Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology


Clinical Psychology



First Advisor

Nicole H. Weiss


Introduction. Interpersonal trauma (IPT) and substance use are particularly prevalent and problematic concerns among military personnel. Theoretical and empirical findings suggest that IPT and substance use are highly interconnected. Elucidating the developmental trajectory between IPT and substance use is necessary for identifying prominent pathways for intervention. Purpose. The current study examined IPT and substance use longitudinally, from pre- to post-deployment, among a large military sample. Method. This study utilized a sample of 4,645 military service members who were administered self-report questionnaires at four separate timepoints (one pre-deployment and three post-deployment). Results. Cross-lagged panel models were estimated to examine longitudinal and bidirectional relations between IPT and substance use disorder (SUD) from pre- to post-deployment and across sex. Findings showed that pre-deployment IPT was associated with post-deployment SUD, and pre-deployment SUD was associated with post-deployment IPT across the full sample, suggesting a bidirectional relation. However, the relationships varied between men and women, such that a bidirectional relationship was supported among women, but not men. Conclusions. Results of this study have important implications for future research and the prevention and treatment of IPT and SUD in the military.

Available for download on Thursday, May 08, 2025