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 Native Teen Voices
 

 

Sexual Experiences

Birth Control

Feelings about Pregnancy

How Youth Spent
    their Time

Feelings about Self,
    School, Parents and
    the Future

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Native Teen Voices: Feelings About Self

About half of young people in the U.S. have ever had sexual intercourse by the time they are 19.  Participants in Native Teen Voices are similar:  59% of the teens reported ever having had sexual intercourse.   Of those who reported ever having had sex, the average age of the first experience for both boys and girls was between 14-16 years of age. 

There is a difference between having ever had sex and having recent or current experience.  Among NTV participants, 70% of the sexually experienced reported having had sex in the 3 months preceding the survey.

Among the sexually experienced youth, older males had the most lifetime sexual partners.  Half of the 16-18 year-old males reported 5 or more partners, while over half of 16-18 year-old females reported 4 or more partners.  Fifty percent of the sexually experienced males and females between the ages of 13-15 years reported 1 or 2 sexual partners.

Feelings about Self
Life satisfaction
Ability to plan ahead
Feeling they can make things
     better when things go wrong
Anticipate a good life as an adult
 Ability to say “no” when someone
     wants them to do something
      wrong or dangerous
Feelings about responsibilities
Feeling safe at home
- ;Dealing with problems
School
Experiences with school
Future education plans
Parents
Who are the parents?
Communication with
      Parents

Feelings about Self

Life satisfaction
All youth (n=148) were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, “I am satisfied with how things are going in my life.” 
Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five-point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that they were satisfied with their lives.

  • No females aged 16-18, or males in either age group reported strong disagreement that they were satisfied with their lives
  • Females aged 16-18 (5.4%) and males 16-18 (57.9%) were most likely to report agreement that they were satisfied with their lives
  • Males 16-18 were most likely to report strong agreement (35.1%) that they were satisfied with their lives

Graph: Life satisfaction- males

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Graph: Life satisfaction - female

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ability to plan ahead
All youth (n=148) were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, “I am good at planning ahead.” 
Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five-point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that they were good at planning ahead.

  • Males and females in both age groups were most likely to report agreement
  • Males aged 16-18 were the most likely to report strong disagreement (8.1%)
  • Females aged 13-15 were the most likely to report disagreement (21.4%)
  • Females aged 16-18 were the most likely to report strong agreement (29.0%)
    Graph: Good at planning ahead

Feeling they can make things better when things go wrong
All youth (n=148) were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, “When things go bad for me, I am good at finding a way to make things better.” 
Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that they were able to find ways to make things better.

  • Females 16-18 and males in both age groups were most likely to report agreement
  • Females aged 13-15 were most likely to reported being not sure (45.2%)
  • Females aged 16-18 were the most likely to report strong agreement (18.9%)
Graph: Good at making things better

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Anticipate a good life as an adult
All youth (n=148) were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, “When I am an adult, I will have a good life.”  Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five- point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that they would have a good life as an adult.

  • Females aged 13-15 were the most likely to report being not sure (54.8%) that they would have a good life as an adult, followed by older females (41.9%)
  • Females aged 16-18 tended to report either being not sure (41.9%) or strong agreement (41.9%) that they would have a good life as an adult
  • Males aged 16-18 tended to report either being not sure (35.1%) or strong agreement (35.1%) that they would have a good life as an adult

Graph: Agreement they will have a good life when adult

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ability to say “no” when someone wants them to do something wrong or dangerous
All youth (n=148) were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, It is easy for me to say ‘no’ when someone wants me to do something I know is wrong or dangerous.”  Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five-point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that it is easy to say “no” to something wrong or dangerous.

  • No females in either age groups reported strong disagreement that they could say NO while 7.9% of males aged 13-15 and 8.1% of males aged 16-18 reported strong disagreement about their ability to say NO if asked to do something wrong or dangerous
  • Females aged 16-18 were most likely to report strong agreement (48.4%) that they could say NO if asked to do something wrong or dangerous
  • Males aged 13-15 were most likely to report feeling not sure (34.2%) that they could say NO if asked to do something wrong or dangerous

Graph: Agrement that is easy to say no

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feelings about responsibilities
All youth were asked to report how strongly they agreed with the statement, “I feel like I have too many responsibilities for someone my age.” 
Respondents were asked to rate agreement using a five-point scale that ranged from strongly disagree to strongly agree that they have too many responsibilities.  Two people did not answer this question.

  • Males aged 16-18 were most likely to report strong agreement (35.1%) that they had too many responsibilities for their age
  • Females aged 16-18 were most likely to report strong disagreement (9.7%) that they had too many responsibilities for their age
  • Males aged 13-15 were most likely to report being not sure (34.2%) if they had too many responsibilities for their age

 Graph: Too many responsibilities


Feeling safe at home
All youth were asked, How often do you feel safe in your own home?” 
Respondents were give four possible responses:  never, sometimes, usually, and always.  Four people did not answer this question.

  • 68.9% of males who answered and 71.4% of females who answered reported that they ALWAYS felt safe in their own home
  • Males aged 16-18 were most likely to report NEVER feeling safe at home (5.4%) as well as the most likely to report only feeling safe SOMETIMES (8.1%)
Graph: Feel save in own home


Dealing with problems
All youth (n=148) were asked, When you have a problem, what do you do to feel better?” 
Respondents were given 22 possible answers choices and instructed to: “Mark ALL that are true for you.”

