Decreasing Substance use Risk among African American Youth: Parent-based Mechanisms of Change
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African American couples (N = 139; 67.7 % married; with children between the ages of 9 and 14) were randomly assigned to (a) a culturally sensitive, couple- and parenting-focused program designed to prevent stress-spillover (n = 70) or (b) an information-only control condition in which couples received self-help materials (n = 69). Eight months after baseline, youth whose parents participated in the program, compared with control youth, reported increased parental monitoring, positive racial socialization, and positive self-concept, as well as decreased conduct problems and self-reported substance use. Changes in youth-reported parenting behavior partially mediated the effect of the intervention on conduct problems and fully mediated its impact on positive self-concept, but did not mediate effects on lifetime substance use initiation. Results suggest the potential for a culturally sensitive family-based intervention targeting adults’ couple and parenting processes to enhance multiple parenting behaviors as well as decrease youths’ substance use onset and vulnerability.
KeywordsAfrican American Prevention Couples Parenting Substance use Adolescence
This article was supported in part by grant R01 HD069439 awarded to Steven R. H. Beach and grant P30 DA027827 awarded to Gene H. Brody. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
This article was supported in part by grant R01 HD069439 awarded to Steven R. H. Beach and grant P30 DA027827 awarded to Gene H. Brody.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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