CitationThrane, Lisa & Chen, Xiaojin (2008). Runaway behavior and female sexual onset: Findings from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. 2008 Add Health Users Conference. Bethesda, MD.
AbstractProblem: The purpose of this study is to examine whether runaway behavior will have main effects on sexual onset, or if bonds to family and school and psychological resources will mute its influence. Methods: The sample consisted of 4,629 adolescent females from the Add Health study. A longitudinal analysis with logistic regression was applied to test if runaway behavior, deviant activity, psychological characteristics, school bonding, dating, and family factors increased the risk of sexual onset. Results: Findings indicate that runaway behavior increased the odds of first sex by 1.79. Alcohol use elevated the risk by over 2 times (Exp(B) = 2.18) with delinquency having little impact (Exp(B) = 1.09). There was no proof that poor mental health (e.g., depressive symptoms and low self esteem) increased the likelihood of first intercourse. Being involved in a romantic relationship increased the odds of first sex by at least 2 ½ times. The degree of autonomy and conflict with parents did not have main effects. There was no support that mental well being and familial and school bonding mediated or moderated the effects of episodic runaway behavior on first sexual intercourse.
Reference TypeConference proceeding
Book Title2008 Add Health Users Conference