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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Alcohol expectancies, alcohol use, and hostility as longitudinal predictors of alcohol-related aggression

The direct and interactive effects of alcohol expectancies for aggression, dispositional hostility, and heavy alcohol consumption on alcohol-related physical aggression were examined across the first four years of marriage in a sample of 634 newlywed couples.

For husbands, alcohol aggression expectancies predicted increases in alcohol-related aggression; across husbands and wives, however, aggression expectancies were not found to interact with hostility or alcohol consumption to predict physical aggression.

Consistent with previous research, hostility and alcohol consumption interacted with each other to predict alcohol-related aggression.

Specifically, for both husbands and wives high in dispositional hostility, heavy alcohol consumption was positively associated with the occurrence of alcohol-related aggression; for those low in dispositional hostility, however, there was no association between alcohol consumption and alcohol-related aggression.

Findings are contrasted with previous longitudinal research on alcohol aggression expectancies and physical aggression in married couples.

The article discusses the extent to which findings may vary depending on whether expectancies are assessed in relation to alcohol's effect on one's own behavior versus alcohol's effect on others' behavior.

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