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Authors: Gbogbo, Sitsofe
Title: Transition to parenthood in adolescence: Lived experiences in the Hohoe Municipality of Ghana
Online publication date: 8-Sep-2021
Language: english
Abstract: SUMMARY Background to the study: Studies have revealed that adolescents transitioning into early parenthood experience different challenges due to financial uncertainty, inadequate social support structures, stigmatization within their communities, and other uncertainties because of their age. Additionally, the persistent silence of adolescent parents’ voices may possibly be the most negative of all experiences for adolescents transitioning into early parenthood. The necessity to recognize the opinions of pregnant adolescents and adolescent parents as they experience the transition to parenthood is utmost to my thesis. There is plenty of literature that examined and reported findings concerning adolescent pregnancy and parenting. Nevertheless, not many studies have precisely researched the lived experiences of both female and male adolescents transitioning into parenthood. My study will stipulate a podium for pregnant adolescents and adolescent parents in the Hohoe Municipality of Ghana to narrate the situations in which they find themselves, their source of social support, and how they cope during their transition into early parenthood. Objective: The main objective of my study was to provide a detailed phenomenological description of the lived experiences of pregnant adolescent and adolescent parents in the Hohoe Municipality of Ghana. The study inquired into how adolescents in the Hohoe Municipality made sense of their transitioning phase into early parenthood, how being pregnant adolescents or adolescent parents affected their lives, which social support systems were available for them and which coping strategies they adopted in order to transition well into adolescent parenthood. Theoretical Framework: My study was guided by the Schlossberg’s transition theory and stipulated the perspective to interpret the phenomena of self, situation, strategy, and support that facilitated a further understanding of the adolescents’ transition phase to early parenthood. Through this transition theory, I endeavored to explain a detailed understanding of pregnant adolescents’ and adolescent parents’ lived experiences and demonstrated how their transition to early parenthood can be better appreciated through their uniquely shared narratives. Methodology: My study adopted a qualitative research methodology. An interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) was used to guide my data collection, coding and analysis. Ethical approval was granted by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) of the Ghana Health Service Ethics Review Committee before I started the empirical data collection. Data was collected through 18 semi-structured in-depth interviews (10 female adolescents and 8 male adolescents). Data was recorded digitally, transcribed, coded and analyzed with the assistance of the MAXQDA qualitative data analysis software. Results: The findings are presented in two parts, in chapters 5 and 6. The transcriptions of 18 participants (10 females and 8 males) including interviews and field notes were used to develop superordinate themes. These superordinate themes were: news of pregnancy, adolescent motherhood, social support and coping strategies for female adolescents, and for male adolescents the superordinate themes generated were: the journey of becoming a father, adolescent fatherhood, social support, and coping strategies. The stories of the pregnant adolescents and adolescent parents are interpreted using the Schlossberg’s transition theory to demonstrate how their transition into early parenthood offered them a different understanding of life and this triggered other anxieties such as poverty, level of education, and intergenerational outcome. Transitioning into early parenthood was considered as a major turning point in the lives of the participants as it shaped their lives, identity, and sense of self. The participants reported that the kind of support they received enabled them to cope well with stressful situations, to obtain the exact personality of being a parent, the participants admitted that there was the need to improve their relationship with their parents and other family members because of the support given them. It was revealed that the support they received went a long way to reduce parental anxieties and thus increasing their self-esteem, self-confidence, and life satisfaction as pregnant adolescents or adolescent parents. Participants focused on reducing the pressure of their transition to early parenthood by engaging in certain practices as a form of coping strategies. Conclusions and Recommendations: Findings show that the pregnant adolescents and adolescent parents endeavored to utilize their assets of situation, self, and strategies to control the liabilities of support to enable them to modify their behavior to accept their responsibility as parents throughout their transition phase. Though most adolescents encounter a lot of challenges with adapting to becoming parents, the majority narrated that though they faced difficulties they did not allow their struggles to overcome them. It is therefore recommended that policymakers concentrate on building shared accountability which will provide a shift in having a better understanding of the needs of adolescents who experience challenges during their transition phase to adolescent parenthood.  
DDC: 370 Erziehung
370 Education
Institution: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Department: FB 02 Sozialwiss., Medien u. Sport
Place: Mainz
Version: Original work
Publication type: Dissertation
License: CC-BY
Information on rights of use:
Extent: 267 Blätter
Appears in collections:JGU-Publikationen

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