The impact of coping styles and family communication on the social skills of children of alcoholics

Chris Segrin, Michelle Mize Menees

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Objective: This study examined the relationship between parents' alcoholism and their young adult children's social skills. Although parental alcoholism was hypothesized to be negatively related to children's social skills, this relationship was hypothesized to be moderated by family communication styles and young adults' coping styles Method: Prior to the actual study, potential subjects were screened on a measure of parental alcoholism. To compensate for the positively skewed distribution of this variable, a greater percentage of those in the upper extreme of the scale were invited to participate in the study. For the study, 143 students (77 female) completed self-report measures of parental alcoholism, social skills, family communication and coping styles. Subjects also had a sibling complete measures of parental alcoholism and family communication. Results: Results indicated no significant differences in adult children's social skills as a function of parental alcoholism. Furthermore, family communication and young adults' coping styles did not appear to moderate this relationship. Conclusions: This is one of a growing number of studies that show that children may exhibit undisturbed psychosocial functioning despite having an alcoholic parent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-33
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Studies on Alcohol
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Psychology


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