Sibling Relationship, Family, and Genetic Factors in Sibling Similarity in Sexual Risk

Susan M. McHale, Joanna Bissell, Ji Yeon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations

Abstract

Siblings' risky attitudes toward sex and pregnancy and risky sexual behavior were studied in 1583 dyads from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. We tested moderators of the links between 2 siblings' reports of sexual risk as well as mediators of the links between siblings' genetic similarity and similarity in their sexual risk. Siblings' sexual risk reports were correlated, and consistent with social learning predictions, associations were stronger between siblings with close relationships and in same-gender dyads and, to a lesser extent, between more genetically similar siblings and those closer in age. Consistent with behavior genetics' hypotheses about gene-environment correlations, similarity in family warmth and sibling relationship closeness mediated associations between siblings' genetic similarity and similarity in their sexual risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)562-572
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Volume23
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)

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