Having a teen with a substance abuse problem may be one of the most difficult things that any parents could face while raising a child. They might ask themselves, where did we go wrong? Could we have done anything in our power to prevent our son or daughter from feeling lost and going to the dark side of addiction? As parents, we try to protect our children and teach them right from wrong. Unfortunately, when our children enter school, peer pressure and bullying can affect their decision making abilities and cloud their judgment…
especially during their adolescent/teenage years. A parent may experience stages of grief and loss as they watch their adolescent child struggling with addiction. Loss because everything a parent may have envisioned for their child is now gone. Grief because a parent has to go through a process of losing their child to drugs and/or alcohol. Ultimately, parents can come to the acceptance that their child has made a choice to use drugs or alcohol, and that even as parents they have no control over their child’s choice.
What can a parent do to help their adolescent child?
- Set boundaries and enforce consequences
- Stop enabling
- Accept the things that cannot be changed
- Find resources
- Manage your stress
- Consider seeking therapy or join a support group
If you have an adolescent child who is struggling with drugs or alcohol addiction and feel you have no one who understands your struggles as a parent, please contact Life Enhancement Counseling Services today at 407-443-8862 to schedule an appointment with one of our Orlando mental health counselors.