No one ever wants to be a victim of substance abuse, but millions of Americans today face the problem. Unfortunately, children make up quite a significant proportion of sufferers; and their parents greatly play a role in this. Wondering how? Let’s read on to find out.
When people consume drugs and other substances abusively, they tend to become unstable, inconsistent and chaotic. Naturally, children pick up attitudes very easily from their parents and the people they grow up with. Parents know this rule too well, yet most of them either ignore or disregard it. They go ahead and smoke cigarettes and even marijuana in the presence of their children.
The children in turn see this attitude as acceptable, and before their parents realize, the children start consuming and eventually abusing substances.
Children generally flow with their parents
People who drink heavily and smoke often find justifications for their substance abuse. Some of them claim they are old enough to drink and smoke and others say the products are legal. They seem to be of the opinion that because the products are legal, it’s OK for them to abuse them. Unfortunately, these people abuse the consumption of these substances in the presence of their children. They fail to understand that children perceive their actions differently.
When children see their parents abusing alcohol, marijuana or any other substance, only one thing settles in their mind; if it’s OK for their parents to do it; it’s OK for them, too. They kind of rationalize in their minds that their own substance use is justified.
Children see parents as role models
It is almost impossible for a parent to prevent substance use and abuse in their child if the parent engages in it. Like we’ve already highlighted, children see their parents as role models. Whatever their parents do, they tend to see it as the correct thing to emulate. Parents therefore greatly influence substance abuse in their children. The rule is simple; if you are parent and you do not want your child to involve in substance use and abuse, you have to yourself abstain from it completely.
Addictive parents are abusive and that affects their children
Parents who are substance addicts inflict great pain on their family. They tend to abuse their families either verbally, physically or otherwise. Their children generally suffer the consequences more and this could have damaging psychosocial effects on them. In a bid to sort out these effects, these children easily sway towards the direction of their parents, engaging in the consumption and abuse of all types of substances.
Addictive parents abandon their children and that also affects them negatively
When parents become addicts, there is a high tendency that they will abandon their responsibility towards their family, or just neglect it. They will channel a lot more of their resources to their substance and very little to their family’s welfare. They will barely have time to spend with their family, and they’ll generally not show love to their children.
At some point, the children may want to relieve themselves of the emotional trauma such situations put them in, and the consequence will be drug abuse.
The bottom line: parents have a great influence on their children. If you are a parent and you are an addict, you will very likely push your child to become an addict too.