Country’s Premier Organization for Treatment of Alcohol/Drug problems, De-addiction, Rehabilitation, Counselling, Treatment for Females, Nasha Mukti , Psychiatric Disorders and Secondary Addictions like Gambling, Internet etc.
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
ALCOHOL AND DRUG ABUSE AFFECTS THE WHOLE FAMILY
Alcohol and drug abuse not only harms the addict, but it can
destroy relationships and also create emotional turmoil for family members and
loved ones as they witness and experience a family member's alcoholism or drug
dependence. Addiction is often referred to as a family
disease and addiction treatment is ideally a family affair. Along with the
addict, family members need and deserve help and support to overcome the
negative effects of alcohol and drug abuse.
Effects of Alcohol and Drug Abuse on the Family
Different family systems will experience different effects
from a loved one's substance abuse disorder, but here are some of the most
common ways drug and alcohol abuse affects the family of an addict.
1. Instability within the family
People suffering from addiction are often unreliable and
cannot be counted on to do what they say. Other family members are left to pick
up the slack when the addict does not attend to his or her responsibilities.
This causes conflict and instability within families, as family members are
continuously let down or can never predict the addict's behaviour.
2. Mistrust, lying and stealing.
Once addiction has taken hold people may turn to lying
and stealing to hide and support their drug abuse. This behaviour, of
course, creates resentment, mistrust, and turmoil within relationships in the
3. Financial distress.
Alcohol and drug abuse can lead to problems at work,
including decreased productivity, missed work and job loss. Addiction creates a
financial burden that may cause families to lose their home, or have difficulty
providing basic needs such as food and healthcare for their children. The
addict may rely on financial support from other family members which further
4. Conflict amongst family members.
Addiction can lead to negativism, where all the
communication taking place amongst the addict and family members is negative.
Anger and resentment can cause family members to lash out at one another.
Complaints, criticism, and put-downs may become the norm which leaves everyone
in the situation feeling bad.
5. Shame and denial.
When one member
experiences addiction, often the whole family will suffer from shame and
denial. Families may work hard to hide the consequences of addiction and
develop elaborate systems of denial that there is any problem at all. Deep
feelings of shame may lead other family members to also abuse substances as a
way to cope.
Effects of Parental Drug Abuse on
Alcohol and drug abuse negatively impacts everyone in the
family, but too often children and adolescents are most affected by the
addiction of a parent.
1. Children may experience neglect
America, 40-80% of all child abuse cases are within families where
alcohol and drug abuse are also present. As well, parents with a substance
abuse problem will often put their addiction first, leaving their children to
fend for themselves, leading to cases of neglect of varied severity.
2. Parental inconsistency.
if severe neglect and abuse are not present, alcohol and drug addiction can
lead to inconsistent parenting, including erratic rules and inconsistent
consequences. In these situations, children may experience confusion about what
is right and wrong, as they receive mixed signals from parents about acceptable
3. Children take on adult roles.
parents suffer from addiction, their children often end up taking on parental
roles. Especially older children in the family may take on responsibility well
past what is expected of other children their age by looking after siblings,
cooking, cleaning, and even providing emotional support to the addicted parent.
4. Emotional instability and
Growing up with parents who abuse drugs and alcohol creates
an environment of chaos and instability. Children from homes where one or both
parents are struggling with addiction can experience shame, guilt, confusion,
fear, and insecurity as their emotional development is not nurtured or made a
priority within the family.
Codependency and Addiction
Alcohol and drug abuse affects intimate relationships in
specific ways, often with one or both partners exhibiting signs of
codependency. Codependency was first observed in partners of alcoholics who
were not alcoholics themselves. Codependency refers to a pattern in
relationships where one person puts the needs of the other in front of their
own. When addiction is present, the addict's partner may fall into the role of
caretaker and display symptoms of codependency. When this relationship pattern
is present both individuals suffer and both often need treatment in order to
The following are a few symptoms of
codependency and ways in which addiction affects those closest to the
stemming from feelings of shame, guilt and inadequacy.
Often spouses will
try hard to be perfect and please their partner, under the false belief that if
only they were good enough their partner would stop using.
believe others cannot take care of themselves which leads them to exhibit
controlling behaviour in all situations.
on the approval of others.
partners may forfeit their own values in order to avoid rejection and anger and
please others. Their self-worth may be based solely on the approval of others
which leads to excessive people pleasing.
about other people to the point of neglecting one's own needs.
They may believe
they are being selfless in their desire to care for the needs of the addict,
but this behaviour is enabling and detrimental to both people in the
Including the Family in Addiction
As of recently, Shafa Home is proud to offer
a comprehensive family programme and we fully encourage the families
of each of our clients to attend. The programme focuses on learning about
addiction, codependency, and the difference between enabling and support. The
programme also offers family therapy sessions so that clients and family
members can begin to rebuild damaged relationships together, in the presence of
a skilled addictions counsellor.
Drug or alcohol rehab is the first step to addiction
recovery, and as the disease affects the whole family it is best if the whole
family is involved in the recovery process as well. In the short time that we
have employed this programme we have received not only an incredibly positive
response from participants, but we have seen immediate progress in family