THE SOCIAL AND CULTURAL CONSEQUENCES OF BEING CHILDLESS IN POORRESOURCE AREAS

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RESEARCH PROJECT TOPIC ON THE SOCIAL AND CULTURAL CONSEQUENCES OF BEING CHILDLESS IN POORRESOURCE AREAS

TABLE OF CONTENT

Title Page———i

Certification——–ii

Dedication———iii

Acknowledgement——-iv

Abstract ———vi

Table of Content——–vii

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction ——-1

1.1 Statement of Problem——4

1.2 Purpose of the Study——5

1.3 Significance of Study——8

1.4 Limitation——–9

1.5 Scope of Study——-11

Chapter Two

2.0 Review of Related Literature —-12

2.6 Summary of Literature Review—- 19

Chapter Three

3.0 Research Methodology and Procedure—22

3.1 Population ——–22

3.2 Sample and Sampling Technique—-22

3.3 Validation of the Instrument —-23

3.4 Reliability of the Instrument —–23

3.5 Data Analysis——-23

Chapter Four

4.0 Presentation and Discussion of Result—24

4.1 Analysis and interpretaion of Data—25

4.2 Discussion of Results——38

Chapter Five

5.0 Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation  –40

5.1 Summary——–40

5.2 Conclusion——–41

5.3 Recommendation——42

References ———45

Appendix 1——–47

Appendix ———50

Introduction

Approximately 70-80 million couples world wide are currently infertile (Bos et al., 1995; Boivin et al., 2007) and it can be estimated that tens of millions of couples are primary infertile or childless. For most people, having children is immensely important; not being able to have children is a major life problem. There is also a large group of women and men, who have children, possibly form a previous relationship, who desperately wants to have another child. A considerable body of research in Western countries has shown that involuntary childlessness has strong psychological consequences (see for reviews: Greil, 1997; Brokvich and Fisher, 1998). Most of the studies carried out in this domain are quantatitative and some are qualitative. Both kind of studies, point in the same direction: there are various psychological and psychosomatic effects, and especially women are affected. The most frequently mentioned effects are distress, raised depression and anxiety levels, lowered self-esteem, feelings of blame and guilt, somatic complaints, and reduced sexual interest. For a small minority of women and men in the Western world these effects are at a clinical level or can be considered extremely serious (Greil, 1997).

It is interesting that social and cultural consequences are seldom mentioned in the reports on these studies. When these aspects are considered, they are often related to studies about elderly people without children, regardless of the reason for being childless. It is stressed in the reports of these studies that frail old people without children have less social support (cf., Johnson, 2006) and a less robust network for independent living compared to old people with children (cf., Wenger et al., 2009). Wirtberg and co-workers (2007) however, carried out a study that is unique in the sense that it aims at elderly involuntarily childless women. They reported on 14 women, and described that in all cases but one sexual life was affected negatively and that half of these elderly childless women were separated.

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