Effects of Drug Abuse on Families

Exclusively available on PapersOwl
Updated: May 16, 2022
Cite this
Date added
Pages:  6
Words:  1699
Order Original Essay

How it works


In the USA, the family units have emerged to much complicated. Families continue to evolve ranging from the extended, nuclear and up to the single parenting family setups. Others are the stepfamilies, multigenerational and the foster types of families. Thus, abuse by a member of the family of substances may result in differences based on the formation of the family itself. This paper presents a discussion on the issues of treatment that may emerge within the various structures of the family such following the abuse of substances.

Need a custom essay on the same topic?
Give us your paper requirements, choose a writer and we’ll deliver the highest-quality essay!
Order now

Issues associated with treatment that include the economic impacts related to substance abuse will be explored together with the psychological effects where the parents, children and the spouse undergo.


According to Abuse & Administration (2016), substance abuse has defined impacts on various structures of the family. For instance, young parents may make attempt in compensating for the deficiencies developed abusing spouse as a result of the abuse of the substance. In many scenarios, children may serve as the surrogate types of spouses for the very parents that fond of abusing the substances. On the same note, children may find themselves developing complicated systems of denial while seeking to accord themselves, the protection of the reality from the addiction done by their parents. Since the alternative does not exist among the single leading parenting families who are substance abusers, children stand a chance in behaving in a way that is not age desirable in compensating for the parental form of deficiency.

The effects associated with the abuse tend to go past the nuclear family setups. Members of the extended types of families may undergo feelings associated abandonment, fear, anger, anxiety, embarrassment, guilt or concern; they may prefer ignoring or delink themselves from people known to be abusing the substances (Ewing et al. 2015). Certain members of the family may even have a feeling of the need for protection legally from persons who abuse the substances. On top of this, the effects towards the families may continue prolonging for several generations. Intergenerational impacts associated with substance may have negative forms of impacts on the role played by modelling, confidence and the ideas related to normative forms of behavior that may result into the damage of the connection among the generations. For instance, a child with a parent that is fond of abusing substances may in future be an overprotective and strict parent who never allows his children enough independence (Ewing et al. 2015). Similarly, employees, neighbours and friends may also encounter the experience linked with the substance abuse since the person that does the abuse is normally not reliable. Consequently, they may end up in resenting to the person that abuses the substances.

Drug abuser staying alone or with a partner

The consequences linked with an adult who abuses substances and stays lonely or with his or her partner are heading towards being psychological or economic. The user of the drugs may eventually spend all money as the partner rides on an assumption that money for meeting their needs will ever be ready (Jalilian et al. 2015). Certain psychological impacts that may have an impact on the user of the drug and the partner as well are the security or the denial of the individual who is suffering from addiction or drug abuse, prolonged anger, anxiety, stress, desperation, unsatisfied sexual demand, deteriorating health standards, isolation and stigmatization. From this particular situation, it becomes essential in learning that the very couples are in great need of assistance. The treatment accorded may be of great help if both the partners are treated (Sandler, Ingram, Wolchik, Tein & Winslow, 2015). Where one lacks the immediate relatives, it then should also factor the use of the therapies. Issues associated with the loss of loved ones, estranged cases or family roots may still need treatment. A person that does the abuse of the substance may remain to have the effect of distant relatives who may be ready to be involved in therapy medications. Where a member of the family hails from a distance, intensive forms of sessions may be of need and also of great help as well.

Drug users residing with the spouse and children

In a similar manner as the mishandling of people, who have a belief in abuse being their fault, kids who belong to those suffering from disorders related to abuse of alcohol tend to have a feeling of guilt and also seem to have a lot of concern on the parents’ problem of drinking. Children being brought by parents abusing illicit drugs are living with the idea that their respective parents’ deeds are not legal and they may be subjected to indulge in activities that are illegal on behalf of their respective parents (Sandler, Ingram, Wolchik, Tein & Winslow, 2015). Trust is paramount to the development of a child and may form the ever continuous struggle for the systems of a family with a member that has or experience substance misuse or disorder.

