Relationships Survey


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Quantitative analysis of the AFAO online survey of gay men's relationships. This presentation was given at the 2008 AFAO HIV Educator's conference.

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Relationships Survey

  1. 1. Regular relationships Iryna Zablotska
  2. 2. Introduction <ul><li>2007 AFAO developed an online survey of gay men’s relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Aim: to inform the development of a national campaign on relationship agreements </li></ul>
  3. 3. Methods <ul><li>Online survey </li></ul><ul><li>Quantitative and qualitative questions </li></ul><ul><li>1521 respondents </li></ul><ul><li>46.2% ‘currently’ in a relationship and additional 9 % - in the last 6 months </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Young’ sample (62% up to age 35)‏ </li></ul>
  4. 4. Age
  5. 5. State/Territory
  6. 6. Ethnicity
  7. 7. Partner age (by age group of respondents)‏
  8. 8. Prevalence of short-term relationships by age group
  9. 9. Length of relationship (by partner age)‏
  10. 10. <ul><li>Sex outside relationships </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>345 men (48.7%) did not have sex with casual partners </li></ul><ul><li>Among these men </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>9% were allowed to have sex outside of their relationship, but they did not </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>3.5% said they would if they had such opportunity </li></ul></ul></ul>Did respondents have sex outside relationship? <ul><li>363 men (51.3%) had sex with casual partners </li></ul><ul><li>Among these men </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>51.8% - partner knew about it </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>17.9% - partner didn’t know </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>8.5% - not sure whether partner knew </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>21.8% - it happened only once or twice </li></ul></ul></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>332men (46.6%) knew partners did not have sex with casual partners </li></ul><ul><li>- Among these men, one out of 10 said partners were allowed to have sex outside relationships, but they did not </li></ul><ul><li>73 (10.3%) said they really did not know </li></ul>Did partners have sex outside relationship? <ul><li>307 men (43.1%) reported partners had sex with casual partners </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- Of these men, 26.1% suspected partners had sex outside relationship but they were not sure </li></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Sex outside relationship
  14. 14. Length of relationship and sex outside
  15. 15. Age, length of relationship and sex outside relationship
  16. 16. Having sex with other men together (threesome)‏
  17. 17. <ul><li>Talking with regular partners about sex </li></ul><ul><li>Agreements </li></ul>
  18. 18. Talking with partners about sex Men who had difficulty discussing sex inside relationship, were twice as likely to have difficulty discussing sex outside relationship as those who did not have problems talking about sex with their regular partners (PRR=2.3, 95% CI: 1.71-3.16)‏
  19. 19. Breaking agreements <ul><li>About 91% of men in relationships reported having agreements with regular partners about sex; however, a substantial proportion of these men also reported breaking agreements: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Yes, respondent had 11.4% </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Yes, his partner had 9.4% </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Yes, both had 18.5% </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>None of the partners had 55.4% </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Not sure 5.4% </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Length of relationship and breaking agreements
  21. 21. Satisfaction with the relationship and breaking agreements
  22. 22. Breaking agreements <ul><li>No difference in reporting broken agreements by respondent’s age or age difference with the partner </li></ul><ul><li>Increased likelihood of having broken agreements among men who had difficulty talking about sex outside relationship compared to those who did not have difficulty (PRR=2.1; 95%CI: 1.6-2.8)‏ </li></ul>
  23. 23. Summary <ul><li>Younger men in regular relationships may be at risk for HIV mainly due to: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A higher probability of short-term regular relationships </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Higher probability of having an older partner (from the highest HIV risk group)‏ </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>With increasing age, men in regular relationships may be at higher risk for HIV due to increasing proportions of those who have sex outside relationship and due to breaking agreements. </li></ul><ul><li>Poor communication between partners, particularly about sex outside relationships may reduce the preventive effect of risk reduction strategies. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Conclusions <ul><li>To be effective in HIV prevention, educational campaigns and health promotion efforts should focus on: </li></ul><ul><li>The role of ‘concurrent’ (short-term consecutive) regular relationships in HIV transmission </li></ul><ul><li>The role of agreements (and adhering to agreements) as safer sex practices </li></ul><ul><li>Communication skills of gay men regarding sexual practices within and outside relationships </li></ul>