One in five adults can identify with growing up with an alcoholic relative and Twenty-eight million Americans have one parent abusing or dependent on alcoholic (Walker, & Lee, 1998). There are devastating and ubiquitous effects of alcoholism, which vary from psychological, social, or biological problems for families. Counselor’s treating this problem all agree that the relationships within a family, especially between a parent and a child is one of the most influential within a system, but what are the effects on the family when a parent is an alcoholic? Contemporary research has found there is a higher prevalence of problems in the family when alcohol is the organizing principle. In addition, there is copious research on the roles of individuals within the family becoming defined into specific categories, and evidently, the roles may become reversed between the parent and the child. This topic of functional roles in alcoholic families will be analyzed and investigated further. Family therapy has had substantial results in the treatment of an alcoholic parent. These results will be discussed more along, with the literature examining the existing research related, to specific interventions and treatments in family therapy with an alcoholic parent. Before research on the treatment is illuminated on distinctive therapies, it is crucial for counselors facilitating family therapy to comprehend the literature on the presenting problems commonly, associated with alcoholic parents and the effects this population has on their families. Furthermore, the adverse outcomes an alcoholic parent has on their children and spouses has been researched and reviewed.
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