Alcoholism and Its Effect on the Family

Alcoholism and Its Effect on the Family Tetyana Parsons December 14, 2003 According to the Random House Dictionary of the English Language (1966), alcoholism is defined as “ a diseased condition due to the excessive use of alcoholic beverages” (p.35) Silverstein in his book “Alcoholism” (1990) gives three criteria that the American Psychiatric Association listed for physicians to diagnose this disease (p.30) : 1. physiological problems, such as hand tremors and blackouts 2. psychological problems, such as an obsessive desire to drink 3. behavioral problems that disrupt social or work life Alcoholics can be of any age, background, income level, social, or ethnic group. Very often alcoholism affects highly educated people. Several studies even showed that people who lack motivation are less likely to become addicted to alcohol than highly motivated individuals (Silverstein, 1990). Alcoholism is also known as a family disease. Alcoholics may have young, teenage, or grown-up children; they have wives or husbands; they have brothers or sisters; they have parents or other relatives. An alcoholic can totally disrupt family life and cause harmful effects that can last a lifetime. According to U. S. Department of Health and Human Services and SAMHSA’s (Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration) National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information, seventy six million American adults have been exposed to alcoholism in the family. Alcoholism is responsible for more family problems than any other single cause. According to Silverstein (1990), one of every four families has problems with alcohol. Each member of the family may be affected by … Continue reading Alcoholism and Its Effect on the Family