Thousands of children and babies in England are currently living in households where drug or alcohol addiction, mental health illness or domestic violence is a prominent issue. Is your child at risk?
These children’s lives are put at risk on a daily basis. It may be from drink driving, drug driving, neglect, violence, erratic behaviour or domestic abuse. They are considered England’s hidden sufferers of addiction.
The children we are talking about are under the age of five. They do not have a voice and therefore have no choice. Their futures are often irreparably blighted by the toxic environments they are raised in. What is considered normal to them is unfathomable to those who have not suffered from a dysfunctional upbringing.
The Toxic Trio
The Children’s Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield, has reported that there are more than 160,000 children under the age of five that are currently residing in households suffering from at least two out of the three “toxic trio”. These are high risk factors where parents or carers suffer from alcohol or drug addiction, domestic violence or mental health illness.
The Commissioner’s report states that 100,000 of the at risk young children, living in high risk situations, where at least two of the three toxic trio are present, are currently unidentified by the local authorities. This means that these children are not receiving any professional help or support whatsoever to intervene in their intolerable living conditions.
The Commissioner’s report, aptly titled A Crying Shame, was released in October 2018.
Children Of Alcoholics And Drug Addicts
Children of alcoholics and addicts often grow up having acquired many unhealthy coping strategies themselves. Consequently, some go on to follow in their parents footsteps. This is because they have been shown no other way. Some go on to seek love in unhealthy toxic relationships. For example, many never truly understand their worth. Therefore they are at great risk of adopting the same self harming behaviours. Those they witnessed in their parents whilst they were at a young and impressionable age.
Alcoholism and drug addiction are often accompanied by mental health illnesses. This is referred to in the addiction treatment field as having co-occurring illnesses. These illnesses can either be the catalyst or the result of substance misuse.
In summary, where a child is raised in a household where one or both parents are addicts at the very least their emotional needs are rarely met. This is true whether it be alcohol or drug addictions. In more severe cases of addiction and mental health illness the children can assume the parental role. These children heartbreakingly live in a constant state of anxiety, fear and stress – yet this is their everyday normality.
Doing What Is Best By Your Children And You
As a premier drug and alcohol rehab facility, we treat many patients with young children. Some have lost care of their children to the local authorities or to other family members. Some are supported by a sober partner and some are single parents or victims of domestic violence.
We often hear potential clients saying that they cannot leave their children to come in for treatment. Likewise, they may be frightened the authorities will remove their children. This greatly saddens us; as the vast majority of our staff are in recovery we truly understand just how powerful addiction is. It is very rare for an individual to overcome addiction without professional help and intervention.
The reality is, if you are a parent that suffers from addiction and/or a mental health illness or domestic violence – your children will be affected, more so if you do not seek appropriate help. Therefore put your children first and let us help you.
Is your child at risk? Then Let Us Help.
So, if you think your child is at risk or you know a child at risk please seek help. The biggest gifts you can give to yourself and to your children and loved ones is your recovery, time and love. The professional counsellors and staff at our private Lighthouse Rehab Clinic can show you firstly how to build a loving relationship with yourself and then with those that mean the most to you.
In summary, drug and alcohol addiction are life threatening illnesses. Therefore, please don’t make the mistake of thinking you will be okay. Many die from addiction, leaving a trail of devastation in their wake. Don’t let that be you. Call us today for immediate addiction help and advice.
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