To better understand the relationship between alcohol consumption and living with children, we assessed whether the association varied for men and women across diverse countries and whether this relationship was moderated by country-level gender inequality.
Design and methods
We used Hierarchical Linear Modelling to analyse data from 32 surveys conducted in 27 countries. Measures included whether the participant was a drinker versus abstainer in past 12 months, annual number of drinks consumed, whether the respondent lived with children, gender (male/female) and age of respondent, and country-level gender inequality measured using the Gender Inequality Index.
Annual drinks consumed was significantly lower for women living with children. Men living with children were generally more likely to be drinkers, and the relationship between annual consumption and living with children was moderated by cultural gender equality: specifically, men in countries with higher gender equality drank less if they lived with children while the association for men in lower equality countries was nonsignificant.
Discussion and conclusions
Although lower alcohol consumption was found generally for women living with children, this relationship was found only for men in countries where there was more gender equality. Given the high risk of harm to children from heavy consumption by adults with whom they live, prevention efforts need to strengthen prevention of heavy consumption by parents and other who live with children, especially for men who live with children in low gender equality countries.