Children of Parents With Substance Use Disorder

Substance use disorders (SUDs) affect nearly one in five adults in the United States as well as their families and communities. Researchers, clinicians, and organizations such as the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and the National Association for Children of Alcoholics have identified numerous negative effects of SUDs on families and individual members, including children. The founders of Alcoholics Anonymous acknowledged that families were greatly harmed by alcoholism. Two of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (and other twelve-step programs) are to identify and “make amends” to loved ones harmed by one’s addiction. Al-Anon and Nar-Anon were developed to help adult family members and Alateen for adolescents, thereby underscoring SUD as a family disease. This entry first reviews the effects of SUD on ...

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