This study examined whether there were latent status based on past-year teen dating violence (TDV) and alcohol use and whether female adolescents changed their statuses of TDV and alcohol use over time.
Alcohol use is one of the most widely accepted and studied risk factors for teen dating violence (TDV); however, too little research has explored longitudinally whether an adolescent's alcohol use and TDV involvement occur simultaneously. The sample consisted of 583 female youths in seven public high schools in Texas. Three waves of longitudinal data collected from 2011 to 2013 were used in this study. Participants completed self-report assessments of alcohol use (past-year alcohol use, number of drinks in the past month and episodic heavy drinking within the past month) and psychological and physical TDV victimization and perpetration. Latent transition analysis was used to examine whether the latent status based on TDV and alcohol use changed over time. The study identified five separate latent statuses: 1) no violence, no alcohol; (2) alcohol; (3) psychological violence, no alcohol; (4) psychological violence, alcohol; and (5) physical and psychological violence, alcohol. Latent transition analysis indicated that adolescents generally remained in the same subgroup across time. This study provides evidence of the co-occurrence of alcohol use and teen dating violence, and whether teens' status based on dating violence and alcohol use are stable over time. Findings from the current study highlight the importance of targeting both TDV and substance use in intervention and prevention programs. (Publisher abstract modified)
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