The Influence of Dating and Premarital Sex on Academic Achievement of Senior Secondary Schools in Nigeria (A Case Study of Abia State)
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Dating and pre-marital sex has given birth to ceaseless questions, being known as a practice that is hugely affected by the time, period, social conditions, construct, biology, cultural nuns and institutional frame that wraps around the people. Dating is an act that is practiced and known by too many people, but just a few are acquainted by or knows the exact meaning. Apparently, it is an activity that a good number of college aged students are interested and engaged in. According to Longman English Dictionary of Contemporary English, dating is a romantic relationship with someone. Another dictionary, Collins Dictionary defined dating as appointment between two different sexes or more. Talking of Pre-marital sex, it means having sexual intercourse with the opposite sex before marriage or at an illegal age. According to Mache (1981), the young zest or desire for love and to be love as a result of peer-pressure oftentimes leads to premarital sex, and it is perceived by youth as fun, way of life and that when you really like someone, you show it by having sex and it is a natural thing to desire to be intimate.
Over the years, researches have been done on premarital sex and have been unveiled that youth, specifically the girls engage in sex before marriage because they want to know how well or bad their partner is in bed, etc, though it is not biblical. A good percent of both male and female presume that having sex proved your man-hood or womanhood. This has led many into this practice because they do not want to be seen as the odd one.They fall for the pressure to experience what sexual relationship is like. Years back, Psychologists found out that there are two reasons to a person falling in love. The first step is from the desire to escape; the second is from internal discontent, grows the desire and ability to fall in love with another person. On the other hand, differentiating between welfare while immature love explicit the beloved in other to satisfy his/her needs.
In resent times, dating was informal, people involved in the actneed not to be formal with each other but nowadays, the youths introduced the policies of dating. Cars also have a significant effect on dating and premarital sex. Once you have a car, you and your so called spouse will have more privacy and intimacy away from the sharp eyes and mouths of onlookers. Studies showed that from 1960’s till date, there have been some huge changes. Dating a female has had a huge effect on dating and premarital sex, power is now being bestowed on woman, they now realize they are more than just a wife but also a human being. The introduction and implementation of birth control measures maximizes the rate of premarital sex. The average age to start having sexual intercourse ranges between 13 and 14, Moone (1992) for males and females, another researcher reported that 85% of males and 69% of females have engaged in dating and premarital sex. Sociologists noted that the concept of a romantic love did not ever exist due to industrial revolution of 18th and 19th century. After the industrial revolution, people did not rely on one another as much to survive when idea of romantic love first came into existence. Dating at a young age is characterized by youth of nowadays; nowadays it is seen as fun and is practiced for a companionship rather than a serious activity for the purpose of finding a lifelong partner. Most girls and boys are not opportune or fortunate to be born into a family were the parents will shower them with so much love that they won’t rely on a man’s/girl’s confession of love to him/her to feel loved, this alone or single handedly lures 95% of youths into the act of dating which frequently leads to premarital sex.
The media have a direct influence on dating habit and views about the opposite sex. Male controlled media have enhanced an environment in which to define woman as sex object Ollenburger and Moore (1992), movies and television serve to create and maintained social beliefs about the sex. There are many biological factors that helps determined ones dating habits, biological make-up, as well as chemical actions plays a major role in who one is attracted to. There isn’t much information on how they work, but hormones are known to be a leading factor in establishing sex drive. A study of love attractiveness and sex drive carried out by Wilson and Nins (1976) pointed out that “Sex drives are chemical release by the gonalds and other glands circulates through the blood back to brain, they influence our biological readiness for production attractiveness to potential partners and receptiveness to them. Another chemical that affect dating and pre-marital sex is a aphrodisiacs. It enhance sexual desire, some of these substances are Caviar, Oysters, BV Vitamins E, and Chocolate. All unfounded claim”. The timing of sexual initiations and subsequent sensual behaviour is influence by many factors such as;
Marital and child bearing of parents acting as a role model, including experience of divorce, living arrangement and behaviour towards the opposite sex have been identified as being impacted (Ostrov et al., 1985) Girls from single parent families tend to become sexually active, however, it is not dear if lack of supervision of behaviour modeling is at the core.
Parental supervision has impact on adolescent girls but not so much on a male child. Fingeman (1989) non authoritarian parenting has been found to be associated with non virginity I n youth as a result of permissiveness and no parental support. Parental attitude and view. Moore et al., (1991) found that parents who strong traditional views about pre-marital sex and communicated some to their children were the only group able to infleucen their children’s sexual behaviour.
Relationship with the family: Lack of attentive and nurturing parent is linked to early sexual activity and unplanned teenage pregnancies peer association is closely linked with low academic performance; Ohanession and Crackett (1993) suggested that academic achievement by girls predicted postponed sexual activity.
Educational goals have been identified as impacting on sexual activity with high achievers having lower rate of dating and pre-marital sex, amongst male and female students of urban and rural areas.
However, educational factors are often mediated by other influence such as coming from a well to do family and having plans for the future peer association has been indicated as one of the strongest predictors of adolescent sexual behaviourDiablasio and Benda (1999) stated that youth who do not engage in sex, while those that are sexually active tend to believe that their friends are sexually active as well. Everyone has a system a sexual sensors consisting of specialized nerves ending that responds to sexual stimulus all over the body, sexual arousal or excitement may begin with sex related though, felling arousal or touching or even smell.
