Kiss and tell: what do we know about pre- and early adolescent females who report dating? A pilot study.
STUDY OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the implications of dating in pre- and early adolescent females.
DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey.
SETTING: Child psychiatry clinic; pediatric clinic; family clinic.
PARTICIPANTS: Pre- and early adolescent females (n = 80) aged 11-14 and their parents.
INTERVENTION: Pre- and early adolescent females aged 11-14 and a parent were recruited during a regular clinic visit. Pre- and early adolescent females completed a survey that included measures of dating; sensation seeking; lifetime individual and peer drug use; Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder symptoms; and onset of menses. Parents were asked similar questions about their child's dating behaviors and peer relationships.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Association of early dating with individual and peer drug use, sensation seeking, aggressive behavior, and onset of menses.
RESULTS: In pre- and early adolescent females, dating regularly is associated with nicotine and alcohol use, sensation seeking, and aggressive behavior. Dating regularly is also associated with onset of menses and a younger age of onset of menses in those who had started menstruating. Parents under-report their child's dating practices and associated high-risk behaviors.
CONCLUSION: Early dating is associated with nicotine and alcohol use, sensation seeking, aggressive behavior, and early onset of menses in adolescent females. Questions about early dating are a simple and efficient way to open inquiry of both parents and children about high-risk behaviors in the clinic setting.
Published In/Presented At
Martin, C. A., Lommel, K., Cox, J., Kelly, T., Rayens, M. K., Woodring, J. H., & Omar, H. (2007). Kiss and tell: what do we know about pre- and early adolescent females who report dating? A pilot study. Journal of pediatric and adolescent gynecology, 20(1), 45–49. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpag.2006.10.008
Medicine and Health Sciences | Pediatrics
Department of Pediatrics