Addiction has an impact on every member of the families it affects — even the little ones. Children living in households touched by substance abuse may exhibit any number of reactions to it, and it is up to the adults in their lives to help explain and contextualize them.
Some of these reactions include taking on an increased role in family tasks, a need to everything correctly, becoming withdrawn and acting out aggressively. These responses are understandable, especially since periods of substance abuse can introduce a high volume of stress and unease into their routines.
It's important to explain to children that it's ok to have strong feelings, even scary ones. The adults in their lives should tell them that it is OK for them to reach out and divulge the emotions that they're having, and that there won't be any judgment if they need help.
If you or someone you care about is struggling with addiction, we can help. Contact Fairwinds Treatment Center to learn more about our comprehensive dual diagnosis treatment programs.