Research & Resources

The Intersection of College Student Romantic Relationships, Trauma, and Alcohol Use

This study examined whether relationship status, partner alcohol use, and relationship satisfaction had any bearing on interpersonal trauma exposure (IPT) and alcohol use, and whether these associations varied in a sex-specific manner. Researchers used data from a longitudinal survey of college students enrolled in a large, urban, public university in the mid-Atlantic United States. Individuals with pre-college IPT consumed more alcohol than those without IPT, but this was mitigated for those in relationships. Individuals with college-onset IPT consumed more alcohol than those without IPT, and this was more pronounced for those with higher partner alcohol use. 

This paper, “A longitudinal study of the moderating effects of romantic relationships on the associations between alcohol use and trauma in college students,” was funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and published in the journal Addiction.

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