When people have a severe problem with alcohol, it affects their entire family. If you believe you have alcoholic parents, it’s important to understand the definition of alcoholism as well as warning signs that can help you to determine the severity of your family’s situation. Only then will you know if you would benefit from professional help.
What Is Alcoholism?
Many people can have a drink or two now and then without major difficulty. However, some cannot regulate the amount they drink even when it negatively impacts their lives. There are five subtypes of alcoholics:
- Young adult alcoholics– These people are in their late teens or 20s and tend to binge drink due to social and cultural pressure. Many in this group do not seek help, believing their drinking is just a part of growing up.
- Young antisocial alcoholics– These people are usually in their 20s and probably have done a lot of binge drinking. Many of these young people also have a mental illness.
- Functional alcoholics– Often middle-aged and employed, these may be the definition of your alcoholic parents. They often compartmentalize their drinking, with family members enabling it or picking up the pieces if negative consequences arise. This group might deny that they need help since everything appears to be going well in their lives.
- Intermediate familial alcoholics– Also often middle-aged, these people generally come from families of alcoholics. They often also have other mental illnesses and substance abuse problems. Professionals should help these men and women with all aspects of their disorder.
- Chronic severe alcoholics– This group is only a small percentage of the population but is the “stereotypical” alcoholic. This group often struggles with mental illness, substance abuse, homelessness, health problems, legal and financial difficulties, and family issues. Professional help is crucial for a successful recovery to occur.
Signs That You May Have Alcoholic Parents
Especially if your mother and father appear to be stable and holding jobs, you might find it hard to determine if they are alcoholics. Below is a list of some of the signs to be on the lookout for:
- Blackouts or memory loss
- Making excuses for drinking and related consequences
- Making drinking a priority over important people or priorities
- Lying about drinking or the amount drunk
- Frequent hangovers
If you have alcoholic parents, you may be feeling angry, unloved and unimportant. Because severe drinking affects everyone in the household, high-quality professional intervention includes addiction help for families as well.
How Steps to Recovery Can Help
Alcohol is not just destroying your parents’ lives; it is damaging yours. Steps to Recovery in Levittown, PA can provide the supportive treatment that will help individuals battling alcohol and other substances as well as their families to find lasting healing. Our partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient and outpatient programs give individuals and their families the tools to understand their addiction and any other co-dependencies or illnesses that are also happening. Over time, we can help people learn the skills they will need to live in their communities without the crutch of drinking successfully. Our ongoing outpatient program includes the following features:
- Weekly group therapy
- Bi-weekly individual therapy
- Family counseling
- Support around employment issues
- Referrals to community resources
If you are concerned about your alcoholic parents, you don’t need to worry alone. Call our caring and knowledgeable specialists at 866-488-8684 to take the first step.