Being addicted to prohibited drugs or substances may be usually viewed as an individual struggle. The person responsible for using the substance may only think of his own and never think of his or her loved ones. The belief that it can initially alleviate their feelings of loneliness may have pushed them to use the substance. Or even peers can influence them in doing so. But one should always remember that people surrounding the victim are even more devastated once they know what is happening. Giving on to substance addiction certainly damages the family, including your parents, children, or your spouse.
Certainly, drug and alcohol addiction have both temporary and permanent effects on the individual or to the family. Drug and substance addicts can cause chaos and division to a once harmonious and peaceful home. Arguments and petty fights will become a normal occurrence once a family member is known to have started being addicted to prohibited drugs or alcohol. We may not know how and why they started to get addicted, but they will usually be judged once this happens. The relationship among family members will be affected, and married couples will likely end their marriage because of distrust and lack of communication.
The use of drugs will surely consume you in the long run, and you may find that having relationships with anyone, including your family members, is now a burden. Distancing yourself from the family is a usual tendency for people who have become dependents on prohibited drugs and alcohol. Any productive activity that comes your way may just be a disturbance to you, whether it is work, school, or even engaging in sports.
According to experts, most users and victims of drug abuse and substance addiction also grew up in a home wherein these abuses are first experienced among parents. Seeing your parents suffering from this kind of addiction will surely affect a child. And there is a major tendency that the child will develop the same disorder as seen in their household.
Children are also likely to be physically or sexually abused when being brought up in this kind of household. The feeling of being neglected or abused is usually among the reasons why children, especially teenagers, resort to substance or alcohol abuse. And also, seeing personally your parents doing drugs causes unstable and traumatic feelings, which may lead to delays in their development as well as possible tendencies of having to develop disorders on the mental and emotional aspects.
When one starts using drugs, you will lose the trust of the people around you. Losing your focus and concentration may be among the effects once you get addicted to it, so there will be tendencies that you will forget important responsibilities resulting in their distrust. Another damaging effect would be your defiance against your parents or guardians.
I have personally seen this situation with one of my cousins, who was getting addicted to drugs without his parents knowing for a long time. They start getting suspicious when errands and requests aren’t being done and are always late to arrive at home almost every night. He also tends to talk back to his parents and older siblings when being reprimanded, which he usually doesn’t do. He also expresses anger irrationally, which also angers his parents more. He also started stealing valuable items from their household, which made the whole family realize that he is getting addicted to drugs.
At first, I can say that we are in denial and still believe that what we hear from his friends and classmates are all lies. We still believe that he is still the diligent and hardworking boy that we know. This happened when he entered college away from our hometown. I may not personally know if they are having problems with their own family but based on our relationships with the extended family, I can see that the relationship is okay and that resorting to drug or alcohol abuse is out of our minds.
But then it happened, and the whole family should face the truth, especially his immediate family. His parents were devastated, of course, and always asks for our prayers because we know that too much anger and reprimanding won’t help him. There will be a possibility that he will retaliate instead.
Thankfully, we have surpassed that obstacle, and he is now working as a front liner in fighting against the Coronavirus. It is not easy to have a family member getting addicted to prohibited drugs or alcohol. I have realized that having a complete family is not a guarantee that any family member will not be a victim of such damaging vices. Maybe, more understanding and patience are needed when dealing with your children, especially teenagers. They are the ones who are prone to try these things, maybe because of curiosity and some pressure from friends. But I do believe that spending time with them and listening to their whereabouts can be a big help in avoiding these vices.
Having a bonding time with the whole family, even just in your home, will surely create a positive impact in a child’s life, making them realize that resorting to such dangerous acts will lead them to nowhere.