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Sexual differences between races

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Whether the effect of gender on the risk of first intercourse is influenced by adolescents' ethnicity has received limited attention in research on age at first sex.

Such information could provide a more complete understanding of adolescent sexual behavior. Life-table analysis using data from a population-based, ethnically diverse sample of Los Angeles County youths was employed to estimate the median age at first sex for each gender-and-ethnicity group. Multivariate analysis using proportional hazards techniques was conducted to determine the relative risk of Sexual differences between races activity among teenagers in each group.

Overall, the teenagers in the sample had a median age at Sexual differences between races sex of Black males had the lowest observed median Hispanic and Asian American females had rates of first sex Sexual differences between races half that of white females, although these protective effects were explained by differences in family structure.

Findings and Discussion

Even after controlling for background characteristics, black males had rates of first sex that were about times the rates of the other gender-and-ethnicity groups. In addition, Asian American males were less likely than Hispanic males to be sexually experienced, and Hispanic males had almost twice the rates of Sexual differences between races activity of Hispanic females.

Socioeconomic conditions account for ethnic differences among females in the age at first sex, and cultural influences may contribute to the difference between Hispanic males and females; explanations for black males, however, remain elusive.

An individual's first sexual intercourse is embedded with multiple personal and social meanings. For adolescents, it contributes to redefining one's identity from child to developing teenager and reconfigures important interpersonal relationships, including those with peers, parents and sexual intimates.

Numerous factors influence the initiation of sexual activity—individual and familial characteristics, 6 as well as such larger social forces as community and peer influences. Indeed, the social and cultural meanings of being sexually active, as well as normative proscriptions and prescriptions about the timing of first sex, vary to a great extent according to a youth's gender and ethnicity.

Most research has concentrated on females, partly because national fertility studies interview only females and because of the historical interest in teenage pregnancy. However, studies that have included both males and females have consistently shown gender differences in Sexual differences between races age at first sexual experience. Theoretical explanations of ethnic differences in age at first sex tend to emphasize economic and sociocultural influences.

Furstenberg and colleagues outline three possible explanations for observed ethnic differences. This argument suggests that reducing the ethnic differentials in socioeconomic conditions would attenuate the relationship between ethnicity and age at first sex.

This interpretation suggests that ethnic variation in age at first sex would be reduced if differentials in social conditions were taken into account. Furstenberg and colleagues find limited support for the first two explanations and Sexual differences between races support for the one characterized by subgroup differences in attitudes and norms regarding sexual activity. Few studies using nationally representative data have included Hispanics. Furthermore, although Hispanics are heterogeneous with regard to national origin, few national data sets contain samples large enough to allow for comparisons within Hispanic subgroups.

One exception, an analysis of data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, found that age at first intercourse varies between Mexican Americans and other Hispanics. Furthermore, Sexual differences between races studies have comprehensively compared differences in age at first sex for both genders and across multiple ethnic Sexual differences between races. Although a recent analysis using data from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey YRBS estimated age at first sex by gender and ethnicity, 20 only three ethnic groups were compared: Also, no variables other than ethnicity were included in the descriptive analysis.

Finally, no statistical tests were performed to determine the significance of the Sexual differences between races between gender, ethnicity and age at first sex.

An individual's first sexual intercourse...

The majority Sexual differences between races studies that have examined both gender and ethnic effects on the timing of first intercourse Sexual differences between races stratified the data according to gender, 21 thereby preventing any comparison of ethnic effects across gender e.

The purpose Sexual differences between races this article is to estimate the Sexual differences between races of youths' gender and ethnicity on their risk of first sexual intercourse. We test both the main effects of each on the risk of first sex and the extent to which the effects of gender are conditioned by adolescents' ethnicity.

We also include family background characteristics known to be associated with age at first sex family structure and socioeconomic status to ascertain the Sexual differences between races to which the observed gender or ethnic differences are due to variations in family background. Our data come from a population-based sample of Los Angeles County youths. Los Angeles is one of the largest and most ethnically, culturally and economically diverse counties in the country. We analyze data from a longitudinal survey of stress and mental health conducted among a representative sample of Los Angeles County youths aged The first round of the survey took Sexual differences between races between October and Apriland the second between March and May The sample was selected using a census-based sampling frame and is therefore more diverse than a convenience sample or one drawn from a small number of schools.

Yet its regional nature allows us to analyze gender and ethnic effects within a more uniform set of social and cultural contexts than would be possible using a national sample. Participants were selected from a multistage, area probability sampling frame of Los Angeles County, Sexual differences between races on census tracts, blocks and households.

County census tracts were stratified according to socioeconomic status, ethnicity and the proportion of households with children. A total of 49 tracts were selected, Sexual differences between races the probability Sexual differences between races selection proportional to size.

Blocks were selected randomly within tracts, every address on selected blocks was listed and household addresses were selected at fixed intervals with a random start.

Fieldworkers went door-to-door to determine whether an adolescent aged was a permanent resident at the address. Sexual differences between races ascertained the ages of household members before identifying the target ages, to avoid bias due to the selective omission of eligible persons as a means Sexual differences between races avoiding participation in the study.

