Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 62–73

Maternal Predictors of Noncoital Sexual Behavior: Examining a Nationally Representative Sample of Asian and White American Adolescents Who Have Never had Sex

  • Amy G. Lam
  • Stephen T. Russell
  • Thida C. Tan
  • Sareen J. Leong
Original Paper


Current research in adolescent sexuality has largely focused on vaginal-penile intercourse, with less attention to noncoital sexual activity. This study examined how maternal factors influence the transition from virginity to noncoital behavior among White and Asian American youth who have never experienced vaginal intercourse. We conducted logistic regression analyses to examine whether traditional maternal predictors of coital sex were important in understanding noncoital sexual activity of these two populations. Waves 1 and 2 of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health were utilized. For White Americans (= 3,926), direct and indirect maternal factors were associated with noncoital sexual involvement: maternal support, control, mother–child communication about sex, and adolescents’ perceptions of maternal approval of sex. In contrast, only maternal support was associated with the onset of noncoital sexual behavior for Asian Americans (= 611). The study underscores the need to explore culturally specific factors that may influence Asian American adolescent noncoital sexual behaviors.


Asian American adolescents Noncoital sex Maternal predictors 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amy G. Lam
    • 1
  • Stephen T. Russell
    • 2
  • Thida C. Tan
    • 3
  • Sareen J. Leong
    • 4
  1. 1.National Asian Pacific American Women’s ForumWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.John and Doris Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences University of ArizonaTusconUSA
  3. 3.The Center for Applied Local ResearchRichmondUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychologyUniversity of California DavisUSA

Personalised recommendations