Children of Addicts
Addiction doesn’t just hurt the user. One of the greatest victims in the fight against this disease is the children of addicts. The child’s emotional and mental well-being is impacted significantly due to high-stress levels, confusion, and anger. Children of drug addicts and alcoholics are frequently neglected and abused physically and verbally.
Alcoholism is a leading cause of violence and acts of aggression; however, most drugs inflict mood swings and instability that children witness and are made victim to. Staging an intervention and encouraging addicted parents to seek treatment is essential to prevent future abuse, mental disorders, and substance dependency for those children.
Effects on Children of Drug Addicts
Children of addicts will face hardships due to their parent’s substance abuse, whether witnessing highly inappropriate activity or being abused physically, mentally, or emotionally. One of the primary risks when children are exposed to these things is that when they grow up, they may turn to drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism for the trauma they experienced as a child. Other side effects may include:
- Depression or anxiety
- Lack of interest in social activities
- Poor performance in school
- Low self-esteem or irritability
- Risk of physical or sexual abuse
- Struggles to maintain friendships
- Mental health disorders
- Emotional and behavioral problems
It is recommended that individuals who have experienced abuse from addicted parents undergo trauma therapy. If a friend or family member notices an addicted parent hurting their child, they must either lovingly confront the parent or contact the authorities if there is abuse or neglect.
Approaching an addict, especially a parent, is difficult because of the situation’s fragility. Most parents don’t want to be told how to raise their children. However, speaking with the parent(s) in a non-judgmental and empathetic tone can show support while highlighting the urgent need to receive treatment.
The Problem With Excessive Emotional Engagement
Addicted parents may rely heavily on their children, particularly when they are actively under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Depression and anxiety are common side effects of substance abuse, and in that case, the child is the one who is left as the caregiver. For example, a child may be asked to sleep in a parent’s bed during an anxiety attack to provide security. This emotional reliance on a child puts pressure on them to mature quickly to grasp the intense emotions of their mother, father, or both.
On the other hand, parents will frequently blame their children for their addiction. That blame can be highly disturbing to the child and may carry symptoms such as isolation, aggression, panic attacks, or even drug or alcohol abuse. Often with extended drug or alcohol abuse, a parent will neglect the responsibilities that keep their child happy and healthy.
Drug Rehab for Parents at Sunshine Care Centers
At Sunshine Care Centers, we offer rehab for addicted parents who wish to better their home life. We offer various programs to assist in that growth, including music therapy and EMDR therapy. The highly trained staff at Sunshine Care Centers will design a treatment plan that fits your unique needs and recovery goals.
By receiving the proper medical care today, you avoid financial strain, the infliction of childhood trauma, and long-term health complications. We know how hard these changes can be, so we aim to provide the highest quality environment focused on cleanliness, safety, and empathy. At Sunshine Care Centers, you will receive a secure environment to reflect and recover.