More prevention effort is required as the HIV epidemic increases among gay and transgender African American youth. Using ecological systems theory and an integrative model of behaviour change, this study examines the sexual behaviour of Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected and transgender African American young people as embedded within the unique social and structural environments affecting this population.
Also examined is the important role played by mobile technology in the social and sexual lives of individuals. Seven focus groups were conducted with 54 African American young adults in a northeastern U.
The findings provide a rich examination of the social and sexual lives of gay and transgender African American youth, focusing on the social environment and the impact of the environment on sexual risk behaviour. Although the overall incidence of HIV in the USA was relatively stable from toa significant increase in incidence occurred among people aged 13—29 years old Prejean et al.
For transwomen male to female transgender personsHIV prevalence rates are equal to or higher than that of men who have sex with men, with African American exhibited higher levels of infection Herbst et al.
However, HIV disparities faced by Black men who have sex with men are not adequately explained by individual sexual behaviours, as Black gay men report similar rates of unprotected anal intercourseas other racial groups Harawa et al.
It is critical therefore to examine the unique social and structural factors influencing and constraining individual behaviour. The social and structural context of African American gay and transgender youth can be viewed through the lens of intersectionality Crenshaw ; Collinswhich suggests that the oppression encountered by young Black men who have sex with men cannot simply be understood by adding the effects of racism and homophobia. Instead, the intersections of multiple modes create a unique and amplified oppression, which requires purposive investigation Anderson and McCormack Scholars have made significant inroads into examining life of youth at this intersection Foster et al.
Within this population, there is significant Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected and fluidity around constructions of masculinity, sexuality and gender identity.
Still, the research suggests similarities in experiences of racial and sexual oppression. Theorists discussing intersectionality argue that what is real and shared is the effect of racial and sexual discrimination; more than the ascription of racial and sexual social categories.
Therefore intra-community fluidity and heterogeneity does not diminish the shared experience of oppression Collins ; Anderson and McCormack Transwomen also face challenges related to intimate partner violence, rejection, and victimisation Lenning and Buist, ; Brennan et al.
Syndemic theory suggests that these concurrent challenges can create a social environment in which HIV risk behaviour can thrive Brennan et al. The social construction of masculinity, the absence of a father figure, and the mental health toll of homophobia within the black community, all have implications for HIV risk behaviour Fields et al.
Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected This study aims to contribute to the understanding of individual, social, and structural correlates of prevention behaviours to aid in the design interventions that engage with the socio-cultural context of LGBT young people of colour. When developing the focus group script, we used the integrative model of behaviour change as a theoretical foundation to systemically explore predictors of risky sexual behaviour Fishbein and Yzer According to this model, engagement in risky sexual behaviour is a function of intentions, attitudes toward the behaviour, normative perceptions about the behaviour, and perceived self-efficacy.
To understand the nature of environmental constraints and contextual factors beyond individual cognitions, we used ecological systems theory Bronfenbrenner Ecological systems theory, or the socio-ecological approach, provides a framework with which to examine individual behaviour from within the contexts of interpersonal, community-level, and cultural structures: Mesosystems are the interplay between two levels, and exosystems are systems that influence the individual but over which that individual can exercise no direct control, such as disease prevalence rates.
Microsystems are typified by interpersonal relationships or face-to-face interactions. It allows us to view individual behaviour within a social context, as well as the interplay between multiple systems and behaviour DiClemente et al. As well, there has been a call for scholars to employ the socioecological approach in observational studies of sexual health among young people, to provide additional data for future integration into effective prevention efforts e.
Latkin and Knowlton ; Salazar et al. These theoretical frameworks have been used extensively in whole or in part in sexual health research with adolescents, emerging adults, minority and LGBT populations Hovell et al. By combining an individual behaviour change framework with the socio-ecological model, this study approaches HIV risk behaviour as a multilevel challenge, requiring individual, social and structural interventions.
We situate the findings in these frameworks as well as those suggested by intersectionality theory. Eligible participants self-identified as being born male, African American, were between the ages of 18 and 24 years and reported recent sexual intercourse with a man.
Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected included gay and transgender adults who identified as being born male. During the focus groups, individuals were addressed using pronouns gendered on the basis of presentation as male or female.
