Risky Sexual Behavior in College Students with and without Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Is a Positive Parent-Child Relationship Protective?
Huggins, Suzanne Lorraine
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College presents a novel context with decreased parental supervision, increased rates of alcohol and illicit drug use, and increased access to potential sexual partners. It may be especially challenging for students with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Research has shown that young adult males with ADHD engage in risky sexual behaviors (RSB); however, little to no research has been done on females or college students with ADHD, nor have prior studies examined environmental factors that may moderate risk. We examined whether ADHD is associated with RSB among college students and whether parent-child relationship quality moderated that relationship. Participants included 92 undergraduates, approximately half with ADHD and half without. Results indicated that the interaction between gender and ADHD status was associated with condom use frequency and age of first sexual experience. Further, the interaction between parent-child relationship and ADHD accounted for significant variance in number of sexual partners in the past year.