Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 903–911 | Cite as

Resolution of Unwanted Pregnancy During Adolescence Through Abortion Versus Childbirth: Individual and Family Predictors and Psychological Consequences

  • Priscilla K. ColemanEmail author
Original Paper


Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, various demographic, psychological, educational, and family variables were explored as predictors of pregnancy resolution. Only 2 of the 17 variables examined were significantly associated with pregnancy resolution (risk-taking and the desire to leave home). After controlling for these variables, adolescents who aborted an unwanted pregnancy were more inclined than adolescents who delivered to seek psychological counseling and they reported more frequent problems sleeping and more frequent marijuana use. No significant differences were observed for cigarette smoking, frequency of alcohol use, and problems with parents based on alcohol use after the controls were instituted; however without controls, significant associations were observed, underscoring the importance of the use of psychological and situational controls in studies of the consequences of abortion. The information derived from this study is potentially useful to parents and professionals who provide guidance to adolescents regarding pregnancy resolution.


Unwanted pregnancy Adolescent parenting Abortion 



This research is based on data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), directed by J. Richard Udry, Kenan Professor of Maternal and Child Health and Sociology and a fellow of the Carolina Population Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Funding for the study is provided by NICHD and 17 other federal agencies.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Human Development and Family StudiesBowling Green State University, 16D Family and Consumer Sciences BuildingBowling GreenUSA

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