USF St. Petersburg campus Faculty Publications


“Sex Is a sin”: Afro-Caribbean Parent and Teen Perspectives on Sex Conversations

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Kemesha Gabbidon

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This study characterized (a) mothers’ childhood and teenage experiences with sex conversations and (b) families’ perceptions of current parent–child sex conversations within two underserved Afro-Caribbean communities in the U.S. Fourteen dyads comprised of Haitian and Jamaican mothers and teens (aged 14–18) living in Miami, Florida, completed semi-structured interviews sharing their experiences with sex conversations. Researchers analyzed data using thematic content analysis. Mothers’ mean age was 41.85 years, (SD = 5.50) and teens’ mean age was 16.35 years, (SD = 1.31). Most mothers reported forbidden or little childhood experiences with parent–child sex conversations. They affected their sexual attitudes, behaviors, and ability to discuss sex with their children. Although some mothers benefited from educational and skill development others shared fear-based messages with their children that some teens believed adversely affected the mother–child relationship quality. Culturally appropriate, skill-based approaches are necessary to improve families’ communication self-efficacy for healthy sex conversations to occur in Afro-Caribbean families.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.