The debut of the sexual and contraceptive life of Romanian women

Cristina Oaneş, Babes-Bolyai University

The recent studies show that the entrance in the sexual life in Romania takes place earlier for the younger generations, as compared to the older ones, this reality being accompanied by the progressive separation of the sexual life from the context of marriage. This goes together with what happened earlier in other western European countries. To support this idea, the paper offers a short international outline about the entry into adult sexuality, from a comparative point of view. The paper aims at the analysis of the moment of sexual initiation for different age-groups and to the comparison of the tendencies for ten cohorts of women aged between 18-84 belonging to a representative sample from the national research Demography and Lifestyle of Romanian Women, carried out in 2004. In addition, the paper launches a short discussion about some socio-demographic factors that shape the initiation of the sexual life (place of residence, historical region, education and religion). The paper begins with a brief overview of the main aspects of the socio-economic context of sexuality in Romania, using data from the four successive reproductive health surveys carried out in Romania between 1993 and 2004, and from the survey on the students’ sexuality carried out in 2002. An examination of the age at the first sexual intercourse (FSI) on cohorts and of the relationship between the moment of the sexual life initiation and the socio-demographic characteristics of Romanian women follows up next. The last section of the paper examines the level of contraception used at the FSI, taking into account the different conditions of life of women in Romania. Where necessary, the paper stresses on the differences between males and females referring to the experience of FSI. The paper ends with some concluding remarks.

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Presented in Session 26: Contraception and Induced Abortion in Europe