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Attitudes of parents in the role of a father in Turkey toward child sex education and their sexual communication with their children

Published:December 29, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pedn.2022.12.014

      Highlights

      • More than half of the fathers did not receive sex education in their childhood.
      • The ASTSE score was higher in fathers with a son and university and higher education degree.
      • The ASTSE score was higher in fathers receiving sex education in their childhood and those receiving it from their fathers.
      • There is a relationship between fathers' parental role attitudes toward sex education and their sexual communication.

      Abstract

      Background and purpose

      The study aimed to evaluate the attitudes of parents in the role of a father in Turkey toward child sex education and their sexual communication with their children.

      Methods

      This descriptive and cross-sectional study was conducted with the fathers of children in the pediatric outpatient clinic at a state hospital between December 30, 2021, and April 15, 2022. The study was reported based on STROBE. The data were collected from 297 fathers using the Descriptive Information Form, the Attitudes Scale Toward Sex education (ASTSE), and the Sexual Communication Scale for Parents(SCSP).

      Results

      Sample statistics demonstrate that 67.7% of the participants did not receive sex education in their childhood, and 57.4% stated that their children received sex education only from their mothers. Higher attitudes toward sexual education were found in the fathers with a university or higher education degree (χ2 = 15.396; p < 0.01), and those giving sex education to their children (χ2 = 18.388;p < 0.001). Higher total scores were obtained on the sexual communication scale by fathers with university and higher education degrees (χ2 = 12.898;p < 0.01) and those who received sex education in their childhood (t = 2.330;p = 0.021). There is a highly significant positive correlation between the mean scores of the role of a parent subscale of the ASTSE and the mean total score of the SCSP (r = 0.81;p < 0.001).

      Conclusions

      There is a positive correlation between fathers' parental role attitudes toward sex education and their sexual communication with their children.

      Practice implications

      Supporting fathers' sexual communication with their children can positively affect fathers' attitudes and communication toward sex education.

      Keywords

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