Worried about your parent or guardian?
We know that it can be a worrying time if your parent or guardian is using drugs and alcohol problematically but we are here to support you and your family. We can help to reduce the effect of a parents alcohol and drug use on your and your family’s life. Below are some frequently asked questions which you might find useful.
Download this Emergency Factsheet to find out what to do if someone has overdosed, appears to be unconscious or has had a bad reaction to any drug.
If someone is in immediate danger dial 999.
Can my parent stop using drugs or alcohol?
It is possible for a parent to stop misusing drugs or alcohol and there are services that can help them to do that. People who misuse drugs or alcohol need to work really hard at making big changes in their alcohol or drug use as it can be a difficult thing to do.
Is it my fault that my parent is drinking too much or taking drugs?
No, it is not your fault. Young people often worry that a parent’s drinking or drug use is their fault but it is not. Parents are responsible for their own actions.
What can I do to stop my parent from drinking or using drugs?
It is up to your parent to seek help and stop drinking or using drugs. Your job is to be a child, to grow, learn, play, make friends and make healthy choices for yourself.
If I talk to someone about my parent’s alcohol or drug use, will I get my parents in trouble?
We know that you may be worried you will get your parents into trouble so you keep their parent’s alcohol or drug use a secret. If you are in this situation t is normal to feel worried, frightened, angry or sad and you might not have anybody to talk to. It is important for you to talk to an adult you trust so you can get support. Insight is here to help you and there are also services that can help your parents too. Services are here to help, not to get parents into trouble.
If my family or I go to a service for help, will what we say be private and confidential?
Usually everything that is talked about is kept private and confidential between the staff of the service and your family. The only time they would need to tell someone else is if you or someone else is not safe so that Children’s Services can work with your parents to make things safer for you or the other person. Wherever possible, they would let you know before they spoke to anyone else.