Authors: Samuel Johansson, Lennart Lilja

Supervisor: Olov Aronson


Previous research has shown that children of parents with substance disorder have an increased vulnerability to develop substance-related problems themselves. This essay examines whether the phenomenon can be understood from the individual personality traits of the children. The thesis also examines if there are personality traits that correlate with an early alcohol debut. The following questions were formulated: (a) Are differences in personality traits related to early alcohol debut? (b) Are there differences in personality traits between children growing up with parents with substance disorder and children growing up with parents without substance disorder?

The thesis uses material from the research program Longitudinal Research on Development in Adolescence (LoRDIA). The research from LoRDIA has been funded by FORTE, FORMAS, VINNOVA. The thesis population (N) consists of 1886 school children. The age of the respondents has a mean value (M) of 13.35 years. For the purpose of examining the personality traits of young people, the personality test performed in the context of the LoRDIA study, Junior Temperament and Character Inventory (J-TCI), was used. Relationships between personality traits and early alcohol onset were examined with a logistic regression analysis. The result shows that there is a connection between an early alcohol debut and high scores on the personality traits Novelty Seeking and Self-Transcendence, as well as low scores on Self-Directedness. In order to investigate differences between the groups of children to parents with substance disorder and children to parents without substance disorder, a Welch's T-test was performed. The result shows that children of a parent with substance disorder rate themselves lower on the personality trait Self-Directedness than children of a parent without substance disorder..

This research is financed by:

Swedish Research Council, FORTE, VINNOVA, Formas

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