Last week, I asked you and your partner to discuss your experiences with conflict. Unfortunately, a common source of family conflict is substance abuse and mental illness. The presence of these difficulties in our childhood homes can have a significant effect on our adult relationships.

Substance Abuse and Mental Illness

Many families struggle with the complicating factors of mental illness or substance abuse, and these will usually have dramatic effects on family life and relationships. Besides the impact of the disease itself and how each family member is affected by the problem, there are family dynamics around admitting and addressing the issues versus avoiding and pretending that they don’t exist. Consider the following questions:

  • Were there substance abuse issues in your family?
  • If so, who struggled? How were they handled?
  • How did the household adapt to the use?
  • What about mental illness? Were any of your family members anxious or depressed?
  • Did someone struggle with a more significant disorder?
  • How did these struggles play out in your house as you grew up?
  • What was your role around each of those topics? How did it change the way your family members related?
  • Was your family open and honest about any challenges? Did they pretend in public? Did they pretend at home?
  • What did you learn? Are there issues with substance use or mental health that are relevant to your life now?

We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By agreeing you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.

Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Accept all Services
The owner of this website has made a commitment to accessibility and inclusion, please report any problems that you encounter using the contact form on this website. This site uses the WP ADA Compliance Check plugin to enhance accessibility.