Should I tell my teenagers about husband's addiction?

by Anne
(Ireland)

My husband now has a serious cocaine addiction that makes him absent from family life but functioning. My children think he is stressed and in ill health. He has totally been absent during a rare times in our marriage that I needed support, he does cocaine in his garage, alone, all evening and into the night.

The kids already believe he is capable of suicide or death through ill health.

Should I tell them the truth so they can understand or do I protect them from the truth while they watch and are confused?

Comments for Should I tell my teenagers about husband's addiction?

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Go to Al-anon and work this through with a sponsor.
by: Debbie Wicker

Dear Anne,

You're in a very difficult circumstance, and how to help your children through it is a difficult choice. Please consider joining Al-anon, which is an organization that helps families struggling with addiction. They have many, many resources for helping children of addicts and should be able to help you to decide the best course of action for your family.

Go to Al-anon a few times a week, work the 12 steps and find a female sponsor with children and work together to decide what is the best for all involved in this awful situation.

Good luck,

Debbie

The Truth
by: Thomas

Depending on your children age, I'd tell them the truth, if they are old enough to understand. Teach your children the consequences of the choice of using, before they decide to use. Knowing why their father is in such pain and agony could be a great deterrent from using substances for them. Had I adhered to those before me that were showing me the possible consequences of a life surrounded by drugs I might had not made that choice.

Oh no They know?
by: Kimberly

I just got back from treatment on April 11th. I have been clean for 44 days. When I was 12 days in to treatment, my 15 year old, 13 year old and 12 year old were all on speaker phone while I called from Las Vegas.

My daughter, the 12 year old said "Mom, do you feel better not taking so much medicine? I was almost floored. I really thought that they didn't "know" what was going on. I felt scared but then relieved! Why? I guess I really hate and do not want secrets in the house. I felt like this would have been, if someone hadn't told them, where I really was.

It was the best thing that happened! Good luck dear!

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