Substance abuse not only substantially affects the person who has the addiction, but also the environment his/her family grows up in. Families that grow up in a substance abuse household are more likely to have financial problems, behavioral problems, and incidences of domestic violence.
According to research, most of the children involved in the welfare system have parents that are substance abusers. Many factors play into this research. Money that would be used for food, clothing, and education for the children would be put towards the addiction. Money that would be put towards rent or mortgages on the home would also be used for buying the substance of choice. This obviously would have a huge affect on how the family lives and the environment the family is surrounded by.
The relationship between other family members, like the children, and the substance abuser, as we see in studies, is poor. There is a strong sense of neglect and disconnect between them. Children with drug addicted parents often have a higher level of aggression, delinquency, hyperactivity, impulsivity, anxiety, less differentiation of self. These affects on the child psyche affects not only how they are in school, but how they develop into an adolescent and then an adult.
Lastly, violence within the family is highly linked with substance abuse. Alcohol abuse is the most apparent in domestic violence. Studies in the United States show that 30 to 40 percent of men and 27 to 34 percent of women who are responsible for the violence were drinking around the same time it started. The addition of violence in the home with the substance abuse lead to a negative environment that have long lasting effects on the family and its structure.
Posted by Heather Saide
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