Many of us observe child abuse and neglect every day, but we’re not sure what to do or how to help. Whether the abuse is neglect, a harsh blow, nasty comment, stony silence, or not knowing if there will be dinner that evening, the end result is a child that feels unsafe, uncared for, and alone. The reality is: Abusive behavior comes in many forms, and is much more common when there is substance abuse in the home.
Substance Abuse Is Directly Linked to Child Abuse and Neglect
Studies have shown that between one-third and two-thirds of child maltreatment cases involve substance abuse according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Parents or caretakers who abuse substances are less likely to be able to function effectively in a parental role due to:
- Impairments (both physical and mental) that occur while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
- Expenditure of often limited household resources on purchasing alcohol or other drugs.
- Time spent seeking out drugs.
- Time spent using alcohol or other drugs.
The basic needs of children such as nutrition, supervision and nurturing, often go unmet due to substance abuse.
Help end substance abuse and prevent child abuse. You can protect the most vulnerable among us by helping someone you love transform their life and start keeping their promise – one day at a time.