Children of Alcoholics

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Title & Description Age Range
Adult Children of Alcoholics: Emotional Healing

The types of behaviors exhibited by COA's are portrayed. This program identifies many issues that ACOA's must confront and explores the variety of emotional injuries they have experienced.
Adult                44 min.           1990           V-4004

Children of Alcoholics: How Schools Can Help

One in five American students is the child of an alcoholic (COA) or substance abuser (COSA). These children are at 2-4 times greater risk of developing alcoholism or other drug abuse. Educators are often the only adults they can turn to for help, but their code of silence keeps them isolated. This program examines the needs of COAs and COSAs in grades 4-8, and presents strategies for helping them in the crucial pre-High School years. It features Ellen Morehouse, noted expert on school-based programs for COAs, and Veronica Skerker, substance abuse prevention training specialist from the Connecticut Department of Education. This video program is presented in three segments: 1. What Educators Need to Know About COAs (18 min) 2. COAs' Roles and Rules (20 min) 3. What Educators Can Do To Help COAs (18 min).
Adult                    56 min.           1992             V-4031

Children of Denial: Growing up with Addiction

Addiction is the number one cause of dysfunction and disharmony in families today. Alcohol addiction is the most pervasive, but other drug abuse is rampant, from prescription pills to methamphetamines, cocaine and heroin. Gambling, sexually compulsive behaviors, eating disorders or a combination of addictive disorders impacts 1 out of 4 families. While the substance or behavior varies, the family system operates with many of the same dysfunctional family rules - rules that fuel an ongoing legacy of addiction.The strongest legacy of addiction for people who grow up in an addictive family system is to repeat the addictive behavior or another addictive process or enter into personal relationships with someone who is addicted. Many experience problems related to isolation, a greater sense of loneliness, feeling very separate from other people. Many have difficulty expressing feelings or even identifying feelings. They often feel a sense of depression that comes more frequently, lasts longer. They have problems in relationships because they've learned to not trust others. Many times they feel victimized and experience a great sense of powerlessness over what is happening in their life. The key to disrupting this legacy starts with breaking through the dysfunctional family rules. When growing up in a troubled family people learn how to not talk openly. They learn to minimize, discount and rationalize. As one of Claudia Black's nine year old clients said, "In our family we just pretend things are different than how they really are." While many people have much to be afraid, sad, angry, or embarrassed about, children often find their family setting is not a safe place in which to be emotionally honest. Through the use of poignant stories and children's drawings, Claudia explores how the three dysfunctional rules - Don't Talk - Don't Feel - Don't Trust act as defenses and explores how these rules become significant challenges for the child to speak honestly, develop a healthy, emotional intelligence and learn to trust themselves and others. This presentation is a must for every treatment service as it provides information and validation for children and adults who have been impacted by addiction in the family. Because of the emotional effects on the viewer, Children of Denial has proven to be immensely effective in breaking the denial of the addicted person. This video is effectively utilized with individuals, families and groups. While it speaks to people impacted by any addictive substance or process, from alcohol and other drug addictions to gambling, food and sexual compulsions, the dysfunctional family rules can also be generalized to include other troubled families.

Adult            30 min.           2002           DVD-4034


Counseling Children of Alcoholics: Fostering Resiliency

Children of alcoholics are at increased risk of developing alcoholism or other drug abuse. But research shows the vast majority of these children have "resiliency" - they can bounce back and develop into healthy adults. The program examines protective factors that foster resiliency and how to implement them in school-based counseling programs. The training video is presented in two segments: Resiliency and Protective Factors (14 minutes); and School-Based Strategies for Fostering Resiliency (20 minutes).
High School - Adult              34 min.         1994          V-4033

High School - Adult
Drinking Apart: Families Under the Influence

This documentary by Dr. Ken Rosenberg focuses on three New York City families who attempt to reconcile their lives in the wake of alcohol and drug addictions. The cases include couples and children from varying socio-economic classes and ethnicities, seen as home and as they seek guidance from a team of therapists from the renowned Ackerman Institute for the Family. Allowing the filmmakers access to their home lives and therapy sessions over a three-year period, the families offer a unique and compelling look at the recovery process, and the struggle it entails.
High School - Adult            71 min.       2000              V-4044

High School - Adult
Elephant in the Living Room

This live-action video is an allegorical dramatization of the denial and secrecy that pervades life in an alcoholic home or any other type of dysfunctional family. It points out the need for awareness and the amount of courage necessary to expose the elephant of addiction and dysfunction in our living rooms and expel the no-talk rules from our lives. It emphasizes the importance of talking about each family member's feelings rather than pretending they don't exist. The elephant helps you to disperse the fear and shame that enmesh families in shrouds of secrecy. PLEASE SPECIFY IF YOU WOULD LIKE A VHS OR DVD COPY.
Elementary through Adult            25 min.            1991            DVD-4050

Elementary through Adult
End Broken Promises, Mend Broken Hearts (v1)

This is a 24-minute video about the value and possibilities of educational support groups for children living in families with alcoholism or other drug dependencies.
High School - Adult             24 min.         1998            V-4051

High School - Adult
Lost Childhood: Growing Up in an Alcoholic Family

In this moving film, you'll visit a summer camp program for children of alcoholics and hear youngsters tell their experiences in their own words. Then 15 years later, meet some of these same children as adults who received the tools they need to grow up and lead full, healthy lives. It's an important message of hope for treatment professionals, persons working in the juvenile justice system, clergy and other faith community professionals, parents, and educators. One of the counselors in the film is a young Jerry Moe.


