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Hi, my neighbors have a problem. The family consists of three members-parents and a teenage child. Father is addicted to alcohol and constantly comes home drunk. A lot of embarrassing situations were seen at their door step. We tried to help, but they do not think that there is a problem. I can see that the child of our neighbors has changed. Can you tell me how does having addicted parent influence a teenage child?

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Hi, this problem is often seen. Usually the parent is addicted to alcohol, like your neighbor but there are also drug addicted parents. I too had some close encounters with alcohol addicted parents and their teenage children but fortunately everything turned out fine. There are many very common traits that can shoe if a child has an addictive parent, but also some characteristics are very unique. Because of that, it is sometimes very difficult to spot that a teen has an addicted parent. Teens also try to solve the problem by themselves. Sometimes they draw attention by doing exactly what the parent does hoping that there will come to a bargain (“I will quit if you do”). There are also times when they idealize their parents since a child is embarrassed by the parent’s behavior. Some other characteristics are also known but these are the most common. The best thing that can be done is admitting the parent to a clinic. That move will be seen as a hope by a teenager. I suggest you talk to your neighbor about this or call authorities and complain about that issue.
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Ok that's horrible advice! And not true in the majority of cases. I can confidently tell you this because 1. I have lived it!!!! And 2. I see it every day in my work. I work in a mental health hospital with mentally ill and addicts. I can tell you that while very few kids who have alcoholic parents end up being alcoholics. It is more a issue of strain on the child. It develops more emotionally that just following in a parents footsteps. No teenager will pick up drinking to tell their parents I'll stop if you do....that's really stupid. It would be very rare if that happened. Most kids who are mentally stable and not jeaprodized from the beginning where it has become a typical thing will not aspire to be this way. Yes they will try to change the parents but only when they get old enough to confront the parent without being scared too. I was able to change my dad. At 18 I decided to let him know how I felt but also that I would never give up on him like everyone else had. It took 18 years of hardships as a child to meet my true dad by the time he was a grandfather to my kids. A great grandfather! People can change and your kids are the best person to make that happen. Not all parents will change. Harder drugs are worse and often devide families. But giving up on people is the worst thing you could ever do. Let this kid deal with his life it honestly is non of your business. If he wants to talk or ask for help then help otherwise leave it alone.

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Just because someone has a alcoholic parent does not always mean they are abusive. Calling the cops and complaining will just cause more issues for the child and the neighbors. This is never a good way to deal with a situation. Lets say you turn this guy in and he blames the kid for it and in a drunk rage kills the kid. That's on you for starting it you would have to live with that or he blames the wife, or he harms himself. Alcaholism and addiction come from depression and anxiety or experiencing trauma at some point. Who is to say the didn't have a previous child that died and the father can't deal with the hurt. You don't know people situations and other people's actions can have a great effect on the outcome of any situation for better or worse.
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