Film focuses on parental alcohol addiction

Written by: Pete Henshaw | Published:
Image: Positive Images

A short film showing the impact that parental alcohol abuse has on young teenagers has been released by addiction charity Action on Addiction and film-making charity Positive Images.

Figures from Action on Addiction show that at least 1.3 million children are living with parents who misuse alcohol and drugs and that these children are seven times more likely to develop problems themselves.

The charity adds: "Many are growing up in chaotic environments, but others may be living in households where addiction issues may not be obvious. Some may be physically and emotionally neglected, if not at serious risk of harm."

The film shows two young people (pictured) dealing with their experience of having parents addicted to drugs and alcohol.

The use of masks in the film is intended to encourage viewers to "reflect their own emotions on the faces of the boy and girl". The aim is to encourage young people in similar situations to talk to someone who can help them.

Emma Spiegler of Action on Addiction's online service, COAP (Children of Addicted Parents), said: "Many young people whose parents are addicted to drugs, alcohol or both are carrying a real burden. They may feel ashamed, guilty and responsible, and many of them are reluctant to talk to anyone, even their friends, about it.

"Keeping such a secret can have real adverse effects on a young person's mental health. They may feel anxious and stressed, or may use drugs and alcohol themselves to try to deal with their experience. There is a real lack of media encouraging young people to seek support, so Action on Addiction was delighted to be approached by Positive Images to make this film."

To view the film, visit


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