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Family dynamics - Essay Example

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Family Dynamics Name Institution Date Family Dynamics Alcoholism has always been a serious issue in American society. Every era since the revolution has had to deal with the excesses that are caused by drunkenness. In earlier generations, it was mainly the male population that had access to alcoholic drinks which were served in public houses which prohibited women…
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Family dynamics

It is obvious that alcoholism has to be tackled in ways that are unique to each addict. While basic theories may be used to treat the underlying causes of the disease, it is necessary to address the issues that are unique to every alcohol addict in order to stem the excess use of alcohol by that particular individual. Demographics of Families affected by Alcohol In America today, there are approximately 15 men and women who are addicted to alcohol and use it on a regular basis. These alcoholics come from diverse religions and ethnic backgrounds, and can be found in all age groups. According to Babor (2010) 43% of the American population has had to deal, at some time or other, with an alcoholic within the family. Today, 18% of all American children live with an alcoholic in the family (Centers for Disease Control, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 2009). Of this figure, more than 55% are children who are still perceived to be dependants who rely on their parents for sustenance. According to Babor (2010), the consumption of excess alcohol kills more than 75,000 Americans on an annual basis. These deaths may result from binge drinking or simply continuous heavy drinking which wears down the body’s vital organs such as the liver. ...
This is because there are pressures from peers that they have to deal with while also having to handle the pressure of starting new relationships as well as careers. The Effect on the Family The families of alcoholics are often greatly affected by their destructive addiction. They may have to live with the pressure of maintaining a facade of normalcy to the outside world while also having to bear the problems that the alcoholic causes. Alcoholics usually have short attention spans once they start to drink and can cause problems that they will not remember after the effect of the alcohol wear out (Joyce, 2011). The families of alcoholics may have to deal with violent behavior exhibited by the alcoholic, economic problems caused by the alcoholic’s use of family finances to support his or her problem, and low relationship satisfaction. Any children born into families where one of the parents is an alcoholic also learn quickly not to trust that parent (Joyce, 2011). Communication in such families is marked by constant criticism, blame, misplaced guilt, dissatisfaction in emotional relationships, and complaints (Babor, 2010). Chaos and conflict is common in families that have alcoholics. There is also a lot of unpredictability, and the breakdown of traditional family rituals. Physical as well as emotional abuse is also very common in such families. Theories of Alcohol Addiction There are different theories that seek to address the cause of alcoholism in people. The genetic theory holds that there are inherited mechanisms, particularly among people that had alcoholic parents, which predispose people to desiring alcohol or consuming it in excess (Hingson, Zha ... Read More
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