Posted on July 11, 2008 in Alcohol and Drug News, Alcohol and Drug Treatment

Growing Up Alcoholic: The Effects of Alcohol Abuse on Children

Alcohol addiction is a very dangerous disease that not only affects the individual, but also has a direct affect on those family members who are around the addict. A great deal of parents who are dealing with stressors such as their careers, a love life, family issues, tend to turn to alcohol within the home, and more often than not the can become out of control. So how does alcoholism affect the children living in the same home?

According to Stephanie Brown, founder of the Alcohol Clinic at Stanford Medical Center, statistics show that 76 million Americans, which equals out to about 45% have been exposed to some form of alcoholism in the family home in one way or another. What’s worse than this is that about 26.8 million of those numbers are children. Growing up with alcoholism can be a very traumatic experience for a child because one of the main problems in an alcoholic home is one of neglect. The parents who have the problem become so absorbed in their habits that they tend to forget birthdays, and other important events in a child’s life leaving them with a feeling of having no faith in anything or anyone. Children are very influential and after living in an environment of denial they become resistant to discuss important and life-changing aspects of life themselves. And studies have shown that this behavior may cause children to suffer from bouts of depression, anxiety and compulsions later on in their lives.

Growing up in a home with a parent addicted to alcohol also has an effect on the social circles that children get involved in. Without a proper discipline regimen at home, children can get involved with drugs and alcohol themselves and there is also a higher risk for that child to marry someone with an alcohol problem down the road.

Alcoholism is not an individual disease. It affects everyone in the home, and can especially have a dangerous and life-changing effect on the children who are being exposed to it. If you have a family member who is suffering from this dangerous problem, help is available. It only takes one voice to be the difference and the help that a person needs.

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