The Reciprocal Influence of Drug and Alcohol Abuse and Family Members' Communication

Authored by: Ashley P. Duggan , Beth A. Le Poire Molineux

The Routledge Handbook of Family Communication

Print publication date:  November  2012
Online publication date:  November  2012

Print ISBN: 9780415881982
eBook ISBN: 9780203848166
Adobe ISBN: 9781136946370


 Download Chapter



The family system can play a role in substance abuse treatment, as well as in family circumstances promoting continued alcohol and drug use (e.g., Haugland, 2003; Rangarajan & Kelly, 2006). About 9.4 percent of the total U.S. population of individuals age 12 and above were classified as substance dependent or substance abusive (SAMHSA, 2006). The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) estimates economic costs of substance abuse around $484 billion per year (NIDA, 2007). The consequences of substance abuse also involve family problems, including communication problems (Fals-Stewart & Birchler, 1998; Kelly, Halford, & Young, 2002), increased detachment (Carroll, Robinson, & Flowers, 2002), verbal aggressiveness (Straus & Sweet, 1992), and physical abuse (Testa, Quigley, & Leonard, 2003; Wekerle & Wall, 2002). Spouses of substance abusers are frequently affected in terms of both physical and mental health (e.g., Hurcom, Coppello, & Orford, 2000). Children of alcoholics are at greater risk for behavioral, psychological, cognitive, and neuropsychological deficits (Johnson & Leff, 1999). Parents of adolescent substance abusers may be perceived as more controlling and less loving (e.g., Pandina & Schuele, 1983), and family members may influence continued substance abuse (e.g., Copello, Velleman, & Templeton, 2005; Rotunda, West, & O'Farrell, 2004).

Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.