Growing up in families with alcohol addiction

Growing up in Alcohol-addicted families\n\nAbout 30 million children are born to alcoholic parents, according to the National Association of Children of Alcoholics. The word alcoholic adult child (ACoA) was coined in an attempt to describe the unique characteristics that were generally found in people who grew up with parents, where either one or both had to struggle with alcohol abuse.

After reading about the effect that their alcoholism can have on their children now and into adulthood, parents dealing with alcoholism may be saddened and worried. Nevertheless, their children may find relief in understanding what may have led to some of the problems they face today.

Evidence of children affected by alcoholic parents:

Recent evidence shows that teenagers who live with alcoholic parents are at significant risk for several mental, psychological, and behavioral problems compared to peers not born by alcoholic parents. Teenagers who live with alcoholic parents are the category at the highest risk of future drug and alcohol problems, likely due to both genetic and environmental factors. They are more likely to suffer child abuse and neglect, compounding existing mental disease and substance abuse predispositions.


After growing up in an atmosphere where the norm may have been denial, lying, and keeping secrets, young teens of alcoholic parents can develop serious problems of trust. Broken previous expectations warn them that in the present, trusting someone is going to backfire on them.

Because of problems of trust or lack of self-esteem, teenagers of alcoholic parents often struggle with romantic relationships or avoid getting close to others.

It's difficult for some teenagers of alcoholics to give themselves a break. If they had a tumultuous upbringing, they often feel insufficient when compared to others and feel they are never good enough. They may have little self-worth or low self-esteem and may experience intense inadequacy feelings.

A teenager who lives with alcoholic parents may feel that he is different from others and, therefore, not good enough. As a result, they can avoid social interactions, have trouble making friends, and as a result, separate themselves.


When adolescents begin to grow and experience puberty difficulties, misuse of parental substances has a direct impact on their well-being and actions. In some cases, the alcoholism of the parent influences the abuse of a teen's own substance and the need for treatment afterward. Wherever teenagers live or who their parents are, they are wired to create an identity, form meaningful relationships outside the home, and act impulsively at times. Teenage activity often also includes alcohol, narcotics, or other chemicals experimenting. Surveys found that about 70% of U.S. high school students had at least one alcoholic drink, while 22% had 5 or more alcoholic drinks.

Drinking and intoxication can also adversely affect relationships and friendships between intimate and family. In small and isolated communities, the adverse effects are often most clearly visible. There were 29 alcohol-related deaths in 10 years in an Australian indigenous group of 165 adults and 111 alcohol-related injuries and diseases in 7 years.

In the United States, at the time of the incident, 5 percent of parental child abuse offenders consumed either alcohol or drugs. In Germany, at the time of the crime, about 32 percent of fatal child abuse offenders (1985–90) was under the influence of alcohol, and 7 percent of offenders suffered from chronic alcoholism. In the Northern Territory, Australia, FAS, and FAE are registered at 1.7 per 1000 live births, significantly increasing to 4.7 per 1000 live births among indigenous people.

As many as 76 million Americans (about 45 percent of the population) were subjected in their families to some form of alcoholism and addictive behaviors, and as many as 26.8 million of those people were children. That part of the population is more likely than children in non-alcoholic families to develop alcoholism or some other kind of drug abuse. They also have a higher risk of getting married to an alcoholic than children who have grown up without their parents ' exposure to problem drinking.

Teenagers who were vulnerable to domestic violence as their parents ' children grew up without being able to control their feelings. They were exposed to harmful behavioral patterns, and in their lives, they had no one to help them deal with what they saw and what was happening to them. They became frightened and depressed as a result. Unhealthy alcohol consumption had become so common that different types of substance abuse were viewed as appropriate ways of dealing with emotions.


The National Alcoholic Children's Association reports that those growing up with alcoholic parents are four times more likely to develop an addiction in their own adult lives than children growing up in better conditions. The key phrase, though, is ´most likely.´ It is not a guarantee of future addiction to be born into an alcoholic family. Other considerations, such as diet, mental health structure, ethnicity, climate, and genes, need to be taken into account.

Teens living with an alcoholic parent are more likely to struggle with substance abuse. If you have a teenager, who has or may have a problem with substance abuse, seek professional care so that he or she can start the process of recovery now.


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