age, religion, and knowing where to obtain information about HIV/AIDS were associated with the extent of communication, regardless of the parent's gender. Perceived social support was an important correlate for fathers, while knowledge of female STI symptoms showed a significant association only for mothers. Programmatic and communication implications of the findings include addressing men and women differently, developing strategies to specifically reach younger parents and Muslims, and increasing general awareness of HIV/AIDS information resources. Further research is needed to understand the context, content, and timing of parent–adolescent conversations about AIDS/STIs and sexual relationships and how these factors affect the sexual behaviors of adolescents.



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