Factors Mediating Problem Drinking and Mothers' Personal Adjustment

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We used analysis of structural relations to evaluate a stress process model in which family stress and family system resources (mothers' marital adjustment and positive mother–child relationships) were tested as mediators of the relationship between fathers' and mothers' problem drinking and mothers' personal adjustment. Data from 120 fathers and mothers of 4th–6th graders were used. Fathers' problem drinking was linked to higher family stress, whereas mothers' problem drinking was not. Higher family stress negatively affected both family system resources. Lower family system resources predicted reduced maternal personal adjustment. Thus, family stress (related to fathers' problem drinking) and family system resources functioned as perfect mediators. There were no direct relationships between problem drinking and either family system resources or mothers' personal adjustment. Implications for intervention are discussed.

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