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Try out PMC Labs and tell us what you think. Learn More. The aims of this study is to understand factors associated with sexting among minority e. We recruited emerging adult heterosexual males and assessed sexting and sexual risk behaviors. Participants were more likely to sext with casual partners than with steady partners. Multiple regression analyses showed that participants who sent sexts to steady partners had ificantly more unprotected vaginal intercourse and oral sex.
Participants who sent sexts to casual partners had ificantly more partners, and participants who received sexts from casual partners had ificantly more unprotected oral sex and sex while on substances. We found that sexting is a frequent and reciprocal behavior among emerging adults, and there were different patterns of ificance for sexts with casual and steady partners.
It is no surprise that mobile technology has become a major form of communication within relationships, especially to remit messages around sex, known as sexting. Research in sexting is new and definitions vary considerably within the literature. Some definitions view sexting solely as the sending of explicit photos whereas others include messages or videos, or all three Lounsbury et al.
Lack of consensus on a definition and measurement makes comparison between studies difficult Drouin et al. The prevalence of sexting among young adults varies greatly from study to study. In a systematic review conducted by Klettke et al. These studies suggest that there is a high prevalence of sexting within emerging adults ages 18—25 and as a result more research is Seeking a sexting or more friend to see the impact of sexting on sexual health.
There has been limited research focused on emerging adults and sexting, especially as it relates to sexual risk behaviors e. The few studies that have looked at emerging adults, concentrated on undergraduate college populations, who are usually more educated and of higher socioeconomic status than general populations. Therefore, these studies did not explore the prevalence of sexting and its impact on populations with higher rates of sexual risk e. Inaccording to the Center for Disease Control, the Chlamydia rate among Black men between the ages of 20—24 was eight times the rate among White men of the same age group CDC, Similar, health disparities exist for unwanted pregnancy and HIV, with Black men having ificantly higher rates than their White counterparts CDC, Therefore, there is a need for more research that explores possible behaviors that may contribute to these large public health disparities.
There have been a few studies looking specifically at sexual risk and sexting but the evidence has been inconclusive Benotsch et al. Some have demonstrated a strong relationship between sexting and sexual risk Benotsch et al.
One possible reason for the mixed is that studies often do not differentiate the direction of the sexting i. The type of partner may be particularly relevant because it could differentiate between healthy sexual expression within a steady partnership versus a strategy to engage new and casual partnerships that may increase HIV risk Gordon-Messer et al.
A better understanding of how sexting direction and partner type e. Within the literature that exists about sexting, a of potential predictors of this behavior have emerged. Psychosexual variables that have been linked to increased sexuality, such as sensation seeking and sexual attitudes have been linked to sexting Benotsch et al.
Low self-esteem has been associated with sexual risk and problematic cell phone use e. The overall aims of this study are to understand factors e. We created four of sexting based on whether the sext was sent or received and to whom: 1 sext sent to steady partner, 2 sext received from steady partner, 3 sext sent to nonsteady partners i. Secondary data analyses were conducted using a study of emerging adult men from New Haven, CT, a small city in the Northeast United States with high levels of disadvantage e. Participants were recruited for a larger study of social networks, cell phones, and health behavior.
The recruitment process used a combination of time-location sampling and snowball sampling. First, we conducted epidemiologic assessments using census and department of public health data to identify neighborhoods within our target city with high risk e. Next, research assistants conducted ethnographic mapping of the areas to detail specific locations and times within Seeking a sexting or more friend neighborhoods that emerging adult men hung out e. Trained research assistants approached men in these locations and told them about the study.
Once a participant agreed, snowball sampling was then used to recruit friends of participants. Inclusion criteria for all participants included: a male gender, b age 18—25, c English-speaking, d heterosexual, and e in possession of a cell phone with texting capabilities, and ability to maintain cell phone service.
Data from these analyses are cross-sectional. During the appointment, research staff obtained written informed consent. Participants completed study measures via audio computer-assisted self-interviews ACASI with trained research staff. Participation was voluntary and confidential, and all procedures were approved by the Yale University Human Investigation Committee.
We followed a systematic process to develop the sexting questions. First, a comprehensive literature review on sexting including existing measures was conducted and summarized. Finally, we received feedback from two members of the study population i. Next, we created four sexting variables based on if sexts were ever sent or received to a steady partner or a hookup e.
The Hookup partners were grouped together because they indicate a relationship that is not steady and committed. The resulting four variables used to look at sexting were: 1 sexts sent to steady partners, 2 sexts received from steady partners, 3 sexts sent to hookups, and 4 sexts received from hookups. Participants were asked how many sexual partners they had in the past 3 months, and of those how many were casual partners.
Participants were asked the of times they had sex in the past 30 days, and of those times, the of times they had used condoms. This variable was obtained by subtracting the of times they used condoms from the of times they had sex. If the participants reported not having sex, they received a 0. This variable was obtained by subtracting the of times participants used condoms while receiving oral sex from the of times they received oral sex in the past 30 days.
