© The Stauros Foundation (known as Stauros) is a Scottish Charity, SC014253
The Problem with Alcohol

Family History and Harmful Drinking

Some research has suggested that people are led into problem drinking by events that occur in certain combinations and sequences (Bennett, L.A. and Wolin, S.J. (1990), Family culture and alcohol transmission, in R.L. Collins, K.E. Leonard and J.S. Searles (eds), Alcohol and the family, pp 194 – 219, London, The Guilford Press). When family life is disrupted by alcohol inebriation in one member, family life changes. Family rituals, such as meal times, Christmas time and holidays, should help communication within the family. These simple events provide times when healthy belief systems can be established, positive language can be used between family members, personal thoughts can be expressed in a positive and accepting atmosphere and for the nurture of meaningful relationships. However, the presence of a person with an alcohol addiction within this context means these rituals change. Meals deteriorate because of negative experiences; Christmastime and family holidays may become haphazard and disorganized. When healthy rituals are lost, there is a greater incidence of intergenerational continuity of an alcohol problem. For a person growing up in a family influenced by harmful drinking, his or her drinking expectations often relate to either problem solving or celebration. This means that alcohol becomes associated with both the bad times and the good times. When things are bad alcohol is taken to ease the difficulties: when things are good alcohol is taken to enhance the experience.
Prayer Pointers
Pray for family life among Stauros people, that there will be harmony and happiness in the normal routines of life. Pray for family members who feel afraid and tense when a loved one is drunk. Pray for there to be a renewal of family values throughout the nation.
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