No matter the case, how alcoholic parents affect their children of alcoholics are faced with more challenges than the average child. Some studies have shown that children of parents with alcohol use disorder are more likely to use alcohol themselves, in adolescence or adulthood. They may begin drinking alcohol at a younger age than other people, and to progress quickly to a problematic level of consumption. In families in which both parents have an AUD, teens may be at higher risk.

effects of alcoholism

Low self esteem leads to or can lead to real mental health problems such as depression or anxiety. These children are much more likely to have substance abuse problems early in life. Some of the reasoning behind that is the genetics of mental health disorders, such as alcoholism, but some of it is because children with anxiety and depression can turn to drugs and alcohol to cope . Depression, anxiety, personality disorders, and other mental health disorders are common in adult children of alcoholics, who are at increased risk for behavioral health issues. This may be tied to the fact that mental health disorders have a genetic component and people who have them may abuse alcohol and drugs to cope with the symptoms.

The Effects Of Growing Up With Alcoholic Parents

You may constantly seek approval in relationships and have difficulty having fun. You don’t think you deserve to be happy, have a healthy relationship, or take good care of yourself. These are effects that adversely compromise adult relationships as well as your sense of self. Mental health issues can be a symptom of adverse childhood experiences. Research suggests childhood trauma could double your risk of mental illness later in life. Your own addiction can increase your risk for mental health symptoms.


It’s not uncommon for individuals affected by parental alcoholism to seek support and guidance in navigating these challenging circumstances. Sites like offer resources and information to assist those looking for rehabilitation centers or support groups. Recognizing the impact of parental alcoholism on academic performance underscores the importance of holistic support systems and recovery options available through platforms like Understanding these connections can be pivotal in helping individuals affected by such situations find the help they need to address both immediate challenges and long-term effects.

How Growing Up With An Alcoholic Parent Can Effect Children Into Adulthood

Moreover, they showed progressively decreasing levels of aggressive at the age of 36–48 months . At the age of 2 years children of alcoholics showed more externalizing behaviors and poorer self-regulation as compared to children of non-alcoholics. The ability to self-regulate, that is, inhibitory control is usually developed by the age of 2 years in children. Children of alcoholics show a failure to develop this ability as compared to healthy children.