Need some drinking friends

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Try out PMC Labs and tell us what you think. Learn More. The present study sought to further examine the role of peers on alcohol use and problems among young adults. Another aim was to provide a descriptive examination of drinking buddies. showed that descriptive norms moderated the relationship between drinking buddies and all alcohol outcomes assessed. Specifically, the influence of drinking buddies was stronger for those who perceived a lower prevalence of peer drinking.

Examination of drinking buddies characteristics revealed that these peers tended to be young adults who were moderate social drinkers with whom they felt close and perceived to be available for concrete and emotional support. Several differences emerged between the drinking buddies of heavy versus non-heavy drinkers. The present study contributed to the larger body of work on peer influence and alcohol use by examining a specific subgroup of peers that may promote risky drinking.

Both cross-sectional and longitudinal studies support the direct impact peers have on individual drinking e. This has been demonstrated across both adolescents e. The effect was ificant even after controlling for baseline alcohol use by the peer network. This supports the notion that beyond the drinking by peers, certain individuals in the network i.

Similar findings of the impact of drinking buddies have been demonstrated among newly married couples. Few studies have focused on potential factors moderating the relationship between drinking buddies and alcohol outcomes. One study examined mediators by testing alcohol expectancies i. Identifying conditions under which the two variables are related would aid in deing and tailoring alcohol interventions for young adults. Injunctive norms pertain to perceived attitudes regarding excessive drinking.

Descriptive norms, or perceptions of drinking quantity or frequency among peers, are associated consistently with drinking behavior among college students. Students with higher descriptive normative perceptions exhibit greater quantity of drinking e. Injunctive and descriptive norms may be considered distinct constructs with each ing for unique variance in alcohol outcomes Larimer et al.

Overall, the body of research on norm perception suggests that they are consistently strong predictors of drinking among college students. Given these findings, it may be that perceived norms serve to moderate the link between drinking buddies and alcohol use behaviors. Consequently, the primary aim of this study was to examine the influence of drinking buddies on personal alcohol outcomes i.

We hypothesized that the influence of drinking buddies on alcohol outcomes would be stronger for young adults with greater perceptions of drinking and permissiveness of heavy drinking by peers. A secondary aim of this study was to provide a descriptive examination of drinking buddies. Scant research actually has focused on describing or characterizing this subset of peers in general.

As noted by Reifman et al. Given that drinking buddies do predict subsequent use and problems, knowing who these buddies are may be important for prevention and intervention efforts. Thus, we examined the demographic e. The sample consisted of Participants were recruited from an undergraduate psychology research pool and were compensated with extra credit in their courses. Data were collected in groups with a maximum of 20 participants.

They were provided with a packet of self-report questionnaires that took approximately one hour to complete. Participants reported the of drinks they typically consume for each day of the week over the past three months. Drinking indicators included drinking quantity i. The YAACQ is a item self-report instrument that measures problems experienced in the past year with yes or no response options e.

The overall scale score is calculated by summing the of positive endorsements with higher scores indicating greater likelihood of experiencing alcohol-related problems. The measure examines the extent to which the participant perceives their closest friends approve or disapprove of particular drinking behaviors e. Similar to the DDQ, participants reported the of drinks they perceive their closest friends to consume on each day during a typical week in the past three months.

Descriptive norms were defined as the perceived of drinks consumed each drinking day in a typical week by their closest friends. This is calculated by dividing the total quantity of drinks in a typical week by the of days of alcohol consumption in a week. The SNM is a self-report instrument in which participants identify a maximum of 10 individuals e. Participants responded to questions regarding various characteristics of each person listed in their social network i.

The sample was primarily women The population was predominately Caucasian Participants reported consuming an average of Prior to analyses, data were cleaned and examined for outliers, and statistical assumptions were assessed. Using the total sample of participants, moderation was tested with linear regressions as outlined by Baron and Kenny More specifically, all predictor variables i.