Recruitment was conducted in partnership with four local AIDS service organisations. Staff at the organisations identified people who expressed interest and members of the research team Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected potential participants, screened them for eligibility and if eligible, scheduled them to participate in a focus group.
In addition, researchers conducted on site recruitment at the organisations.
We conducted seven focus groups with four to ten participants per group, with a total of 54 participants. Before participating in a focus group, individuals completed a three-page self-administered questionnaire which included items on age, race, and sexual health and recent behaviour. The focus groups were conducted using a semistructured interview guide.
The script incorporated questions to elicit socio-cultural context, including environment, social relationships, health concerns, career goals, future aspirations, and technology use. The script also included theoretical constructs from the integrative model related to attitude, normative beliefs and self-efficacy related to sexual risk behaviour. Groups were co-moderated by the lead researcher and second experienced facilitator.
Participants were encouraged to use pseudonyms throughout the session.
Sessions were audio recorded, and a note-taker recorded detailed notes during each session. Focus groups were audio recorded and transcribed verbatim.
The primary investigator integrated the transcribed data with memos taken during the focus groups. Codes were developed by the primary investigator a priori based on the theoretical framework. Briefly this approach takes the transcribed data, narrows it down to the relevant text most related to the specific research questions, and searches this text for repeating ideas from which themes emerged.
Upon completion of this process, the second researcher also reviewed the transcripts using the same methodology. Results were then checked Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected discrepancies and to validate findings. Once consensus was reached, the themes were discussed to identify potential relationships between themes and the relationship of themes to the initial research questions with the goal of bridging the research agenda with the subjective experiences of the participants.
This process occurred throughout the data gathering period as well as at the conclusion as the initial findings informed the probes in subsequent focus groups. Descriptive statistics and frequency counts drawn from the questionnaire were used to describe the study samples.
Participant demographics are drawn from 50 of the 54 participants who completed the brief pre-focus group questionnaire. The four participants who did not complete the questionnaire did meet the eligibility criteria and are included in the findings section. Four of the participants across 3 focus groups identified as transgender.
We organised the focus group findings in three separate but overlapping contexts: The gay family was discussed heavily and in positive terms. These families, termed fictive or chosen families in the literature, are families organised around choice, rather than biology and provide emotional and tangible support Oswald ; Weston They describe their gay families as an important part of their lives, often influencing their decisions.
Participants explained that their gay family offered Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected, advice, support, and protection, which helped them to avoid risky sexual and social behaviour. Many participants reported that their gay parents encouraged behaviours such as staying in school, going to college, keeping a job, finding good friends in the scene, and practicing safe sex.
The gay scene was described in terms of both social and geographic terms.
Places in the gay scene include balls, clubs, and house parties, particular neighbourhoods and streets, and AIDS service organisations. Gay life is not real life. It takes you on a fantasy ride. Depending upon the group of people you hang around, you get into certain things. Some people come out to the wrong people Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected get caught in that lifestyle. There is another whole entire life: Half of them drop out of high school and are prostitutes—not using condoms or protection—and do drugs with their clients, which make them higher risk.
This quote illustrates the multidimensionality of the scene and the influence of peer-group behaviour on the coming-out trajectory. The ballroom scene is major component of African American gay life Arnold Participants described balls as regular performance events, varying in size and often occurring very late at night. Ballroom culture extends beyond the balls themselves, with dance styles, local notoriety, distributed videos, and houses. Balls also extend to the digital world, with the regular posting Dark africans micheal and arthur unprotected viewing of ball videos and dance battles online.
Although not all young people participate in balls, all the participants in our focus groups were familiar with ballroom culture. They described the ball scene as an elaborate social arena where sex, marijuana, ecstasy, and PCP are readily available.
Mat: I am a very open and calm person. I would be happy to meet an optimistic person like me. I am good at managing money and investing. I am an easy-going and gentle lady who sincerely wishes to find her beloved man.
They also linked several risky behaviours with ballroom culture, including sex work, transactional sex, and violence. Most participants differentiated between the gay scene and ballroom culture; although the distinction was often described with some fluidity:. You have two types of scenes: Ballroom is like Hollywood, fame, glamor, bright light—got turned out to the ballroom, got hooked.
They just started missing school, started travelling and calling out from work just to travel to the ballroom, and lost their job.
Their only means of money is prostitution—a lot of young people now are not going to wait for a paycheck. Cash is fast money.