Drinking after Children Leave for College

Drinking after Children Leave for CollegeIt can be both wonderful and heartbreaking for a parent to watch a child grow more independent, especially when the child heads off to college. A secret drinking problem may come into the picture as parents realize their lives now need a new direction and purpose. For empty nest parents this new stage in life can be altogether overwhelming, depressing, and confusing, but also totally understandable and treatable.

How Alcoholism Develops

Your secret drinking problem may have started relatively slowly; one glass of wine here, a few drinks there. However, it does not take much time before empty nest alcoholism sets in. The root causes to your sadness and isolation during what should be a happy time in your life may include the following:

  • Unresolved past issues of abuse or abandonment
  • Untreated depression and anxiety that you were able to suppress with the chaos of a life busy with children
  • Undiagnosed mental illness including bipolar disorder which can remain undiagnosed for many years

Many people wrap up their senses of purpose and direction in their ability to be good parents. This leads to a sense of almost despondency when their children, having benefitted from good parenting, leave home as confident and independent adults.

Getting Addiction Help

Having been the source of strength for your family for so many years it might feel like you should be able to handle your alcoholism on your own. However, the reality is that your secret drinking problem will quickly spiral into an out of control addiction that consumes even the good parts of your life. Addiction help will include the following:

  • Rehab for alcoholic parents will include an integrated treatment plan that treats both the addiction and the other issues.
  • Going through an alcohol detox program is the best method of getting your sobriety started off on the right foot. Your detox process will be carefully monitored by a medical team in order to ensure your safety and comfort.
  • As a part of your treatment you will be offered support through individual and group therapy. There is no reason to feel as though you are alone with what you are experiencing.

Keep in mind that there is no age limit on addiction. Parents of adults who have long since left home can also find that they have a secret drinking problem. Rehab for older adults will include coming to terms with their addiction and its root causes. Life does not have to be dominated by an addiction, depression, anxiety, or by a sense of isolation.

Parent Alcoholism Help

When you call our 24 hour, toll-free helpline, you will have the opportunity to discuss your alcoholism and the other areas of your life that you require help with. Our compassionate counselors have extensive experience working with alcoholism and with empty nest parents.

We are here to offer empty nest parents the means to gain back control of their life and their sense of purpose. Give us a call, today.