Parents, peers, and risky sexual behaviors in rural African American adolescents

Maureen A. Young, Alexander T. Vazsonyi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


In this study, the authors examined the relationships among parenting factors (closeness, communication, support, and monitoring), peer deviance, and adolescent risky sexual behavior in a sample of rural African American youth (N = 689). Descriptive analyses revealed that risky sexual activity in this sample was common, with a little over half of the sample endorsing participation in one or more risky sexual behaviors. Despite promising associations between parent variables and risky sexual activity, only peer deviance was predictive of risky sexual behavior in the final model. Thus, findings indicate that peer deviance was a salient predictor of risky sexual behaviors in this rural African American sample. Due to the high rates of risky sexual behaviors in the present sample and the serious consequences that may result from such behaviors, future researchers need to focus on their etiology in this understudied population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-93
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Genetic Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank the participants for making this study possible. This study was supported in part by a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Research Initiative (00-35401-9256), and by a Competitive Research Grant from Auburn University to Maureen A. Young.


  • context
  • minority youth
  • peer deviance
  • race/ethnicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


Dive into the research topics of 'Parents, peers, and risky sexual behaviors in rural African American adolescents'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this