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2010 (Vol. 2, Issue: 5)
Article Information:

Adolescentsí Reproductive Motivations and Family Size Preferences in North-Western Nigeria

G. James and U.C. Isiugo-Abanihe
Corresponding Author:  Godswill James 

Key words:  Childbearing, fertility preferences, marriage, reproduction, sexuality, teenage pregnancy,
Vol. 2 , (5): 218-226
Submitted Accepted Published
2010 August, 31 2010 October, 06 2010 November, 10

Adolescent marriage and childbearing remain widespread in northern part of Nigeria despite various efforts by governments and non-governmental organizations to discourage the practice. Motivations for adolescent marriage, pregnancy, childbearing and family size remain poorly understood. Hence, this research article investigated adolescent motivations for marriage, pregnancy, childbearing and family size in North- Western Nigeria. A community-based and cross-sectional research design was adopted. Primary data were obtained using quantitative methods. A survey of 1,175 adolescents aged 12-19 years was carried out, using multi-stage sampling techniques involving states, Local Government Areas (LGAs), towns/villages, main streets, houses, households and individuals. Frequency distribution, multiple classification, chi-square, and regression analyses were used for data analysis. The results show that motivations for teenage marriage and childbearing reflect various level of influence, such as parental pressure, and socio-economic status, social norms, as well as individual needs and desires. About 45% of the adolescents desired large family size of six children or more; more male adolescents (48.3%) than female (43.8%) desired large family size. Adolescentsí gender, residence, ethnic origin, religion, educational level, knowledge and approval of contraceptive methods were significantly associated with family size preferences (p<0.05). The likelihood of large family size preference is significantly higher among adolescents whose parents had no formal education, married as teenagers, had six children or more, and practiced polygyny. Essentially, social and economic circumstances of adolescents and their parents are crucial motivations for teenage marriage and childbearing, as well as fam ily size preference in North-Western Nigeria.
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  Cite this Reference:
G. James and U.C. Isiugo-Abanihe, 2010. Adolescentsí Reproductive Motivations and Family Size Preferences in North-Western Nigeria.  Asian Journal of Medical Sciences, 2(5): 218-226.
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ISSN (Online):  2040-8773
ISSN (Print):   2040-8765
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