The Overlap Between Relationship Violence and Substance Abuse

It is very obvious, and should be to most people, that drug abuse is directly related to child and woman abuse. To what extent doesn’t really matter. What matters is that it exists and has existed for years and that there needs to be a direct and effective approach in dealing with it. One of the most important and interesting bits of information from this article and in a large number of cases is the direct relation to physical abuse and illegal substance abuse. What is surprising is that this country focuses on other illicit drugs such as; cocaine, heroin, and marijuana as if these drugs are more of a threat to society when alcohol is obviously a greater threat.

Alcohol abuse should be taken very seriously, yet there are no “stop drinking” campaigns. Alcohol is often encouraged through advertisements and many cultural settings. The article stated that parental substance abuse alone is not considered child abuse, and is not in itself a cause for any sort of intervention. This is a problem to me, if statistics show that there is a high correlation between parental substance abuse and child abuse then child protection services or other agencies need to become a little more proactive when they encounter parents who abuse substances. Parental substance abuse creates a dysfunctional and volatile family situation and child abuse could possibly occur at any moment.

Parental substance abuse should also be considered emotional abuse and child neglect. Emotional abuse because the child is suffering mentally and emotionally from witnessing a parent using drugs. Child neglect occurs because the parent abusing illicit substances and suffering from an addiction is obviously neglecting the child. The child is emotionally, physical, and financially being neglected because the parent’s main concern is their addiction, not the child. Many children will grow up having been exposed to parental abuse and continue the pattern (generational abuse), and then society wants to lock them up and throw away the keys when they commit a crime.

Prevention and intervention was avoided just because it didn’t meet a certain agency’s criteria. Another important point that indicates neglect is that many substance abuse parents leave children alone or in the hands of those who may abuse the child. The article discussed another important topic that is pretty obvious, the correlation between substance abuse and domestic violence. The statistic of 20-93% of battered women consider their partners to be alcoholics or problem drinkers is a wide and confusing range. I agree that spousal or partner abuse is based on individual reaction to alcohol because the abuser could be naturally aggressive without any help from alcohol. Another point made in the article, was focusing on the victim’s intoxication. Perhaps, the dysfunction of the family includes victim precipitation and substance abuse.

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