Cohabitation reduces bulimic symptoms in young women
Article first published online: 21 APR 2006
Copyright © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 39, Issue 6, pages 484–491, September 2006
How to Cite
von Soest, T. and Wichstrøm, L. (2006), Cohabitation reduces bulimic symptoms in young women. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 39: 484–491. doi: 10.1002/eat.20273
- Issue published online: 18 AUG 2006
- Article first published online: 21 APR 2006
- Manuscript Accepted: 12 NOV 2005
- Research Council of Norway
- Norwegian Foundation for Health and Rehabilitation/Norwegian Council for Mental Health. Grant Number: 2003/2/0029
- bulimic symptoms;
- social control;
- eating problems;
This current study examines the relationship between cohabitation and changes in bulimic symptoms in young adults.
A sample of 2601 initially noncohabitating adolescents was followed over a 5-year period and growth curve analyses were conducted.
Females who over the course of the study moved in with a partner had greater decreases in bulimic symptoms compared with female noncohabitators. This difference was highly significant, even if small in size. No such effect was found in males. When examining the frequency of bulimic behaviors in females, the most socially unacceptable bulimic behaviors were those most reduced by cohabitation, whereas less obtrusive bulimic behaviors were not reduced.
The results give some indication that social control exercised in close relationships may account for decreased bulimic symptoms in female cohabitators. Further studies are needed to confirm the importance of social control and to examine how it affects symptom reduction. © 2006 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2006