Whether you realize it or not, alcoholism impacts more than just the person who is addicted to alcohol. As the misuse and the use continues, alcoholism quickly begins to impact several areas of one’s life including the lives of family and friends.  While addiction is not your fault, it’s critical that families learn how to advocate for their own needs while also creating clear boundaries.

Below are five potential impacts alcoholism has on families across the country:

Financial Burdens

The cost of excessive alcohol use in the United States reached $249 billion in 2010, or about $2.05 per drink. Most (77%) of these costs were due to binge drinking. Binge drinking is defined as drinking four or more alcoholic beverages per occasion for women or five or more drinks per occasion for men. Further, 2 of every 5 dollars were paid by federal, state, and local governments, demonstrating that we are all paying for excessive alcohol use. While this is the financial burden to taxpayers, there is an additional financial burden to families. Alcohol abuse can lead to an increase in debt for families, especially credit card debt, in numerous ways.

Damaged Family Relationships

Damaged family relationships are another direct impact of alcoholism. The lies and deceit often associated with alcoholism tends to break emotional and personal family bonds. An NIH study noted that alcoholism not only leads to negative interactions among family members, but it erodes trust and makes it difficult for other family members to build strong relationships with the individual.

Developmental Issues in Neglected Children

Children of parents who struggle with alcoholism are at higher risk for emotional problems. It has been estimated that 6.6 million children live in households where alcoholism is present, which is a significant concern. Because of this, many parents who struggle with alcoholism tend to be neglectful of both the physical and emotional needs of their children.

Domestic Abuse

One of the most sobering effects of alcoholism is an increased risk for domestic abuse within the family. This abuse can begin as verbal but as time goes by, this abuse can turn into physical in nature. Physical violence is also a serious issue. The World Health Organization reports that 55 percent of physical assault cases between intimate partners occurred when the perpetrator had been drinking.

Physical And Mental Health Issues
Lastly, alcoholism impacts both your physical and mental health. When someone is in a drunken state it is difficult for family members to discern how they truly feel. This rollercoaster ride can leave family members in both physical and mental distress. It is important to know that help is available for those who may need to seek emotional support during these challenging times. 

If you or someone you love is dealing with alcoholism, TROSA is available to help. TROSA is a comprehensive, licensed long-term, nonprofit residential recovery program for men & women with substance use disorders. Contact us today to learn more.