Children raised in homes of parental substance abuse face many unique challenges. Their lives are filled with instability and unknown circumstances that cause higher levels of stress. When a parent becomes a substance abuser, there is a significant effect on children within the home. With substance abuse comes a greater chance of neglect, psychological, physical, and sexual abuse. This article reviews the long-term effects to children raised in these traumatic conditions and how these children adjust into adulthood. Research shows that some children adjust into healthy adults, whereas others continue the same vicious cycle as their parents. Examining the different preventative services provided to children brings a better understanding as to why some children adjust better than others. There are few programs available to children intended to intervene during the critical time of a caregiver’s substance abuse. These such programs have revealed positive results on the ability for children to better cope with their emotions. Through further research it has shown that along with the affectionate/caring relationship of the caregiver to child, comes a healthier outcome for the children in the long-term. There is a need for longevity testing to prove the necessity of more programs available to children dealing with these difficult circumstances. Without these programs, the children are destined to repeat their parent’s mistakes.

Semester/Year of Award

Fall 12-15-2017


Christina Lovin

Mentor Professional Affiliation

English and Theatre

Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Document Type

Bachelor Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars

Degree Level




Department Name when Degree Awarded

Accounting, Finance, and Information Systems