The Influence of Men’s Social Networks and Social Norms on Family Planning in Benin

Katherine LeMasters , University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Elizabeth Costenbader, Johns Hopkins University
Andres Martinez, FHI 360
Ilene S. Speizer, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Susan Igras, Institute for Reproductive Health
Kimberly Ashburn, Social Scientist, International Center for Research on Women

This analysis aims to assess men’s social networks and norms surrounding family planning (FP) and the relation of these factors to couple’s FP use. We examined pre- and post-intervention surveys completed by men in the Tékponon Jikuagou intervention in Benin, which worked to engage women and men in FP discussions by catalyzing diffusion of new ideas through women’s and men’s networks. Intention to use FP increased significantly from baseline to endline in the intervention group. Most men had few network members, talked with few members about FP, and did not discuss FP with their partner(s), yet most believed it was acceptable to discuss FP. Among social factors, FP communication with network contacts had the most significant relationship with FP intentions. These findings indicate both a need and opportunity for increased FP related dialogue in these communities.

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 Presented in Session 141. Men’s Fertility, Family Planning, and Sexual and Reproductive Health