High School - Adult           30 min           2004           V-4137

High School - Adult
Lots of Kids Like Us

A true classic updated for today's young teens. Two young men discover they once attended camp together at a very important time in their lives. In a flashback, this is the story of Ben and his sister, Laurie, trying to cope with their father's alcoholism with help from Conrad, a new friend from camp. Exposed to emotional abuse, they feel they have nowhere to turn. This touching video can help reach children of alcoholics and let them know they ar enot at fault, that they are not alone, and they can get help.
Junior High - High School           28 min.           1998            V-4081

Junior High - High School
My Father's Son

Follows the son of an alcoholic trying to lead a normal life amidst the chaos of a dysfunctional family. Creates awareness for children of alcoholics of their higher susceptibility to chemical addiction.
High School - Adult              33 min.            1985            V-4159

High School - Adult
Poor Jennifer...She's Always Losing Her Hat

This video focuses on both the dynamics of family alcoholism and the healing that begins with awareness and with the breaking of silence. It also shows how community action and advocacy can spark this healing process. The film concludes with a sequence showing the production of a community service television show where the panelists discuss the dynamics of family alcoholism.
Adult              34 min.           1991             V-4090

Reflections From the Heart of a Child

Encourages children to open up to new possibilities - by identifying with another child's vision of parental addiction. Helps children resolve feelings of confusion, loneliness, and fear by removing traditional cloaks of secrecy and shame. Dramatizes the nature and effects of survival roles, as they are passed through chemically dependent generations. PLEASE SPECIFY IF YOU WOULD LIKE A DVD OR VHS COPY.
Elementary - Jr. High            30 min.          1996             DVD-4095

Elementary - Jr. High
Soft Is the Heart of a Child

This award-winning drama explores a classic alcoholic family situation -- a father who drinks too much, a mother plagued by frustration, guilt, and denial, and three children whose suffering takes different forms. Brian, age 11, is the oldest child. He takes on the roles of protector and surrogate parent to his young brother Terry and little sister Lisa. Terry, who bears the brunt of his father's misdirected anger, reacts to the home situation by becoming a troublemaker at school. Lisa, the most affected of all, begins to withdraw from her unhappy reality into a fantasy world. Help arrives through an understanding and perceptive school counselor.


Elementary 30 minutes 1978         DVD4151

Twee, Fiddle & Huff

This video is an animated allegory that offers understanding and hope to young children living with parents affected by alcoholism and other addictions. Many grownup Woolums take a Genie from a bottle when they want to have fun, but most are careful to whirl around with Genie for only a little while. But in the homes of Twee, Fiddle and Huff their parents become so dizzy that they forget how to put the Genie away. By sharing their feelings, Twee, Fiddle and Huff gain courage from each other and decide to seek help from a teacher.
Elementary               17 min.         1990           V-8012

Twee, Fiddle, & Huff

The program explains to young children, perhaps especially those from "addicted" households, the nature of addiction, and how it affects adults (i.e. parents). Children are reassured that the behavior of their parents is not anything that they should blame on themselves. Kids are told that if they find the burden of dealing with this behavior too great, there are other adults who are ready, willing and able to help them.
Junior High - High School                17 min.            1990             V-4113

Junior High - High School
Under the Influence: Kids of Alcoholics

It’s a good feeling to know you can rely on your mom or dad. It’s good to know there’s someone who will have your back when you need them – someone who’s in control when things start to feel out of control. But some kids don’t know that feeling. The reason: They have a parent who’s not in control. And that parent is not in control because he or she is an alcoholic. “It was like I was the mother,” a girl named Kate says. “Nick News with Linda Ellerbee” focuses on kids who have an alcoholic parent. And there are a lot of kids in that category, according to experts – approximately 11 million in the United States alone. You’ll meet Brittany from New York. “I’ve tried to help my mom not to drink. I yelled and cried and begged her to stop,” Brittany explains. You’ll hear from Matthew from Colorado. “I would worry a lot about my dad,” he says. “My grades were suffering because I couldn’t focus.” There’s Kate from New Mexico. “I have lost some of my childhood,” she says. “I know things that some kids my age don’t even know – like maybe should not know.” There’s Rian from Louisiana. “One day (my mom) wouldn’t wake up,” Rian says. “And I started crying, ’cause I thought she was dead.” And there’s Sam from Florida. “I wondered, ‘What’s wrong with my dad? Is he sick?’” Experts say alcoholism is a disease. It’s not your fault. It’s not something you can cure. And as a kid, it’s not something you can control. But you can control how you cope with it. And you can get help – not only for your mom or your dad but also for yourself.

Youth             22 min.            2010               DVD-4216

You're Not Alone

This is a nine-minute video speaking directly to children, giving them information about alcoholism, being safe, finding adults who can help, and about group as a place to find support.
Elementary           9 min.         1998             V-4125