Perfectionism and Binge Drinking in Canadian Students Making the Transition to University Journal Articles uri icon

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  • OBJECTIVE: In September 2005, the authors explored the relationship between perfectionism and binge drinking in a sample of first-year college students. PARTICIPANTS: The authors recruited 207 first-year college students (76 men, 131 women) to complete the Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale (MPS) and Frost Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale (F-MPS). METHODS: The authors divided participants into 3 groups on the basis of frequency of binge drinking and conducted multivariate analyses of variance to compare the binge drinking groups on the 3 MPS subscales and the 5 F-MPS subscales. RESULTS: The group with 2 or more binge drinking episodes in the past 2 weeks had higher levels of parental criticism and lower levels of self-oriented perfectionism, but they did not have lower scores on a measure of personal standards. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that certain perfectionists binge drink in response to harsh parental treatment and that, at least initially, the pursuit of extreme standards of personal perfection is incompatible with binge drinking. The authors discuss the theoretical and practical implications of these findings.


  • Flett, Gordon L
  • Goldstein, Abby
  • Wall, Anne-Marie
  • Hewitt, Paul L
  • Wekerle, Christine
  • Azzi, Nicole

publication date

  • September 1, 2008