180016 Parent-adolescent communication about sexuality in Chinese immigrant families in New York City Chinatown

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 11:10 AM

Jolene Chou, MPH , Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, New York, NY
Shao-Chee Sim, PhD , Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, New York, NY
Loretta Au, MD , Department of Pediatrics, Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, New York, NY
Shirley Sut Yee Chan , Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, New York, NY
Communication between parents and adolescents about sex in Chinese immigrant families has been understudied, despite compelling evidence that improved communication is associated with lower levels of risk behavior. Furthermore, little is known about the specific topics and extent of such intergenerational communication regarding sexuality. The main objectives of this study are 1) To examine the content and processes of parent-adolescent communication among underserved Chinese immigrants in New York City Chinatown; and 2) To better understand how health service providers can effectively facilitate communication within families about sexuality and sexual practices. Target population of the study consists of adolescents and parents in the New York City Chinatown. Data are collected through exploratory focus groups conducted separately with parents/grandparents and teens. We present the parental perception of interests of and challenges faced by their teenagers in the new country, attitudes towards and communication with their children's sexual practices, and beliefs on sex education. We also report teens' perception of parental knowledge and support, and the extent to which specific topics such as contraceptive use, sexually transmitted diseases, peer pressure, and family planning are covered in their communication with parents. Additionally, participants describe the nature of intergenerational communication and barriers they face, and relay how the immigration and acculturation process might have influenced their views and values on sexuality. We will discuss congruence and disparities in attitudes and communication approaches between parents and teens about sexuality, and identify opportunities for improved facilitation by clinical and health education providers.

Learning Objectives:
1) Articulate major gaps in parent-adolescent communication about sexual practices among Chinese immigrants, and 2) Identify opportunities for community-based health workers to facilitate sex-related communication between immigrant Chinese parents and teens.

Keywords: Adolescents, Immigrants

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I led the design, implementation, and analysis of the presented study.
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.