Navigation Links
Heavy drinking is bad for marriage if 1 spouse drinks, but not both
Date:11/21/2013

BUFFALO, N.Y. Do drinking and marriage mix? That depends on who's doing the drinking and how much according to a recent study by the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions (RIA).

Researchers followed 634 couples from the time of their weddings through the first nine years of marriage and found that couples where only one spouse was a heavy drinker had a much higher divorce rate than other couples.

But if both spouses were heavy drinkers? The divorce rate was the same as for couples where neither were heavy drinkers.

"Our results indicate that it is the difference between the couple's drinking habits, rather than the drinking itself, that leads to marital dissatisfaction, separation and divorce," said Kenneth Leonard, PhD, RIA director and lead author of the study.

A video interview with Leonard about the research is available here: http://youtu.be/AhRDOJG75CU.

The study's co-authors were Gregory Homish, PhD, and Philip Smith, PhD, of UB's Department of Community Health and Health Behavior.

Over the course of the nine-year study, nearly 50 percent of couples where only one partner drank more heavily wound up divorcing, while the divorce rates for other couples was only 30 percent. ("Heavy drinking" was defined as drinking six or more drinks at one time or drinking to intoxication.)

"This research provides solid evidence to bolster the commonplace notion that heavy drinking by one partner can lead to divorce," Leonard said. "Although some people might think that's a likely outcome, there was surprisingly little data to back up that claim until now."

The surprising outcome was that the divorce rate for two heavy drinkers was no worse than for two non-heavy drinkers. "Heavy drinking spouses may be more tolerant of negative experiences related to alcohol due to their own drinking habits," Leonard said. But he cautioned that this does not mean other aspects of family life are unimpaired. "While two heavy drinkers may not divorce, they may create a particularly bad climate for their children."

The researchers also found a slightly higher divorce rate in cases when the heavy drinker was the wife, rather than the husband. Leonard cautions that this difference is based on only a few couples in which the wife was a heavy drinker, but the husband was not, and that the finding was not statistically significant. He suggests that if this difference is supported by further research, it might be because men view heavy drinking by their wives as going against proper gender roles for women, leading to more conflict.

The study controlled for factors such as marijuana and tobacco use, depression and socioeconomic status, which can also be related to marital dissatisfaction, separation and divorce.

"Ultimately, we hope our findings will be helpful to marriage therapists and mental health practitioners who can explore whether a difference in drinking habits is causing conflicts between couples seeking help," Leonard said.

The study was supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the findings will appear in the December issue of Psychology of Addictive Behaviors.


'/>"/>

Contact: Cathy Wilde
cwilde@ria.buffalo.edu
716-887-3365
University at Buffalo
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Heavy Backpacks Give Kids Back Trouble
2. Can Heavy Metal in Foods, Cosmetics Spur Breast Cancer Spread?
3. WSU researches patterns of heavy alcohol use and life commitments in at-risk young adults
4. Heavy Drinking, Smoking Wont Harm Mens Sperm: Study
5. Heavy Duty Alternators and Starters Expert Elreg Distributors Ltd. Meets Needs of International Market with Launch of Spanish Website
6. Massage Industry Heavyweights Team Up for First-Ever Massage Documentary
7. Heavy Coffee Intake May Affect Fertility Treatments: Study
8. Police Work Takes Heavy Health Toll: Study
9. Heavy Drinking in Pregnancy Linked to Host of Problems in Children
10. Obese Label May Not Apply to Heavy Ex-NFL Players
11. Brain activity may predict teens heavy drinking
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... The Journal of ... from 0.416 in 2013. The SJR uses data taken from the Scopus database (Elsevier ... the number of citations received by the journal over a three year period and ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... 2016 , ... The president released a FY 2017 budget request on Tuesday ... of the cost burden to military beneficiaries. , MOAA’s president, retired Air Force ... as including limited quantifiable benefit fixes mixed with numerous beneficiary fee hikes. , “We ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... 11, 2016 , ... Hall Integrative Health and Chiropractic, PC ... simultaneous grand openings in March. All seven practices are set to start accepting ... reversing diabetes possible? According to this 2011 CNN article it is possible: ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... February 11, 2016 , ... ... women’s health, is pleased to announce the promotions of Allison Kelly to executive ... Steve Catone to executive vice president of North American capital sales, and Wendy ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Atlantic Information Services, Inc. (AIS) is pleased ... Study for Plans and Purchasers.” Executives from Intel Corp. and Providence Health & ... health benefits program Connected Care, will discuss the challenges they faced (and how ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... Fla. , Feb. 11, 2016 ... ) company providing high-quality specialty pharmacy care for ... announced today it has achieved full Specialty Pharmacy ... accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality ... --> --> The URAC accreditation ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  M3 Biotechnology Inc., spurred by a major "team investment" by ... brother, Michael, has completed an oversubscribed Series A-Round, according to CEO Leen Kawas , PhD. ... ... ... ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... 11, 2016 SI-BONE, Inc., a medical ... iFuse Implant System, a minimally invasive surgical (MIS) ... the sacroiliac (SI) joint, announced the publication of ... MIS SI joint fusion for patients suffering from ... or SI joint disruption.  In the first article, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: