Date of Award

5-1-2009

Degree Type

Thesis

University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)

School

School of Social Work

Degree Name

M.S.W.

Department

Social Work and Public Health

First Advisor

Dr. Robert W. Waymer

Second Advisor

Hattie M. Mitchell, MSW

Abstract

This current study describes alcoholism, drug abuse, and mental illness as risk factors among adults whose parents were substance abusers. The intention of this study is to depict a relationship between Parental Substance Abuse and the onset of alcoholism, drug abuse, and mental illness amongst the children of substance abusers as they develop into adulthood. The study suggests having a substance abusive parent increases the risk of the child to develop substance dependencies as well as mental illness in their adulthood. Through parental modeling children witness substance abuse and dependency. As a result, the behavior becomes innate. The results depict a significant statistical relationship at the .05 level of probability between parental substance abuse influencers and substance dependencies as well as mental illness amongst the persons that have been exposed to parental substance abuse influencers during their childhood. Alcoholism, drug abuse, and mental illness are risk factors among adults whose parents were substance abusers. This study also proposes new incentives to minimize this nationwide dilemma.