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The Relationship Between Alcohol Consumption Habits and Parenting Style. Katie Hanslits and Stephanie Collins Hanover College. Heavy Drinking Habits Among Parents.

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The Relationship Between Alcohol Consumption Habits and Parenting Style

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The relationship between alcohol consumption habits and parenting style l.jpg

The Relationship Between Alcohol Consumption Habits and Parenting Style

Katie Hanslits and Stephanie Collins

Hanover College

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Heavy Drinking Habits Among Parents

  • Children of alcoholics have been shown to have less emotional support and monitoring. Heavy drinking by both parents is correlated with permissiveness in parenting (van derZwaluw et all 2008).

  • Problematic drinking is associated with poor parenting and authoritarian or permissive parenting styles (Keller et all 2005).

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Parenting Styles

Three different parenting styles(Baumrind, 1966).

Permissive: parent attempts to behave in a non-punitive, acceptant and affirmative manner towards the child's impulses, desires, and actions.

Authoritarian: parent attempts to shape, control, and evaluate the behavior and attitudes of the child in accordance with a set standard of conduct formulated by a higher authority.

Authoritative: parent attempts to direct the child's activities but in a rational, issue-oriented manner.

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Parenting Styles

  • Parenting styles have a long term effect of overall well being of child. Having parents with authoritative styles of parenting elicit higher levels of well-being in the child (Huppert et al., 2010).

  • Children with mothers who are assessed to be authoritarian in their parenting styles are less well behaved in the classroom (Reine, 2001).

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Outcomes for the Children

  • Parental problem drinking has been associated with negative events in their child’s life.

    --303 families of 4-6 graders

    --Parents and children were interviewed and tested

  • Indirect relationship between parental problem drinking and parenting

    --Children with parents who were heavy drinkers were significantly more likely to experience negative life events (Roosa, 1993).

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Basis for Research Question

Heavy Drinking By the Parent

Child’s Health and Well-being

Heavy Drinking By the Parent

Child’s Health and Well-being

Parenting Style

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  • Parents with heavy drinking habits will tend to have more permissive and authoritarian parenting styles compared to light drinkers

  • Nondrinkers and light drinkers will tend to have more authoritative parenting styles

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Participants were obtained online through Psychological Research on the Net and Facebook

  • N=63 (Male = 10, Female = 50, Did not wish to answer= 3)

  • Ethnicity

    • Caucasian 69.8%, African-American 11%, Other 19.2%

  • Average Income: $37,111.37

  • Age Range: 18-63 years old

  • Number of children (M= 2.07)

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Measures: Parenting Styles

Parental Authority Questionnaire (Buri 1991)

Permissive(.74) Authoritarian(.86) Authoritative (.83)


Ex: As a parent, I felt that in a well-run home, the children should have their way in the family as often as parents do.


Ex: Even if my children did not agree with me, I felt that it was for their own good if they were forced to conform to what I thought was right.


Ex: I have always encouraged verbal give-and-take whenever I have felt that family rules and restrictions were unreasonable.

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Measures: Drinking Habits

Heavy Drinking Questions

  • How many standard alcoholic beverages do you consume a day?

  • On nights when you are in a social setting, how many standard drinks do you consume?

  • Do you ever drink because you are experiencing difficult emotions?

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  • Participants will find survey located on the designated website

  • Informed Consent

  • Parenting style assessment and drinking habits obtained through a survey

    -Demographics will be obtained at the beginning of the survey

  • Debriefed, thanked, and given a link to find the results

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Results: Education

Lower Education

Higher Education

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  • Parental priorities shift and Responsibility Slips (Haugland, 2005)

  • Control changes (Huckstadt, 1987)

  • Education level (McCarthy et al., 2002)

    • Experience of Cognitive Dissonance, Labeling, and Occupational Stress

  • Better reasoning in light drinkers (Williams & Skinner, 1990)

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  • Parents influence their child’s life

  • Stronger support for heavier drinking parents and alcoholic parents

  • Effects of permissive parenting on the child

  • Risk of higher education, drinking, and cognitive dissonance

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  • Small Sample of heavy drinkers

  • Number of questions assessing alcohol consumption habits and specificity

  • Nature of alcohol consumption habits questions

  • Gender

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  • Baumrind, D. (1966). Effects of Authoritative Parental Control on Child Behavior, ChildDevelopment, 37(4), 887-907.

  •  Huppert, F. A.; Abbott, R. A.; Ploubidis, G. B.; Richards, M.; Kuh, D.; Psychological Medicine: A Journal of Research in Psychiatry and the Allied Sciences, Vol 40(9), Sep, 2010. pp. 1507-1518. [Journal Article]

  • Keller, P. S., Cummings, E., & Davies, P. T. (2005). The role of marital discord and parenting in relations between parental problem drinking and child adjustment. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 46(9), 943-951. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7610.2004.00399.x

  • Maynard, Dona E.; Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, Vol 60(6-B), Jan, 1999. pp. 2988. [Dissertation]

  • Pelham, W. r., & Lang, A. R. (1999). Can your children drive you to drink?: Stress and parenting in adults interacting with children with ADHD. Alcohol Research & Health, 23(4), 292-298. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

  • Roosa, M. W., Tein, J., Groppenbacher, N., Michaels, M., & Dumka, L. (1993). Mothers' parenting behavior and child mental health in families with a problem drinking parent. Journal of Marriage & the Family, 55(1), 107-118. doi:10.2307/352962

  • Stout, M. Lisa; Mintz, Laurie B.; Journal of Counseling Psychology, Vol 43(4), Oct, 1996. pp. 466-472. [Journal Article]

  • Tildesley, E. A., & Andrews, J. A. (2008). The development of children's intentions to use alcohol: Direct and indirect effects of parent alcohol use and parenting behaviors. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 22(3), 326-339. doi:10.1037/0893-164X.22.3.326

  • van derZwaluw, C. S., Scholte, R. J., Vermulst, A. A., Buitelaar, J. K., Verkes, R., & Engels, R. E. (2008). Parental problem drinking, parenting, and adolescent alcohol use. Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 31(3), 189-200. doi:10.1007/s10865-007-9146-z

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