Alcoholism is as harmful to the family’s well‑being as any drug addiction

Although opioid and other drug addictions receive more attention than alcohol addiction, all have serious consequences on the family. Addiction professionals familiar with the effects that alcoholism and addiction have on families share why alcoholism is just as detrimental to families as other addictions and how children are specifically affected.

Al‑Anon Family Groups, which includes Alateen for teenagers, provide support to anyone affected by someone else’s problem drinking. *Ninety‑three percent of members report that their lives have been very positively affected by Al‑Anon Family Groups and forty‑two percent that receive professional services and attend Al‑Anon feel that since coming to Al‑Anon, they have seen an improvement in their treatment, counseling, or therapy.

*2018 Al‑Anon Family Group Membership Survey.

This professional panel interview was recorded at the Al‑Anon International Convention 2018 in Baltimore, Maryland. The professionals interviewed were:

Nancy Duff‑Boehm, PH.D., Clinical Psychologist, Cleveland, Ohio, USA

Mintie Grienke, M.ED., Counselor/Psychotherapist, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Ann McGreevy, MA, Supervisor of Psychological Studies at FCPS, Frederick, Maryland, USA

Hugh A. King Jr., MD, Psychiatrist, Mandeville, Louisiana, USA


Al‑Anon cooperates with therapists, counselors, and other professionals, but does not endorse, oppose, or affiliate with any professional, organization, or entity. The opinions expressed here were strictly those of the person who gave them. Their comments reflect their professional expertise and use of Al‑Anon as a resource for their clients and patients who are or have been affected by an individual’s addiction to alcohol.