Male Homosexual Behavior and the Effects of AIDS Education: A Study of Behavior and Safer Sex in New Zealand and South Australia

By B. R. Simon Rosser | Go to book overview

CONCLUSIONS

Consistent condom usage, not condom introduction, appears to be the key issue surrounding condoms in AIDS-prevention education. The attitudes homosexually active men hold toward condoms were found to closely relate to whether they use them and thus need to be addressed. Specifically, a belief in condom reliability and a degree of comfort in using condoms are important in ensuring condom compliance. Preventive education needs to advocate assertiveness, confidence building, and social skills training to enable individuals to insist on using condoms.


NOTES
1
"How to Have Sex in an Epidemic," words and music by Michael Callen, © 1987, published by Tops and Bottoms Music, Inc., from the album Purple Heart.
2
See Rosser [ 1988d 1989] for review. See also Kelly [ 1987]; Ross [ 1987]; Thiery [ 1987]; Tovey [ 1987].
3
In NZ and SA outlets now include gay venues (especially saunas, where all visitors are given a condom), gay functions (where free sample packs are being given away), more prominent display of condoms by pharmacists, and a greater variety of outlets that stock condoms, including general food stores and condom machines installed in hotels and nightclubs.
4
For example, the prophylactic and contraceptive efficacy of condoms has often been stressed.
5
Ross [ 1988b] found five stable factors accounted for over 50.7% of the variance in the attitudes of homosexually active men toward condom use. The subscales of this scale are based on these factors.
6
The study reported significant interactions between Ross's [ 1988b] factors and certain behavioral indices of prophylactic use, namely, factor 3 and ever having used condoms, factor 5 and condom use during anal intercourse, and factors 1, 3, 4, and 5 with condom use during fellatio. However, Ross's [ 1988b] measure of anal and oral intercourse examined frequency of condom use on a three-point scale: never, sometimes, and often. While Ross's [ 1988b] data on comparative frequency provide important information on how attitudes toward condoms affect condom compliance, because HIV can be transmitted by a single act of unsafe sex it is important to investigate absolute condom compliance with condom use that is less than absolute. This comparison was not investigated in the Ross [ 1988b] study.
7
X2 = 6.23, df = 1, p < .05. This surprising finding needs interpretation. By definition, respondents currently not participating in anal intercourse were included in the SS group, which therefore included those who have never participated in this activity. Consequently, the lifetime incidence of condom use was lower in the SS than US.
8
This is so whether measured over the previous two months, t (157) = 9.31, p <.001, or year, t (69) = 2.20, p < .05.
9
The figures were 60.7% and 89.7%, respectively, X2 = 18.69, df = 1, p < .0001. Similar results were obtained in the SA sample, where those reporting not having engaged in anal intercourse also reported less frequency of condom use over the last two months, t (56) = 5.88, p < .001, but no difference was discernible whether they had ever used a condom, 86.7% for participants and 64.7% for nonparticipants, X2 = 1.45, ns.

-121-

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