Understanding gender roles in teen pregnancy prevention among American Indian youth

Jessica D. Hanson, Tracey R. McMahon, Emily R. Griese, Den Yelle Baete Kenyon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Objectives: To examine the impact of gender norms on American Indian (AI) adolescents' sexual health behavior. Methods: The project collected qualitative data at a reservation site and an urban site through 24 focus groups and 20 key informant interviews. Results: The reasons that AI youth choose to abstain or engage in sexual intercourse and utilize contraception vary based on gender ideologies defined by the adolescent's environment. These include social expectations from family and peers, defined roles within relationships, and gender empowerment gaps. Conclusions: Gender ideology plays a large role in decisions about contraception and sexual activity for AI adolescents, and it is vital to include redefinitions of gender norms within AI teen pregnancy prevention program.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)807-815
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of health behavior
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Am J Health Behav.


  • American Indians
  • Gender norms
  • Sexual health
  • Teen pregnancy


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