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Living With Addicted Parents – Coping Resources

If you have a parent who is struggling with addiction, it can be hard to know where to turn. Dealing with addiction is scary. Who can you talk to? Who can help? Where can you find guidance?

Addiction Affects the Whole Family

It may seem like your mother or father is going through this horrible time alone, but in reality, you are going through it with them. You are probably feeling certain emotions that are unfamiliar. You may feel stressed and lonely, thinking that nobody can help. You may have strong feelings of anger towards your addicted parent. How could they do this? How can someone you trust so much let you down so badly?

These are all normal feelings. Addiction affects the whole family, whether people realize it or not.

You are not at Fault

The most important thing to remember when dealing with an addict parent is that it is not your fault. They did not turn to drugs or alcohol because of anything you did or said. They did not develop a gambling addiction because you are a disappointment.

Addictive behavoiours come from within and you are not the cause of your parent’s substance abuse.

Where to Turn to Get Help

By finding our Help Centre, you are already on the right path. This website was designed to help the children of addicts find solace and learn that they are not alone. There are others like you who are also dealing with parents who suffer from dependence issues and are also looking to find help.

Whether your parent is continuously struggling with addiction or is currently in treatment, there are people out there who understand exactly what you are going through.

There are a variety of people already in your life that you can talk to about your parent’s addiction:

  • Family member you trust
    Everyone has a cousin, aunt, uncle or grandparent that is will to help. You can confide in this person and they can offer a gentle ear and a shoulder to cry on, or can help you get in touch with the necessary people to help you cope.
  • Teacher or guidance counsellor
    Teachers offer a great resource when it comes to addiction because they have willingly taken the responsibility to help people like yourself. No matter if you’re looking for support or guidance, they will be able to help you.
  • Doctor
    Your general practitioner (family doctor) is someone you can talk to about your parent’s addiction. They can also recommend a psychologist or psychiatrist to give you counselling as you go through this trying time in your life.
  • The Internet
    This may seem broad, but going online and finding an organization like Addiction Canada can be a great tool. You’ll be able to find message boards, chatrooms, and other services where other children of addicts share stories, trade ideas and most of all show you that you are not alone.

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