- OBJECTIVE: We studied the extent to which parent marijuana use in adolescence is associated
with marijuana use onset in offspring through contextual family and peer risks.
assessed (n = 93) since childhood, their 146 offspring (n = 83 girls), and offspring’s mothers
(n = 85) participated in a longitudinal study. Using discrete-time survival analysis, fathers’
(prospectively measured) and mothers’ (retrospective) adolescent marijuana use was used to
predict offspring marijuana use onset through age 19 years. Parental monitoring, child exposure
to marijuana use, peer deviance, peer marijuana use, and perceptions of parent disapproval of
child use were measured before or concurrent with onset.
RESULTS: Parents’ adolescent marijuana
use was significantly associated with less monitoring, offspring alcohol use, the peer behaviors,
exposure to adult marijuana use, and perceptions of less parent disapproval. Male gender and the
two peer behaviors were positively associated with children’s marijuana use onset, controlling
for their alcohol use. Parents’ adolescent marijuana use had a significant indirect effect on child
onset through children’s deviant peer affiliations and a composite contextual risk score.
CONCLUSIONS: Parents’ histories of marijuana use may contribute indirectly to children’s
marijuana use onset through their influence on the social environments children encounter;
specifically, those characterized by more liberal use norms, exposure to marijuana use and
deviant and marijuana-using peers, and less adult supervision. Given that alcohol use onset was
controlled, findings suggest that the contextual factors identified here confer unique risk for child
marijuana use onset.
- Kerr, D. C. R., Tiberio, S. S., & Capaldi, D. M. (2015). Contextual risks linking parents’ adolescent marijuana use to offspring onset. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 154, 222-228. doi:10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2015.06.041
|Funding Statement (additional comments about funding)
- This research was supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. PHS Award Number R01 DA015485 from the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), R01 AA018669 from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), and R01 HD46364 from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) awarded to Dr. Capaldi.