The Impact of Gender Role Attitudes on Sterilization Decisions

Amy L. Godecker


Researchers have suggested that gender role attitudes may influence couples' decisions about sterilization. I tested these ideas using a sample of married, non-Hispanic white men and women drawn from Waves I and II of the National Survey of Families and Households. Wife's and husband's gender role attitudes were marginally significant in affecting sterilization rates. Couples in which the wife held more traditional attitudes had higher rates of sterilization, while couples with more traditional husbands had lower sterilization rates. Husband's education affected the risk of sterilization, suggesting it might be valuable to take husband's characteristics into account in future research.