Parents profoundly impact their children’s behavior, attitudes, and values. Children often model their behavior after what they see their parents doing.
When parents tell their children not to engage in certain behaviors, like drinking alcohol, but then engage in those behaviors themselves, it sends mixed messages. Children may become confused about what is acceptable or appropriate.
Do as I say, not as I do
This common parenting message that can be problematic because it suggests that children should not follow the potentially harmful behaviors they witness in their parents. However, children learn more from what they observe than what they are told.
It’s crucial for parents to make an honest appraisal of their own drinking and relationship to alcohol or other addictive substances. Seeking outside counsel can be a very effective way of assessing what may need to be addressed. Addiction can profoundly impact the family, and seeking recovery support and treatment is a vital step toward recovery.
Alcohol counseling and addiction recovery support can assist individuals and families dealing with substance abuse. These services can help address the problem, find coping strategies, and heal family dynamics.
It’s always better to prevent substance abuse issues from arising in the first place. Parents can lead by example, seek help when needed, and create an environment where their children feel comfortable discussing their concerns and questions.