Note: the researchers created the responses, so there may have been other relevant responses not captured by this survey

  • Among females aged 13-15, the most common ways to deal with problems were: listen to music (91%), talk with a friend (91%), sit and think (88%), watch TV or movies (74%), and sleep (62%)
  • Among females aged 16-18, the most common ways to deal with problems were: listen to music (90%), talk with a friend (90%), sit and think (84%), go to sleep (71%), and talk with a family member (58%)
  • Among males aged 13-15, the most common ways to deal with problems were: listen to music (90%), play video games (82%), watch TV or movies (82%), go to sleep (71%), sit and think (68%), and exercise or sports (68%)
  • Among males aged 16-18, the most common ways to deal with problems were: listen to music (87%), play video games (68%), sit and think (68%), smoke weed/ marijuana (62%), and sleep (57%)
  • 13% of 13-15 year-old males and 49% of 16-18 year-old males reported that they smoked cigarettes to deal with problems
  • 5% of 13-15 year-old males and 41% of 16-18 year-old males reported drinking alcohol to deal with problems

Percentage of youth who engage in activities to help deal with problems, by age and sex, NTV, 2004

 

Females

Males

13-15

16-18

13-15

16-18

Spend time with family

50%

54.8%

52.6%

35.1%

Listen to music

90.5%

90.3%

89.5%

86.5%

Go to sleep

61.9%

70.9%

71.1%

56.8%

Pick a fight

21.4%

16.1%

13.2%

24.3%

Break/ damage things

26.2%

19.4%

28.95%

24.3%

Exercise or sports

45.2%

22.6%

68.4%

54.1%

Read

28.6%

32.3%

18.4%

8.1%

Play video games

33.3%

19.4%

81.6%

67.6%

Smoke cigarettes

26.2%

45.2%

13.2%

48.7%

Smoke weed/ marijuana

30.9%

48.4%

34.2%

62.2%

Go to sweat lodge/ ceremony

7.1%

6.5%

18.4%

18.9%

Talk with a friend

90.5%

90.3%

57.9%

54.1%

Talk with an adult

38.1%

45.2%

39.5%

27.0%

Talk with an elder

23.8%

29.0%

31.6%

21.6%

Talk with a family member

57.1%

58.1%

42.1%

35.1%

Eat too much

30.9%

22.6%

10.5%

10.8%

Watch TV or movies

73.8%

54.8%

81.6%

51.4%

Sit and think (chill, daydream)

88.1%

83.9%

68.4%

67.6%

Drink (beer, wine, or liquor)

16.7%

35.5%

5.3%

40.5%

Pray

16.7%

16.1%

13.2%

16.2%

Write down thoughts (journal or poetry)

33.3%

45.2%

13.2%

13.5%

Other

16.7%

16.1%

5.3%

5.4%

 

School:  Experiences, Feelings, and Future Goals

Youth were asked several questions about the experience with school and what their educational goals were after school.  These questions were answered by the 135 participants who were enrolled in school (one participant had dropped out and 12 had graduated from high school).

Experiences with school
  • About two-thirds of the youth reported that their grades were similar to those of other students (i.e., they were average students)
  • About one-quarter of the youth reported that they liked school a lot
  • About one-quarter of the 16-18 yr old females and one-third of the 16-18 yr old males had repeated at least one grade or been held back one grade
  • About one-half of the females and one-third of the males reported they had not skipped a full day of school in the past school year

Graph: usual grades

Graph: feelings about school

Graph: Youth who report repeating a grade

Graph: Frequency of skipping a full day of school

Future education plans
  • About 90% of the 13-15 yr-olds plan to go to college, but the percentage of those who have college plans decrease with age, more so for males than females
  • About one-half of the youth are sure they will achieve their future education plans

Graph: School plans


Graph: Belief that they will succeed

Parents:  Characteristics and Communication

Who are the parents?
  • About 20% of the females and one-quarter of the males lived with both parents during the 6 months preceding the survey.
Graph: who lived with whom - female

Graph: Lived with - males

Graph: Mother's level of education

Graph: Age mother had first baby

Communication with Parents
NTV participants were given a series of statements about parental communication and were asked to indicate how relevant the statements were to their lives.  Generally, a majority of participants agreed that communication with their parents was good and females tended to report slightly more communication and discipline than did males.  The following provide the distribution of responses to the questions about parental communication.

  • About 30% of the male participants indicated that their parents did not have clear rules about what they could do.  More than 90% of the 13-15 year-old females reported their parents had clear rules.
  • About one-third of 16-18 year-old males said they would be punished for breaking their parent’s rules.
  • The majority of youth (about one-half to three-quarters) agree with the following statements:  that their parents know most of their friends, their parents make them feel useful, their parents often tell them that they love them, their parents understand them, and that they have lots of good conversations with their parents. 
  • About one-half of the females and one-quarter of the males reported that their parents ALWAYS asked them where they are going and with whom.

Graph: parents have clear rules 

Graph: if I break the rules I am punished

Graph: youth who agree with the following statements

 

Graph: parents ask who/where going

 

 
 
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