Majority of the present data covering on the impacts of parental forms of substance use or abuse among children give the suggestion that the drinking problem among parents normally has a negative impact on children. The data in these cases reveal that the problem of alcohol among parents may be linked with behavioral, emotional, cognitive and psychosocial impacts towards children (Jalilian et al. 2015). Part of the prolonged problems being witnessed is the impaired cases of learning capability; propensity towards the development of the substance case of use disorder, problems of adjustment such as the increment in the divorce rates, incidences of violence plus the need for managing relationships as well as mental cases of disorders like depression, low esteem and anxiety. Sandler, Ingram, Wolchik, Tein & Winslow, (2015) added that children belonging to women who are fond of abusing substances at the time of pregnancy have higher chances of being affected with fetal cases of the syndrome, low cases of birth weight and sexual infections.

Drug use among multiple families

Studies taken from the technocrats in the field of health have established that persons fond of abusing drugs are mostly from the stepfamilies. Irrespective of the normal circumstances, extended families have their respective challenges. For example, kids often live in two household units where various boundaries and unique roles many times lead to confusion. Effective instances of parenting need proper communication and proper attention towards the likely areas that may result into conflict (Ewing et al. 2015), not just among the biological based parents, but again also other newcomers. Children hailing from the extended families may be affected problems of drug abuse as they seek to adapt with the confusion from their respective family regulations and boundaries. Abuse of drugs may lead to complicated problems and thus causing more setbacks to the stability and the integration of the step-family as well. Where the abuse of substance constitutes the family, certain issues that are very unique may chip in or emerge. The issues may entail the parental disputes when administering authority, abuse either physically or sexually and problems of self-esteem among children.

Abuse of drugs by the step parents may at times result into the awakening of the children’s power, result into the difficulty in the formation of bonds and the impairment of the ability of the family in addressing the problems and issues that are very sensitive. Where the non-custodial type of parent does the abuse of drugs or even alcohol, visitation may require supervision (Sandler, Ingram, Wolchik, Tein & Winslow, 2015). Irrespective of this, visitation is very essential. In case of the contact halts, children tend to put blames among themselves or the problem of the drug due to the absence of parents. In any case, an adolescent or a child ends in abusing drugs; an experience within the house may result in conflict and ever persisting crisis. Scientists have established that increment in the abuse of marijuana by the adolescent mostly takes place often where an adolescent residing with a divorced parent and step-parent becomes less connected with the family. With fewer linkages to the family, the possibilities of the adolescent forming attachments increase towards the peers abusing the substances. Weaker linkages with the family and stronger cases to peers that use drugs result in an increment in the likelihood of the adolescent beginning to use marijuana or increment in the use of marijuana itself.

Parents abusing drugs

According to Caetano, Schafer &Cunradi (2017), it is clear that parent with a problem of alcohol or drug may impact negatively on the members of the family. For example, the person suffering from the problem may be stuck in a given quagmire. The other members of the family in their determination of helping, tend to be discouraged in aiding their help. The very first step of putting things in the right manner is the moment when others embark on the initiatives from a given start point. Just after they have managed to do this, they will find themselves in a position of assisting in tackling the problem of addiction. On the other hand, it may not be easy in residing with an individual that drinks or uses drugs since they are fond of causing commotions or other related problems (Donohue et al. 2014). The user of drugs is normally in a conflict where he or she is ever after the alcohol or drug while not after harming that tends to follow. In the end, they shift blames on others after things have gone wrong.


At any age of abusing the drug, it still has a chance of causing dangerous health implications. However, teens abusing drugs have greater chances of being affected with certain risks of negative significance. Teens fond of abusing drugs in excess have chances of struggling to come out of addiction during their respective life periods since they will have suffered a permanent case of damage to the brain. Also, abuse of drugs may lead to emotional related problems that include mood changes, depression, incidences of suicide and schizophrenia. For sure, among the teens that suffer from major cases of depression, thirty-five per cent are representing reported cases of drug abuse. Irrespective of this, the abuse of drugs may also lead to the increment in the severity of the emotional related problems.

The deadline is too short to read someone else's essay
Hire a verified expert to write you a 100% Plagiarism-Free paper

Cite this page

Effects of Drug Abuse on Families. (2020, Apr 29). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/effects-of-drug-abuse-on-families/