The Impact of Addiction on Families
If you’re trying to help a family member who’s been struggling with alcoholism or drug addiction, chances are you’ve been impacted nearly as profoundly as they have. You may not be struggling in exactly the same way, but there’s no doubt you’re suffering, and there is no doubt that you need to reach out for help.
All forms of a substance use disorder, including alcoholism and drug addiction, take a heavy toll on family members, including children, siblings, parents, and grandparents. Understanding how addiction impacts families and what you can do to address it is one of the best ways to prepare for treatment.
How Addiction Affects Children
When a parent is addicted to drugs or struggling with alcoholism, children are often caught in the middle. In addition to worrying about their parent, kids may also experience issues with abuse and neglect, problems in school, behavioral issues, and more.
If you’re concerned about a loved one struggling with addiction who has children, stay vigilant and watch out for these potential impacts:
- Problems with learning and concentration
- Acting out, including sudden outbursts of anger or deep sadness
- Fights with friends or classmates
- Mirroring the grief of their addicted family members
The Impact of Addiction on Teens
Drug addiction and alcoholism can impact teens in several unique ways. Teenagers are in the age group most likely to experiment with alcohol and drugs, and some of them will develop addictions of their own.
At the same time, teenage sons and daughters of addicted or alcoholic parents may experience the same kinds of issues as their younger brothers in sisters, even if the problems manifest themselves differently. Some of the impacts of addiction on teens include:
- Problems with family relationship
- Issues with romantic partners
- Lack of inhibition, including risky sexual behaviors
- Poor performance at school
- Experimenting with the drugs or alcohol their parents have been taking
- Reckless behavior
- Stealing money from parents and other relatives
- Running away from home
How Addiction Affects the Whole Family
Drug addiction and alcoholism can profoundly impact kids and teens, but other family members are not immune to the problem. If someone in your life has been addicted to drugs or alcohol, you may be feeling some of these impacts:
- Feelings of hopelessness and despair
- Guilt at not doing more
- Enabling behavior, including giving money to the addicted or alcoholic family member
- Fights within the family
- Increased risk of domestic violence
- Resistance to treatment
- Drug and alcohol experimentation among other members of the family
Healing Families Through Family Therapy at WhiteSands
Drug addiction and alcoholism are family diseases, impacting everyone the alcoholic or drug addict comes in contact with. Anyone who has ever struggled with substance use disorder understands the toxic nature of addiction and how the actions of addicts trickle down to all members of their family.
At WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab, we recognize the direct impact that alcoholism and drug addiction can have on entire families, which is why we take a whole family approach. Our unique treatment protocols can address the root causes of addiction, the aftermath of excessive drug and alcohol consumption, the toxic impact on the family, and all other aspects of the situation.
If you are worried about a family member who’s been struggling with drug addiction or alcoholism, we encourage you to pick up the phone today and give us a call. We understand what you’re going through and we also understand where you can go in life if you face your addiction challenges head-on and let our staff help you.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.