The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

3359.0: Monday, November 17, 2003 - Board 6

Abstract #59574

Correlates of sexual risk taking and risk perceptions among college women who partner with women

Shelly Campo, PhD, Community and Behavioral Health, University of Iowa, 200 Hawkins Drive, E237 GH, Iowa City, IA 52244, 319-384-5393, and M. Somjen Frazer, B A, City and Regional Planning, Cornell University, 207 West Sibley Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853.

A survey was conducted in 2002 to examine risk taking sexual behaviors, AOD use, self-esteem, sexual identity and risk perceptions of women who partner with women. The survey was based on the Extended Parallel Process Model, the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Belief Model. This research was part of a mixed-method, participatory needs-assessment conducted in partnership with the health center, students, and the LGBT Resource Center at a northeastern university. A snowball sample including graduate and undergraduate students was used to obtain responses from a racially diverse sample with a mean age of 22.6. Fifty-four women participated in a 26 page survey. Results suggest that self-esteem, age and lesbian self-identification are positively related to the total number of female sexual partners. Number of male partners in the last year are positively correlated with the use of drugs and alcohol during sex, but failed to predict whether a respondent had an STI test in the last year, while number of lifetime female partners positively predicts whether the respondent had an STI test. Self-reports of level of agreement with “I must know my partner well before sex” were negatively correlated with use of drugs and alcohol during sex. Perceptions of risk and susceptibility failed to predict whether or not the respondent received an STI test. Alcohol use is moderate, while illegal drug use is prevalent, with 35.2% using marijuana, and 15.9% using ecstasy. Self-identity as bisexual positively correlates with ecstasy use, while the opposite is true for self-identified lesbians.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Lesbian, Sexual Risk Behavior

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: Cornell University
I have a significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
Relationship: I was an employee of the University being discusses at the time of this project. They also funded the research.

Topics in LGBT Health - II

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA