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When Parents Are Alcoholics . . .

Discussion in 'Alcohol' started by Rainman, Sep 16, 2015.

  1. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    Is there any hope for the children should they start drinking?

    When parents are alcoholics, how do they help their children should they [the kids] also start drinking? Would any advice the parents offer be heeded?

    Would the parents have to battle and overcome their addiction first before stepping in to help their children?

    Thoughts?
  2. JoshPosh

    JoshPosh Community Champion

    I had parents that drank and did drugs. On occasions I saw them stealing as well. With that being said, how can any adult tell their children that drugs and alcohol is bad for you? They do it, and by doing so, then enable kids to drink and do drugs as well. We go to school and we know that drugs and alcohol is bad for you, but your parents are doing it freely and recklessly. He'll they stole to support their habits and that just gave me the green light to do it as well. And they wonder why I got in trouble with the law when I was a teenager. They did it and that had conflicting thougts in my head as what is acceptable.
    lalabee21 likes this.
  3. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    It is hard for a parent to tell a child something is wrong and not good for them if they are doing it themselves. They would have to set an example for their child by getting clean and staying away from the very things they are warning their child about. My niece was brought up with an alcoholic parent and to this day she doesn't drink. She seen so much. She hates alcohol and what it does to people. It ruined her childhood. She grew into a very mature, independent young lady who is doing extremely well in her life despite what she went through. I am so proud of her.
  4. Matthodge1

    Matthodge1 Community Champion

    I have a friend whose mom is an alcoholic and an avid meth user. He cannot listen to or respect anything that she has to say because she is always out of her mind on something. It's hard for a child to respect or even remotely like their parents if they are constantly on substances.
  5. Matthodge1

    Matthodge1 Community Champion

    Exactly. Adults should be just that: adults. Adults should give up the stupid habits and the irresponsible behavior whenever they become an adult. It's sad.
  6. kgord

    kgord Community Champion

    Children are much more likely to look at the example of the parent, and instead of listening to what they say, will watch what they do. This is just how life works. However, I think if parents are struggling with getting clean and sober they could tell their children that, and tell them how life has been for them. This may allow children to see more the realities of he situation and view the parents as a cautionary tale.
  7. FuZyOn

    FuZyOn Community Champion

    It really depends here. While my dad is an alcoholic and doesn't take care of himself at all, my mother kind of took the lead and made me understand the grief I would cause. I didn't start drinking because of my father, I started drinking because I couldn't handle my problems anymore (I know that was bad, I'm sober now). He didn't have any influence.
  8. singingintherain

    singingintherain Community Champion

    I think it can really go in either direction. So many factors contribute to make us the way we are, and I think this is no exception.

    I think the ideal situation is for the children to be cared for by someone other than the parents if they are alcoholics. It's important to ensure the children are aware of the situation though, just in an age appropriate way. Being aware of the damage that alcohol can cause is helpful in showing the negative side of its use.
  9. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    Those parents should realize that they are not just destroying their lives but the lives of their kids as well. They should try to change and be able to tell their kids that addiction is bad. If the parents cannot be good role models, the kids should have other relatives that could take care of them.
  10. Ali16

    Ali16 Senior Contributor

    My parents drank and I began to have problems with drinking in my early 20's. Having grown up in an alchoholic household is probably what caused me to STOP drinking as quickly as I did. I realized I was doing the exact the same things I'd grown up being exposed to....people drinking until they fell over, drunk driving, wild parties, etc. when I realized I was heading down the same road my dad had taken, it was what motivated me to stop.
  11. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    If the parents are alcoholics and their children somehow followed their footsteps, then I think it would be a pretty tough situation for all of them. If all family members have drinking issues, I don't think it would still be a functional one.
  12. pwarbi

    pwarbi Community Champion

    Both my parents drank heavily when I was growing up but I think it depends on the nature of the child how they turn out. A child could follow in the footsteps of their parents because it's all they're used to, and as soon as they're allowed to start drinking they will do and the cycle will repeat itself.

    Other times, a child could use their parents as motivation not to turn out like that and seeing their parents drink could be a blessing in disguise because they'll know just how destructive alcohol can be.
  13. lalabee21

    lalabee21 Active Contributor

    Well, they say that environment plays one of the biggest factors in alcoholism and addictions in general, so kids with alcoholic parents have a bigger chance to have problems with this. However, it will all depend in the individual, or they either hate it or they follow the pattern. There’s nothing written, but kids of alcoholic parents do have a big chance to become addicts.
  14. Coolkidhere

    Coolkidhere Community Champion

    I guess when the child starts drinking, it can be difficult to stop him or her. Control is hard to do when you have parents who also cannot control themselves. The parents have to be responsible and show their kids that they can stop drinking for them to follow through their steps. Any advice given by the parents will not be listened to because they are not role models themselves.
  15. 6eexthsense

    6eexthsense Member

    Kids who have parents who are alcoholics, in my opinion have a 9 out of 10 chance of towing the wrong example set by their parents, because kids can be very impressionable and whatever they see they want to experiment or emulate. The big question is "How can such an alcoholic parent advice their kid(s) against such an act when they themselves are married to the bottle? How do they command respect? This is quite an unfortunate situation especially for the kids who are just starting out in life.
  16. 6eexthsense

    6eexthsense Member

    You are right on this because I had a father and uncle that were drunks (they are not now) but just hearing them sharing how they sometimes drank and slept off in their puke brought about revulsion for anything alcoholic. Now my dad and uncle jokingly tell me now and then that I dnt have to walk that path because they have drank "my share". But I dare say that this is a very small number!
  17. vegito12

    vegito12 Community Champion

    It can be hard to get along with the parents as the children don't have a good role model in their life and may end up drinking themselves, and being addicted to drugs from the parent's example which can be sad for the young children. I reckon that it can be interesting to see what happens when the parents may excuse themselves, but when the children do it, then the parents try and tell them off for it. I think that it is sad to see some families which are broken by alcohol as it can ruin lives and also the relationships when alcohol is abused by the parents.
  18. Mara

    Mara Community Champion

    My dad was an alcoholic and my brothers and I somehow followed in his footsteps. We were quite heavy drinkers (back in the day). But, as weird as this may sound, we are actually okay. We turned out fine I guess. HA!HA! But I guess my dad was different from others who are dependent on alcohol. My dad was a good provider. And even if he was an alcoholic, he still performed his responsibilities as one good father should. Damn! I miss his cooking.
  19. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    Most parents want the best for their children, but alcoholism completely changes people. Take my mom as an example, she was an alcoholic, and thought it was ok for her 7 or 6 year old to take little zips to her beer. So basically alcohol strips you from common sense and good parenting values. Everything is valid when you are an alcoholic, you think things that are so inappropriate are funny and so on. You get the idea.

    I was lucky my mom wasn't a child beater (not quite, she did hit me several times, but it stopped after a while). Up until I was 13 I was afraid when I hear her screaming my name in a very angry way... It could have gone worse for me, it's hard to imagine, but I still count my blessings.
  20. Rowe992

    Rowe992 Senior Contributor

    Having alcoholic parents doesn't equate to children being alcoholic because if the child or children see how the parents suffer from it then that alone can make them decide to not drink because of not wanting to end up like their parents. It may also mean that the child will suffer from abuse because of the alcoholic parents.