5 Tips for Parents of Alcoholic Young Adults

For those who have children, it comes as no surprise that you would do absolutely anything for them. If you find yourself as a parent of an alcoholic adult, you may be wondering how you can help your child.

Any addiction can be crippling to watch a loved one go through, especially one involving alcohol. With the right resources and help, parents of alcoholic young adults can support and find hope in their child’s recovery and overcome the family challenges.

Recognizing Signs of Alcohol Abuse

As a parent of an alcoholic adult, you may be struggling to know what signs to look for that would indicate an addiction problem. Here are some indications of alcohol abuse or addiction:

1. Physical changes

As the abuse of alcohol continues, the physical appearance of your child may begin to change. Changes in appetite, weight gain or loss, and yellowing of the eyes are indications that there may be a problem.

2. Changes in behavior

Young adults may seem like the demographic to exhibit irresponsible behaviors, and while that may be true to some extent, as parents of a young adult alcoholic, some behaviors can signify red flags. If your child is abusing alcohol you may notice:

  • Lack of attendance at school or work
  • Money problems
  • Lack of interest in hobbies or activities

Alcohol can also make an individual irritated, abrupt, or distant. When you recognize any of these signs in your young adult child, they may be abusing alcohol and require intervention from a professional treatment center. If you want to read more about the signs of alcohol abuse, click to read this article: Four Signs of Alcohol Abuse.

Effects on Adult Children of Alcoholic Parents

Although they may or may not be an alcoholic themselves, adult children of alcoholic parents are deeply affected by their parent’s addiction. Here are several signs to recognize:

  • Impulsivity
  • Overreacting to changes they have no control over
  • Lying when it is easier to tell the truth
  • Difficulty seeing projects through to completion

In addition, these children are also more likely to marry or become an alcoholic themselves, or even take on the characteristics of an alcoholic without actually drinking.

Helping Your Child

Whether your child is receiving treatment for their addiction to alcohol or not, it is essential to know what ways you may be able to support your child. As you look at ways you can show you care for your child through their addiction, consider these two practices.

First, don’t enable. As a parent, your job is to support the child without allowing the addiction. Enabling means you are not providing the resources or encouragement for continuing the behavior. Making excuses for the addiction isn’t something you need to be held accountable for. Giving help to your child in the form of support and money will only be effective when your child seeks professional treatment.

Second, provide support to an extent. As a parent, there is only so much support you can contribute without enabling the behavior. Providing financial support should be done if you can and if your young adult is committed to treatment.

If your child is looking for treatment options, finding resources through your community can be a significant first step. Whether it is a treatment facility or finding a local support group, there are resources that you and your child can pursue that will work for who they are as an individual.

Helping Yourself: The Parents of Alcoholic Adults

The knowledge of your child’s alcohol addiction can be an onerous burden to bear. As a parent of a young adult who is addicted to alcohol, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Remind your child and yourself that the choice to drink was theirs, not yours
  • Love your child; don’t enable
  • You can’t rescue your child; only they can desire to change
  • Protect yourself and other members of your family

Above all, love yourself. As a parent, it may feel natural to blame yourself for the choices your child has made. Your child is now considered an adult, and the choices they make are not a result of who you are as a parent. Loving yourself is vital, and accepting things you can’t change will go a long way in the recovery your child is seeking. Here are some quotes to help your child overcome addiction and get inspired.

Treatment for Alcohol Addiction

As your child works through their addiction, it’s important to know what options are available to them. Parents of a young adult alcoholic have the opportunity to support and be engaged through their child’s recovery.

Whether you are seeking medication or treatment facilities, finding sobriety is possible. At Steps Recovery Centers, we provide countless resources and holistic treatment options for your child and family. To know more information on how you can help your child, contact us today.