In households that included two or more teenagers, the one whose birthday would occur soonest after the interview was selected. Consent was obtained from the adolescents and their parents. The remainder were not screened for a variety of reasons: Lay interviewers trained specifically for this investigation conducted each interview at the respondent's home or in a private setting of the teenager's choice. Interviews were conducted in English or Spanish, and the ethnicity of the interviewer was matched to the major ethnicity in the neighborhood.

The Spanish questionnaire was a verified translation of the English version. Supervisory personnel randomly monitored interviews. Characteristics for the initial sample correspond closely to census data for gender and age. To adjust for some variations in age across ethnic groups, we weighted the sample to match the census distribution by ethnicity and to be evenly distributed by single year of age.

Weights also adjust for variability in selection probabilities resulting from the presence of households with several eligible adolescents. The application of these weights compensates for threats to external validity inherent in teenagers' nonparticipation. On average, the adolescents in the sample were We excluded a small number of respondents who reported having had their first heterosexual intercourse prior to age 11, because the circumstances with respect to sexual activity are unique for those who have sex at such a young age.

Sex/gender and race/ethnicity are complex...

The descriptive statistics are based on the weighted analytic sample of For the multivariate analysis, results are based on the unweighted sample. Our dependent variable is the number of months from exact age 11 to first heterosexual intercourse. We Sexual differences between races this information by Sexual differences between races respondents if they had ever had sexual intercourse and, if so, how many months ago they had first had sex.

These questions were asked in both the original survey and the follow-up interview. We developed a small number of coding rules that accounted for the vast majority of discrepancies in reports between the two surveys. Given the sensitive nature of questions regarding sexual activity, we incorporated a number of steps to minimize potential biases.

gate-level data to examine the...

Procedures to maximize overall design validity and reliability included conducting interviews in private settings that the respondents found comfortable, training interviewers in techniques for handling potentially awkward or embarrassing questions, and having supervisors closely monitor interviewers. Also, the questions on sexual behavior were asked midway through the Sexual differences between races, after numerous sensitive questions had been asked about the adolescent's personal life, Sexual differences between races, family and so forth.

African-American girls had a greater...

Furthermore, the survey content dealt primarily with stress and mental health, avoiding potential selection bias on the basis of prior sexual behavior. The two primary independent variables of interest are gender and ethnicity. According to the conceptualization developed Sexual differences between races O'Sullivan-See and Wilson, 23 ethnicity is embodied in shared beliefs, norms, values and preferences that vary together.

Sample and Methodology

We measured ethnicity by asking a set of questions Sexual differences between races how respondents identify themselves. The first question was: The first question proved sufficient to establish the respondent's ethnicity; only 24 additional teenagers identified themselves as Hispanic on the basis of the second question, and these respondents were included Sexual differences between races the first category they mentioned.

In general, we expected blacks to report younger ages at first sex than whites, Hispanics or Asian Americans. In addition, we expected the effects of gender on age at first sex to depend on the youth's ethnicity. For example, females may not be less likely than males to have sex in all ethnic groups.

We also included several indices of youths' socioeconomic and family background. Family structure was coded into four categories: As with much past research, we expected to see higher rates of first sex among those living in a single-parent situation than among those living with both biological parents.

The analysis also included mother's education coded as high school dropout, high school graduate or at least some college and household income coded into quartiles. Both the descriptive and the multivariate analysis were based on survival analysis techniques, for two reasons. First, we expected the risk of initiation of sexual activity to increase as adolescents get older. Second, since the majority of individuals in the sample were still very young Sexual differences between races the time of the Sexual differences between races interview, many still had not had sex by then i.

We used Kaplan-Meier life tables to analyze the effects of each independent variable on the timing of first sexual experience. These estimates are nonparametric and are therefore not subject to biases due Sexual differences between races violations of distributional assumptions of the underlying hazard. Since the number of events is quite small at later intervals, we used the generalized Wilcoxon test to examine homogeneity across the categories of covariates; we also examined homogeneity using the log-rank test.

The multivariate analysis was based on a proportional hazards model that does not assume any specific functional form for the baseline hazard. We tested for proportionality by visually inspecting the log-log survival function plotted for every category of each independent variable. The ratio measures the rate of transition to first sex among teenagers in a given category relative to those in a comparison category, other factors held constant.

Overall, the teenagers surveyed reported a median age at first intercourse of Males reported a significantly younger age than females Significant ethnic differences also were apparent: Blacks reported the youngest median age at first intercourse In addition, adolescents living with both biological parents reported a later median age at first intercourse There were no significant differences in the age at first sex according to household income or mother's education.

These bivariate findings provide preliminary evidence that gender and ethnicity each influence the timing of first sexual experience. However, these relationships express only the gross main, or average, effects. When we recomputed the medians for each gender-and-ethnicity combination, significant differences emerged across ethnic groups for each gender Table 2.

Among males, blacks reported the youngest median age at first sex Age at first sexual experience did not vary as much by ethnicity for females, although we did find significant differences. Furthermore, the survey makes no attempt to take into account important differences between the nations Sexual differences between races that could influence sexual. Literature is reviewed on differences between the three groups in rate of ovulation, intercourse frequencies, sexual attitudes, developmental precocity, size of.

Native Americans, Africans, Asians, and Europeans are not races. They are. Sexual behavior differences between Black and white students.

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