Adolescent neglect and alcohol use disorders in two-parent families

Duncan B. Clark, Dawn L. Thatcher, Stephen A. Maisto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Parental responsibilities to adolescents include supervision and emotional support, and variations in these parenting behaviors have been demonstrated to influence adolescent alcohol involvement. This study developed a scale-based method for identifying adolescents with low-parent involvement and examined effects on the development and course of alcohol use disorders (AUDs). The participants were 361 adolescents (ages 14 to 17 years) from two-parent families recruited from clinical and community sources. Cluster analysis of questionnaire items describing mother and father involvement identified 75 adolescents with low-parent involvement (i.e., Neglect). Compared with reference adolescents, Neglect adolescents were significantly more likely to be influenced by social pressure to drink alcohol. Among community participants, Neglect adolescents were more likely to develop AUDs. Among adolescents receiving treatment for AUDs, those in the Neglect group showed more improvement during a 1-year follow-up period. The results indicate that inadequate parent involvement may be a form of neglect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-370
Number of pages14
JournalChild Maltreatment
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2004


  • Adolescent
  • Alcohob-related disorders
  • Parenting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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