When Alcoholism Is Left Untreated in Families for Too Long

Children see what happens in their homes far more in-depth than a lot of people realize. They don't simply watch what everyone sees, but they also see what most people don't see. If they are children of alcoholics, then they are not only seeing that alcohol consumption is tolerated and likely expected, but they are also seeing the way people react to their parent(s) addiction. This can form the idea that addiction will be a part of their lives, early on.

Most children of alcoholics have long-term issues, such as issues with self-image, and relationship trouble, when they get to be adults. They typically have trouble trusting others, as most of their encounters growing up involved them not having whatever they were promised, come true. When parents go into an alcohol rehabilitation program, whether it is inpatient our outpatient, they often learn how to better control these situations, giving the children the ability to start to get their life back and learn how to trust.

The long-term effects of alcoholic parents can be overcome, if caught early, and consistent therapy or treatment is offered and accepted. Just because a child grows up with an addict as a parent, does not doom that child to a life of misery. It just means that the support group of that child has to be there to undo the damage that his or her parents did by allowing their addiction to control their life.


Gold, M.S. "Children of Alcoholics." PsychCentral (Website). (2013).
  • 2 Commentsby Likes|Date
  • This is so incredibly true and hardly realized. Kids are sponges. They soak up everything a person does and says and mimics them. They learn from other adults how to act in life situations. It's so scary and sad when kids have to grow up in an environment like that.
  • Couldn't agree more about the impact that alcoholism has on children. In fact, I imagine any sort of addiction, or even marital disputes/issues would be picked up upon by children too. Yes, they're young - but I feel like children are perceptive to so much more than we give them credit for a lot of the time.
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