173917 Preference for Sex and Number of children and contraceptive use in Rural Ethiopia

Monday, October 27, 2008

Binyam Tesfaye , Ethiopian Population Studies Association, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Assefa Hilemaraim , Population Study Research Center, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Ethiopia's population in 2005 was estimated to be 77 million. The high rate of population growth is the result of high fertility, which arises from early age at marriage, desire for many children, son preference and extremely low contraceptive use.


The study used the 2005 Demographic and Health Survey of Ethiopia. The sample population consisted of 5,120 married non-pregnant women in the age range of 15 to 49 years. Logistic Regression Analysis is employed in order to assess the impact of these preferences on current use of contraceptives.


The study reveals that men have larger mean ideal number of children (7.3 children) than women (5.9 children). Respondents' preference on ideal sex composition of children and their contraceptive use and fertility shows the existence of widespread son preference. The study also shows that women who have achieved or exceeded their desired family size and with larger number of sons are more likely to use contraception. The findings also showed that preference for sons and large numbers of children adversely affect current use of contraceptives. Furthermore, quantitative estimates for the impact of sex preference on contraceptive use showed that, elimination of sex preference in rural Ethiopia would increase the contraceptive prevalence rate of the area by 12 percent.


It appears from the results that any program aimed at promoting family planning in Ethiopia must seek ways and means of reducing the need and motivation of having many children, especially sons.

Learning Objectives:
To examine the effect of sex and number preference on current use of contraceptives To identify the correlates of sex and number preference

Keywords: Contraception, Culture

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: The study is conducted as a partial fulfillment of a masterís program at the population studies training center of Addis Ababa University. It involves also a supervision from the department and it is funded by the school of graduate studies at the university.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.