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An Examination of Pathways from Childhood Maltreatment to Adolescent Binge Drinking

Authors


Dr. Shin, School of Social Work, Boston University, 264 Bay State Road, Boston, MA 02215. E-mail: hshin@bu.edu.

Abstract

Considerable clinical and empirical evidence has accumulated over the past decades indicating that there is a strong association between childhood maltreatment and heavy episodic drinking in adolescence, but there is a paucity of empirically based knowledge about the processes linking the association. The aim of this paper is to examine mechanisms that might account for the association between childhood maltreatment and heavy episodic drinking in adolescence. Using a nationally representative sample of adolescents (ages ranging 12–21; N = 6,337), this study examined the role of individual self-regulatory processes in the associations, controlling for age, gender, race/ethnicity, peer substance use, parental alcoholism, and parent–child conflict. Factor analyses were used to test the measurement structure of self-regulatory processes. Findings confirmed the association between childhood maltreatment and heavy episodic drinking in adolescence. Structural modeling analyses indicated indirect effects for childhood maltreatment primarily through poor self-regulatory processes and peer substance use. Implications for future research are discussed. (Am J Addict 2012;21:202–209)

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