Cultural Values, Coping Strategies, and HIV Risk Behaviors in African-American and Hispanic Adolescents
Utilizing data from The National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health), the current study examined the relationship between cultural values, coping behavior, and HIV risk behaviors among African-American/Black and Hispanic/Latino adolescents (N = 437). The goal of this research was to provide the first step towards testing the construct validity of a theoretical model in which values and cultural context contribute to coping behaviors and coping, in turn, mediates the association between values and HIV risk profile. African-American participants endorsed higher levels of Africentric and religious values than did Hispanic participants and endorsed higher utilization of religious coping. Cultural values including familismo and religiosity were associated with more adaptive coping behavior and lower sexual and substance use risk behaviors across racial/ethnic groups. Results for other cultural values were inconsistent. Coping behavior predicted substance use risk behaviors but was not associated with sexual risk behaviors. Mediation was not supported except in the case of religious coping and religiosity. Implications for HIV prevention and directions for future research are discussed.
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