If the participants reported not having oral sex, they received a 0. This variable was obtained by asking participants of the times they had sex, how many times were they on alcohol or drugs.
This variable was obtained by asking participants of the times they had sex, how many times their partner was on alcohol or drugs. This was assessed through nine items Arnett, intended to measure how often participants engaged in risky and reckless behaviors e. In the past 6 months, how many times have you shoplifted?
Participants scored their answers on a scale from 0 0 times to 5 more than 20 times. We calculated a mean risk and reckless behavior score with a higher score indicating riskier behavior. This modified scale consisted of four questions to assess if the participants considered themselves someone who engaged in sexually adventurous behavior Kalichman et al. The scale has been ly validated for inner city men Kalichman et al. This was assessed through an item scale looking at sensation-seeking behaviors Kalichman et al.
Each item was a statement e. We created a mean sensation-seeking score with higher scores indicating higher sensation seeking. This scale had three subscales: masculinity status norms, masculinity toughness, and masculinity anti-femininity. Masculine status norms had 11 items e. Masculinity toughness was assessed with 8 items e. Masculine anti-femininity was assessed with 5 items e. The participants are asked to respond using a 7-point Likert Scale ranging from 1 strongly disagree to 7 strongly agree. We calculated mean scores for each subscale and higher scores indicated more status norms, toughness, and anti-femininity.
Exposure to Pornography and Strip Clubs. This was assessed through two questions, which asked if the participants had watched pornography and gone to a strip club in the last three months.
Participants were asked how religious they were. This was measured on a scale from 0 not at all religious to 3 very much so. Participants responded to items on a scale from 1 strongly disagree to 4 strongly agree. Frequencies were assessed to describe sexting behaviors among emerging adult men. Next, unadjusted associations were assessed between predictor variables and each of our four sexting variables: 1 sext sent to steady partner, 2 sext received from steady partner, 3 sext sent to hookup, and 4 sext received from hookup. Multivariate logistic regression models were used to assess factors associated with sexting.
We ran backward logistic regressions to identify the best predictive model for each sexting variable. Next, to analyze sexual risk and sexting, unadjusted and adjusted multiple regression analysis models were conducted using backward selection to identify the best predictive model for all of the sexual outcomes.
All analysis was performed using SPSS version The sample consisted of heterosexual males with a racial breakdown of Over half of the participants were in a romantic relationship Figure 1 shows the breakdown of the four sexting groups by who the sexts were sent to and received from. Participants were more likely to receive sexts from hookups than to send sexts to hookups 56 vs. Figure 2 shows the different types of sexting behaviors for sexts sent and received. The most common type of sext received by men were naked photos. The most common type of sexting behavior sent by men was sending messages asking for sex.
Unadjusted predicting sexting are shown in Table 1. show that older, wealthier, more educated individuals, individuals who engaged in more risky and reckless behavior, had more positive sexual sensation-seeking Seeking a sexting or more friend, talked more frequently with friends about relationships, and watched porn in the last three months were more likely to have received a sext from a steady partner. Individuals who engaged in more positive sexual sensation-seeking behaviors, talked more frequently with friends about relationships, had more open and permissive attitudes towards sex, and watched porn in the last three months were more likely to send a sext to a steady partner.
For sexts received from a hookup, having engaged in more risky and reckless behavior, more positive sexual sensation-seeking behavior, having more open and permissive attitudes toward sex, talking more frequently with friends about relationships and sex, and exposure to porn and strip clubs were related to having received a sext from a hookup. For sexts sent to a hookup, more education, more risky and reckless behavior, more positive sexual sensation seeking, talking more frequently with friends about sex, and exposure to porn were related to having sent a sext to a hookup.
Those who watched porn in the past three months were 5. Our show that sexting was very common among a sample of low-income mostly minority emerging adult males. Overall the findings demonstrate that sexting is a reciprocal behavior with those who sext most likely engaging in both sending and receiving sexts. However, men seemed to be more passive than their female partners, with men much more likely to receive than send sexts.
This confirms research by Gordon-Messer et al. In particular, we found men rarely sent sexts without receiving them. However, men frequently received sexts without sending them, particularly from hookups. But the nature of the sexting seemed to differ within the two groups, with men more likely to receive sexts from hookups and to send sexts to steady partners.
This demonstrates a clear difference in how sexts work within the two of relationships and shows a different engagement with the behavior on the part of young men. This could imply that there are gender norms at play within sexting behaviors and that technology could be mediating and shifting the norms about sexual initiation and interactions between males and females.
Perhaps in the sexting world, females are more likely to initiate than males are, or the expectations differ on what is acceptable and when, from males and females. Of the few research studies looking at gender norms and texting, Olgetree and colleaguesfound gender role was a ificant indicator in the type of text messages sent and received, as well as the volume.Seeking a sexting or more friend
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I WANT YOUR SEXT: SEXTING AND SEXUAL RISK IN EMERGING ADULT MINORITY MEN