Couples’ Drinking Patterns, Intimate Partner Violence, and Alcohol-Related Partnership Problems

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Past research has revealed a strong correspondence between alcohol use and family dysfunction (e.g., Straus and Gelles in 1986 and 1990). Unfortunately, much of this research has relied on reports from only one family member. Using the "drinking partnerships" construct developed by Roberts and Leonard in 1997, we found that despite considerable concordance between couple members' drinking behaviors, discrepant drinking patterns were strongly predictive of relational distress and the incidence of physical violence. These findings suggest that the interaction between couple members' alcohol-related behaviors has crucial implication for the health and well-being of the entire family.

Related Topics

  • Behavioral Health
  • Fathers/Partners