Adult Addiction and Reactive Attachment Disorder in Children

Adult Addiction and Reactive Attachment Disorder in ChildrenChildren with reactive attachment disorder do not form bonds or attachments with their parent or caregivers. This usually manifests when the parent does not meet the needs of the children. This means that the children faced with this situation are not nurtured and comforted, nor do they have their basic needs met. This can stunt growth in the brain and can be a lifelong disorder that will become more severe as the child grows. This also damages future relationships for the affected child.

Children and Addiction

When an adult abuses substances to such an extent that he or she is an addict, the addiction takes center stage in his or her life. The desire to use can overpower everything else; most tragically, this includes caring for a child in the proper manner. Children who are not given the nurturing that they need will be unable to form relationships without intensive counseling.

Children and Treatment

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are many treatment programs that can help children and parents overcome aspects of the disorder. Parental skills classes can be provided to help parents catch up in areas where they lack the skills they need. Family therapy and intensive one-on-one counseling for the child may yield results. It is also important for the child to engage in close, comforting physical contact with a trusted adult. Some experts also recommend developing a close relationship between therapist and child. This gives the child a fresh relationship with a trusted adult that may help repair some of the damage done by neglect.

There is no perfect solution for the issue. Reactive attachment disorder is a direct reaction to neglect, and the only way to undo some of the damage is to try some combination of the treatments listed. There is also no direct cure for addiction, but there are treatment options available to help individuals live a happy and full life.

Addiction Help

The parent in question should seek treatment for his or her addiction and prepare for the work needed to repair the child’s psyche. Please call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline to speak with an admissions coordinator who can help connect you with the treatment options that may best help you and your child.