You are probably well aware of the effects of your drinking on your life – hangovers, inability to concentrate, relationship problems, poor health, weight gain etc. However, if you are a parent, have you given enough consideration to the effects of alcoholism on your children?
Primarily of course, when you’ve had a drink you’re not interacting with them in a rational, responsible way, you may be inconsistent with how you were acting towards them earlier in the day, which can be very confusing.
You may be exposing them to arguments with your partner which they might otherwise not have to see. This is really just the tip of the iceberg of the variety of alcoholic behaviour your children might have witnessed on occasion.
One of the recognised effects of alcoholism on children is that they tend to find it difficult to trust others. They also often learn to suppress their feelings, because any expression of them can cause angry outbursts from the drunken parent.
Beyond that though, they’re learning that drinking alcohol is a normal, regular thing to do. They’re learning that it’s something you do to relax if you’re upset, or tired. Eventually the most likely effect is that your children repeat your pattern of alcohol use themselves.
Before that though, your own health might deteriorate sufficiently that you’re admitted to hospital, or you end up there due to an accident. And nobody wants to think about how horrific it would be to injure your children (or worse) from driving whilst drunk. Have you ever done it?
Alcoholism doesn’t just affect you, it’s affecting those around you too, your children probably more than any other.