Addiction Forum Question

Forum Question
HopetrackerA3 A Mom From FL

Will my other children become resentful?

I love all three of my kids equally, but as a single mom, I feel like I’m starting to spread myself too thin. Since discovering that my eldest has been struggling with a drug addiction I’ve felt like I've had to drop everything and give all of my attention to him. I can see that it’s affecting my youngest; his grades have been dropping significantly, and he’s been acting up at school. I’m worried that my youngest will start to resent his older brother for all of the attention he’s receiving. But at the same time, I’m scared I’m going to lose my eldest if I don’t keep an eye on him. I need help.
Mom83 I have 2 children with 5 years between them. My 23 years old son has been using drugs and being extremely difficult since his mid-teens. That means that my 18 year old daughter has spent most of her memorable life in the shadows of her brother’s addiction. As cognizant as I’ve tried to be, she has been robbed of parental attention; we’ve been putting out fires while she’s been doing a great job on her own. She is bitter and has no interest in her brother. She expresses little empathy toward my pain. I hate that she is a different person that’s she would’ve been had she not grown up in these circumstances.
Kelly M When my daughter began using, I became obsessed trying to figure out why she was acting so differently, and I know I neglected my youngest too.. He stopped showing interest in school and I met with the counselor to figure out what was going on. I tried to make time to help with homework and give him more attention, but it wasn't until I realized my daughter had an addiction, that I was able to explain to him, with the help of a family counselor, what was really going on. It really helped to turn things around in our relationship
Olivia K It is common for other children in the home to feel resentful as addiction takes the whole family hostage. They may feel as though they are competing with the disease, as anyone who is sick or in crisis becomes the primary focus. It is important to be honest about the situation (varying degrees based on child's age) and involve them in the healing process. They may have questions and need to be reassured and validated for any feeling they are having. Most important in this process is getting support for yourself so that you may stay present and consistent in their lives.