Relationship satisfaction; alcohol misuse; young adulthood; conformity; coping


Alcohol consumption is becoming an increasing concern among young adults. In 2018, approximately one-third of young adults in the United States reported binge drinking within the past month (Patrick et al., 2020). This peak in binge drinking during young adulthood raises concerns about physical and mental health. There are also societal implications of alcohol consumption, such as drunk driving, that are particularly evident among this age group (Stewart, 2023). As proposed by the Social Learning Theory (SLT) of alcohol use, there are many factors that motivate young adults to drink (Britton, 2004). Some engage in alcohol consumption to cope with stressful situations, while others are influenced by the perceived social norms of their peers. The current study advances SLT in regard to alcohol misuse by examining dating relationship satisfaction as a predictor of the various pathways that lead to alcohol consumption. In order to gain a better understanding of these associations, young adults were asked to complete an anonymous online survey. The survey consisted of the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (Babor et al., 2001), the Drinking Motives Questionnaire-Revised (Cooper, 1994), the Relationship Assessment Scale (Hendrick, 1988), and a series of demographic questions. Results suggest that relationship satisfaction and coping motivations are particularly influential on alcohol consumption. The societal and individual implications of these results will be further discussed.

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White, Grace


College of Sciences

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Open Access

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Psychology Commons