To examine descriptive norms as a moderator of the relationship between of drinking buddies and alcohol outcomes, we entered the main effects i. The same method was used to examine injunctive norms as a moderator of the relationship between drinking buddies and alcohol outcomes. Separate models tested the moderation of descriptive and injunctive norms across each alcohol outcome i. ificant interactions were followed up using simple slope analyses at different levels i. See Table 1 for descriptive statistics and correlation of study variables.

This was such that those with low descriptive normative perceptions of peer consumption and high in of drinking buddies consumed more alcohol. Injunctive norms did not ificantly moderate the relationship between drinking buddies and drinking quantity see Table 2.

This was such that those with low descriptive normative perceptions of peer consumption and high in of drinking buddies drank more frequently. Injunctive norms did not ificantly moderate the relationship between drinking buddies and drinking frequency see Table 2. Individuals with low perceptions of peer consumption and high in the of drinking buddies binge drank more frequently. Injunctive norms did not ificantly moderate the relationship between of drinking buddies and binge drinking frequency see Table 2.

Students with low perceptions of peer consumption and high of drinking buddies experience increased alcohol-related problems. Injunctive norms did not ificantly moderate the relationship between drinking buddies and alcohol-related problems see Table 2. Descriptive statistics and proportions were derived for the following variables averaged across all drinking buddies: age, gender, education level, composition, frequency of contact, closeness of relationship, perceived social support, and drinking habits.

ificant differences between groups are tested with independent t-tests with Bonferroni adjustments for multiple comparisons. The mean age of drinking buddies was No other differences were found for demographic variables. No ificant differences were found based on heavy drinking status. Fifteen percent of drinking buddies were known for less than 1 year, on average. On average, participants reported drinking with their drinking buddies 7 days in the month.

Drinking buddies were examined to reveal their use of alcohol and drugs. Perceived normative perceptions have been demonstrated to be a consistent predictor of alcohol use among college students. Findings revealed that the influence of drinking buddies on drinking outcomes was moderated by perceived descriptive norms.

We found that if the student perceived a low level of use among their peers, then the influence of drinking buddies on personal drinking quantity was strengthened. However, if the student perceived a high level of use by their peers, then the influence of drinking buddies on personal drinking quantity was attenuated; their drinking quantity remained high regardless of the of drinking buddies in their social network.

Similarly, descriptive norms moderated the relationship when drinking frequency, binge drinking frequency, and alcohol-related problems were examined as outcomes. showed consistently that the influence of drinking buddies on alcohol involvement was stronger for those who perceived a lower prevalence of drinking by peers. Overall, these findings suggest that for students who believe others engage in increased drinking, they are likely to engage in drinking themselves and this relationship exists regardless of the of drinking buddies they have in their social network.

In contrast, however, drinking buddies matter in personal alcohol use when individuals have perceptions of low peer drinking. These findings are interesting and are opposite from our initial predictions. This prediction was based on the norms literature indicating the positive associations between descriptive norms and alcohol use and alcohol-related negative consequences e. On the basis of this research, it was predicted that greater drinking buddies would interact with greater norms to influence greater drinking. However, findings showed that for those with higher perceived norms, the of buddies was not particularly relevant in their consumption level.

What appears to be more important is their perception of the quantity of drinking among their peers. However, drinking buddies became much more relevant for students with lower perceived norms. It is possible that drinking buddies convey the normative nature of drinking, and for individuals with lower perceived norms, their drinking is more guided by their immediate drinking buddies. The perceived approval of drinking practices among peers did not emerge as a ificant moderator in the association between drinking buddies and alcohol outcomes. This is in contrast to descriptive norms, which demonstrated moderation across all outcomes assessed.

Our findings add to the body of research highlighting injunctive and descriptive norms as unique constructs that, while related, often differentially or independently predict drinking behavior Larimer et al. Studies on descriptive norms consistently have shown a positive link with alcohol use and alcohol negative consequences Larimer et al.

Need some drinking friends

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