Children, Addiction and Marital Problems

Motivation and Reward
October 4, 2013
The Little Things Make Life Sweet
October 18, 2013

Children are often the casualties of war – a war that is fought in their own living rooms, kitchens, bedrooms and, even, backyards.  Children are scarred and wounded by the wars that go on between their parents who are often unsuccessfully attempting to figure out their marriage.  It shouldn’t have to be this way.  There are ways to work through marital issues without hurting the children.

Here are a few tips from “Putting Kids First” by Michael Oddenino:

  • Keep the issues between the parents that have to do with the marriage and separate out those issues dealing with the children.
  • Plan for the long term.  Don’t expect quick remedies to problems.
  • Use available resources…support groups, clergy, therapists, mentors.
  • Manage the anger, blame and guilt that often accompany marital issues.
  • Speak kindly.  Don’t argue in front of the children.
  • Honor your spouse as the “other parent” of your child.  Remember your child draws self-image from both parents.

Please work very hard not to break family bonds because you as the parents are struggling with marital issues.  It bears repeating that children need family ties and stability in their lives.  Marital issues, whether created by addiction or not, can often shatter those ties.  Adults (parents) have a responsibility to make sure that the children feel safe and secure regardless of what is happening in the marriage.

Grow up parents and start to think about the children – regardless of their ages.  It is time to stop the madness of the marriage taking center stage and recognize the burden marital stress places on the children.  It is neither their fault nor their responsibility.

“In each family a story is playing itself out, and each family’s story embodies its hope and despair.” – Auguste Napier

Omega J. Galliano
Owner/Therapist - MFT, LADC, LP - Meg obtained a Master of Science degree in Clinical Psychology and since college has been busy working in the behavioral health field. As a Nevada licensed marriage and family therapist, Nevada licensed alcohol and drug counselor, Minnesota licensed psychologist, and a Distance Credentialed Counselor, she has held various management positions in national corporations.