The application of a feminist poststructural framework in nursing practice to address adolescent girls’ sexual health
Neelam Punjani, Elisavet Papathanasoglou and Kathleen Hegadoren
Background: Sexuality and sexual health are interconnected, and they interact with physical, mental, and social well-being to form one’s sense of wellness. In many patriarchal societies adolescent girls must be ‘seen and not heard’. They face a great deal of pressure to act in feminine ways in their relationships with others and with their bodies and may be caught in opposing discourses between chastity and fulfilling expectations of femininity. Health care professionals can promote positive sexual well-being among adolescent girls who live with conflicting sexual health discourses.
Aim: This paper, through a feminist poststructuralist framework, examines the conflicting discourses of adolescent girls, who experience power struggles with regard to their sexuality and sexual health practices. It aims to provide nurses with a pragmatic framework for exploring, assessing and potentially transforming health care situations when caring for young women in a sexual health setting.
Methods: A review of the literature on adolescent girls’ sexuality and sexual health was conducted and analysed using a feminist poststructuralist framework. Nursing strategies to address the identified issues in practice were based on a feminist poststructuralist framework.
Results: The feminist post structural framework highlights the conflicting discourses related to adolescent girl’s sexuality and sexual health practices. Themes identified from the review, as they relate to sexual discourse, were power, language, subjectivity, and agency. Thus the theoretical underpinnings of feminist theory and post structuralism can help nurses to explore the sexual health of adolescent girls and improve the delivery of sexual health care.
Conclusion: This paper provides strategies on how to incorporate theory to improve nurses’ understanding about adolescent girls’ sexual health.
Neelam Punjani, Elisavet Papathanasoglou, Kathleen Hegadoren. The application of a feminist poststructural framework in nursing practice to address adolescent girls’ sexual health. Int J Adv Res Community Health Nurs 2021;3(2):14-20. DOI: 10.33545/26641658.2021.v3.i2a.71