The purpose of sex education therefore is to provide students with adequate knowledge of their own physical, mental and emotional maturation process as related to sex. The knowledge of sex education would eliminate fear and anxiety to individual sexual adjustment and therefore help him/her to develop an understanding attitude sexual promiscuity, teenage regency; normal abortion and school dropout. There are all effect of dating and premarital sex which originated from lack of sex education which subsequently affect academic performance, there’s need for counseling which would produce behaviour change.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM
There is a link between sexual activities and academic performance, as the world changes, so do our lives, this is true of dating and pre-marital sex; one can observe the drastic changes in dating, rituals and pre-marital sex.
A sexologist, Tiefer (1995) stated that sex is not a natural act, Wilson and Nias (1976) also stated that sex hormones are increase when the brain is confronted by sexual arousing stimuli and decrease when confronted with fear, anxiety, stress. This is probably because hormone secreted is controlled by the pituitary gland which has connections to the hypothalam us’ in the brain, pheromones is another chemical that plays important role dating.
These hormones help to regulate and control female menstrual cycle, which in turn affected ovulation, emotion, performances and hormonal level in the body. When these happen, they become seemingly comfortable to express their feelings toward each other, if the youths are allowed to interact romantically without supervision by parents, it will certainly affect their academic performance.
Because of the possible out-come, from it premarital sex and dating evolving from the youth, failure to discuss that issue of sex and sexuality education with our children, leads to them dating secretly because of the natural tendency to do so coupe with environmental factors. These secrecy and taboos surrounding the issue of sex leads to high incidence of teenage sexual tragedies, dating and pre-marital sex involve the emotional, physical, social, psychological and educational, aspect of the individual health wise, it may lead to STDs, HIV/AIDs, some student use the academic for love talks, outing and seeking for the seemingly happiness of each other. This type of relationship will certainly affect academic performance thereby leading dropping out from school.
This unfortunate situation abounds among urban and rural secondary schools students and certainly needs counseling intervention to redress such ugly trend. Against this background, the study investigates effects of dating and pre-marital sex on academic performances of urban and rural students.
1.3 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of dating and pre-marital sex on academic performance of students in urban and rural secondary school specifically; the study has the following objectives:
1. To examine the influence of sex education on pre-marital sex of students.
2. To assess the difference in pre-marital sex between urban and rural students.
3. To also determine the relationship between pre-marital sex and academic performance of students.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following research questions guides the study:
1. Does sex education have any influence on pre-marital sex?
2. Does any difference exist between urban and rural students in their pre-marital sex activities?
3. Does any relationship exist between pre-marital sex and academic performance of students?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES
H0: Dating and pre marital sex does not have an influence on academic achievement of senior secondary school students.
H1: Dating and pre marital sex have an influence on academic achievement of senior secondary school students.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is expected that the study will be beneficial to parent s, students, educators, government and others in general. The study suggests that “all information and help regarding sex education should be given to students as it relates to the provision of factual knowledge about male/female reproductive structures, functions, structural charged and the process of reproduction.
Secondly, the study will help the Government consider the inductive sexs education in the school curriculum.
Thirdly, it is a known fact that no one can stop young people from having sex, hence the need for comprehensive sex education as this will provide opportunity for questions explorations and assessment of their sexual attitudes.
Lastly, it will help young people to develop interpersonal skills in communication decision making, assertiveness and peer refusal skills as well as the ability to create a satisfying relationship in adolescent and adulthood thereby preventing teenage sexual tragedies.
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The study was delimited to the effect of pre-marital sex academic performance of urban rural secondary school. Students in Ikot Abasi Local Government Area. It does not include students in tertiary or primary institution the generation the study therefore be for the secondary school students only.
1.8 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The only limitation to the study was time factor to have reached out to all Secondary Schools in Ikot Abasi Local Government Area.
1.9 ASSUMPTIONS OF THE STUDY
1. It is assumed that pre-marital sexs has a lot of influence on academic performance of students.
2. Parents assume that young people walking together always may lead to pre-marital sexs.
3. It is generally assumed that others similar to oneself will be more pivotal as a source of influence.
1.10 DEFINITION OF TERMS
• Dating: To have a romantic relationship with someone.
• Pre-marital sex: Having sexual intercourse before marriage.
• Sex/sexual intercourse: The activity in which male and female join their sexual organs to create a body or for pleasure.
• Assertiveness: Behaving in a confident way so that people notice you.
• Assessment: A process in which you make a judgment about a person or situation.
• Exploration: An examination or discussion of something to find out more about it.
• Sexuality: The things that people do and feel that are connected with their desire or ability to have sexs.
• Exploit: To treat someone unfairly in order to get or an advantage of yourself.
• Industrial Revolution: The period especially in the 18th to 19th centuries when machines were invented and the first factory established.
• Feminism: The belief that woman should haves the same rights and opportunities as men.
• Ritual: Something that is don in fixed and expected was but without real meaning or sincerity.
• Sexology: A person who studies sexual behaviour especially among humans.
• Romantic: Showing strong feeling of love and like; doing things that are connected with love.
• Obligation: A moral or legal duty to do something.
• Cradle: To hold something gentle in your hands or arms.
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