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The results of this study are in line with past work that suggests that the association between relationship characteristics and substance use is complex.

It also identifies religiosity as a protective factor for the effect of dating attitudes on substance use but suggests that these effects may be the most important for youth with moderate levels of dysfunctional dating attitudes.

Substance use has been supported as a risk factor for dating violence perpetration and victimization (for review, see [2]) and as a consequence of dating violence victimization [3].Less work has examined the role that dating attitudes and relationship characteristics play in youth’s substance use.Substance use and relationship problems are significant issues facing youth.The 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey found that 34.9% of high school students had used alcohol and 23% used marijuana in the 30 days prior to the survey; among the 73.9% of high school students who had dated in the 12 months prior to the survey, 10.3% experienced prior-year physical dating violence and 10.4% experienced prior-year sexual dating violence [1].


Among these youth, the buffering effect of religiosity increased with age.For youth with low and high dysfunctional dating attitudes, religiosity did not buffer the association.


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