Attitudes of High School Students Regarding Intimate Relationships and Gender Norms in New Providence, The Bahamas


  • Donna Nicolls Bahamas Crisis Centre
  • Camille Russell-Smith The College of The Bahamas
  • Sandra Dean-Patterson The Bahamas Crisis Centre
  • Lindel D. Deveaux-Stuart The College of The Bahamas
  • Ingrid Gibson-Mobley The College of The Bahamas
  • Elizabeth J. Williams The College of The Bahamas
  • Antoinette Pinder-Darling The College of The Bahamas
  • William J. Fielding The College of The Bahamas



High school students, Teenagers - Bahamas, Bahamas, Interpersonal relationships


This paper reports the attitudes and actions on relationships with the opposite sex of 1,002 Grade 10 and Grade 12 students in New Providence. Girls were more likely than boys to use aggressive behaviours in teen relationships. Some of the behaviours noted in teen relationships informed expectations of marital relationships, such as restricted access to friends of the opposite sex. The students endorsed a number of sex-related stereotypes, such as a man being the head of the household. Both male and female students indicated that it was acceptable for men to control their wives. Participation in aggressive and controlling behaviours by teens points to the need to educate students about how to develop more respectful relationships.

Author Biographies

Donna Nicolls, Bahamas Crisis Centre

Assistant Director

Camille Russell-Smith, The College of The Bahamas

Counsellor II

Sandra Dean-Patterson, The Bahamas Crisis Centre


Lindel D. Deveaux-Stuart, The College of The Bahamas

School of Nursing and Allied Health Professions

Ingrid Gibson-Mobley, The College of The Bahamas

Head of Department, School of Nursing and Allied Health Professions

Elizabeth J. Williams, The College of The Bahamas

School of Nursing and Allied Health Professions

Antoinette Pinder-Darling, The College of The Bahamas

Office of Academic Affairs

William J. Fielding, The College of The Bahamas

Director of Planning


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