Accessing Emergency Contraception; the role of friends in the adolescent experience

Fallon, DM 2010, 'Accessing Emergency Contraception; the role of friends in the adolescent experience' , Sociology Of Health & Illness, 32 (5) , pp. 677-694.

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This paper focuses on the findings of a qualitative study that explored adolescent experiences of accessing emergency hormonal contraception. It describes how anticipated judgements and associated feelings of embarrassment and shame were dealt with through friendship. The paper outlines how, contrary to the notion of the ‘mean girl’, friends assumed crucial supporting roles which included confidante, advisor, and motivator. In some cases this included physically accompanying hesitant friends to sexual health services. The narrative brought to light how friends often kept each other on the straight and narrow, providing a sharp contrast to the image of irresponsible or shameless adolescents. Being this friend was transformative, offering a kind of reform that allowed a shift from the perceived label of promiscuous risk taker to that of informal advisor and supporter. The study concluded that friends were instrumental in the successful negotiation of the powerful discourses of risk and responsibility in the health arena and that this example of female solidarity at a time of crisis potentially plays a key role in adolescent sexual health.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Subjects / Themes > R Medicine > RT Nursing
Health and Wellbeing
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Applied Research in Health, Welfare and Policy
Schools > School of Health and Society
Journal or Publication Title: Sociology Of Health & Illness
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0141-9889
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 09 May 2011 11:41
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2022 15:51

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