, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 691–710

Cleaning up their act: The effects of marriage and cohabitation on licit and illicit drug use

  • Greg J. Duncan
  • Bessie Wilkerson
  • Paula England

DOI: 10.1353/dem.2006.0032

Cite this article as:
Duncan, G.J., Wilkerson, B. & England, P. Demography (2006) 43: 691. doi:10.1353/dem.2006.0032


We use data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to estimate changes in binge drinking, marijuana use, and cigarette smoking surrounding young adults’ first experiences of cohabitation and marriage. Both marriage and cohabitation are accompanied by decreases in some risk behaviors, but reductions surrounding marriage are larger and most consistent, particularly for men. Binge drinking and marijuana use respond to these events, especially marriage, but smoking does not.

Copyright information

© Population Association of America 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Greg J. Duncan
    • 1
  • Bessie Wilkerson
    • 2
  • Paula England
    • 3
  1. 1.Institute for Policy ResearchNorthwestern UniversityEvanston
  2. 2.The Harlem Children’s ZoneUSA
  3. 3.Department of SociologyStanford UniversityUSA

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