Does adolescent alcohol and marijuana use predict suppressed growth in psychosocial maturity among male juvenile offenders?

Laurie Chassin, Julia Dmitrieva, Kathryn Modecki, Laurence Steinberg, Elizabeth Cauffman, Alex R. Piquero, George P. Knight, Sandra Losoya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations

Abstract

Multiple theories suggest mechanisms by which the use of alcohol and drugs during adolescence could dampen growth in psychosocial maturity. However, scant empirical evidence exists to support this proposition. The current study tested whether alcohol and marijuana use predicted suppressed growth in psychosocial maturity among a sample of male serious juvenile offenders (n = 1,170) who were followed from ages 15 to 21 years. Alcohol and marijuana use prospectively predicted lower maturity 6 months later. Moreover, boys with the greatest increases in marijuana use showed the smallest increases in psychosocial maturity. Finally, heterogeneity in the form of age-related alcohol and marijuana trajectories was related to growth in maturity, such that only boys who decreased their alcohol and marijuana use significantly increased in psychosocial maturity. Taken together, these findings suggest that patterns of elevated alcohol and marijuana use in adolescence may suppress age-typical growth in psychosocial maturity from adolescence to young adulthood, but that effects are not necessarily permanent, because decreasing use is associated with increases in maturity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)48-60
Number of pages13
JournalPsychology of Addictive Behaviors
Volume24
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2010

Keywords

  • Adolescent substance use
  • Maturity trajectories

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Does adolescent alcohol and marijuana use predict suppressed growth in psychosocial maturity among male juvenile offenders?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this