Sadly, we live in a world where abuse is a part of it. There are many different types of abuse that surround us daily. However, I'd like to focus on one specific type of abuse among children. That abuse is how alcohol abuse among parents can backfire and have an impact on the children in the home of said abuser. Daily, kids are dealing with the consequences of having a parent abuse alcohol. 1 in 10 children have a parent who abuses alcohol.
Effects on a child who lives with a parent who abuses alcohol:
- Guilt. The child may see himself or herself as the main cause of the mother's or father's drinking.
- Anxiety. The child may worry constantly about the situation at home. He or she may fear the alcoholic parent will become sick or injured, and may also fear fights and violence between the parents.
- Embarrassment. Parents may give the child the message that there is a terrible secret at home. The ashamed child does not invite friends home and is afraid to ask anyone for help.
- Inability to have close relationships. Because the child has been disappointed by the drinking parent many times, he or she often does not trust others.
- Confusion. The alcoholic parent will change suddenly from being loving to angry, regardless of the child's behavior. A regular daily schedule, which is very important for a child, does not exist because bedtimes and mealtimes are constantly changing.
- Anger. The child feels anger at the alcoholic parent for drinking, and may be angry at the non-alcoholic parent for lack of support and protection.
- Depression. The child feels lonely and helpless to change the situation.
Children are not asked to be born into this world and they sure don't ask to be abused along the way. These kids are our future, they're going to be the ones running our towns, they will be employed somewhere, etc. Children are at risk to suffer so much when dealing with a parent who abuses any kind of substance, not just alcohol.
Alcoholics cannot be responsible enough to take care of a child. Every day a child is dealing with this kind of abuse and every day they suffer the consequences of it. Every day someone watches a child deal with this and today needs to be the day people start standing up. Today needs to be the day that people put their pride aside and do what's best for the child they're seeing abused.