Alcoholism is a disease that not only affects the individual who has it, but the entire family. If you think that your family is not being affected, it’s time to take a closer look at the issue because there are short and long-term effects that occur in the home.
Your Relationship With Your Partner
One of the first things that is affected when you become dependent upon alcohol is your relationship with your partner will begin to suffer. You may get into more arguments. He or she may get angry with the amount you’re drinking or the things you say or do when drinking. You may begin to neglect your partner and choose the booze or drinking buddies instead of quality time with your partner. This is why many relationships have ended due to alcoholism.
Your Relationship With Your Children
Even though you adore your children, when you become addicted to alcohol, your relationship with them may suffer. You may choose to drink instead of spending time with them. You may get drunk and act inappropriately in front of them. You may also get mean and verbally or physically abuse them. At the very least, when you’re drinking, you’re not able to fully be present with your children as alcohol decreases the ability to focus and be fully present.
Your Money Goes to the Booze
It’s no secret that alcohol can be expensive, so when you continually spend money on your drinking habits, a lot of money goes out the window. This can cause some issues in the home, from not having enough to pay your bills to not being able to provide the essentials for your family.
Plenty of divorced couples will tell you the primary culprit of the divorce was an alcohol addiction that went untreated. Alcohol addiction certainly increases your chances of divorce by a significant amount and as such, the whole family is affected. In fact, as reported in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, a study called the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) indicated that marriages that had one or both partners struggling with alcohol abuse were 18% more likely to get divorced than those who had no alcohol issues.
The Children Have Issues
Children that grow up with alcoholics tend to have more emotional issues than those that grow up in a household where drinking is not an issue. In fact, many children grow up repeating the same drinking behaviors as the alcoholic parent, becoming alcoholics themselves. In fact, according to the National Association for Children of Alcoholics, the likelihood of children of alcoholics becoming alcoholics themselves is four times more likely than non-COA’s and about 33 percent of alcoholics have at least one parent who is or was an alcoholic. In addition, others may become codependent, care-taking, people pleasing, and seeking their value in others.
Chronic alcoholics may encounter health problems like cirrhosis of the liver, cardiovascular disease, and seizures, which can certainly affect the family. Poor health can rob your family of money, peace of mind, and your physical presence.
The average alcoholic cannot really see how their alcohol addiction affects others. They’re in denial. If you’re struggling with alcoholism–even as a high functioning alcoholic–and you think drinking is not affecting your family, think again. You’re battling a disease that is cunning and baffling. It robs you and your family of more than you may realize.
Take some time to really take a look at yourself and your family. Have an open discussion and ask your partner and children how they feel about your drinking. Ask them to be gut-wrenching honest. Then, consider cutting out your drinking. If you need help, reach out. It’s time to put things into perspective and make the necessary changes that give you and your family peace of mind and joy.
Dominica Applegate is dedicated to the art of self-discovery and creative expression with a passion for creative art. She’s got a deep-rooted passion for helping others heal emotional pain and trauma, as her own journey through love addiction has served as a catalyst for her own healing and beautiful transformation. Find out more at www.dominicaapplegate.com.