Alcohol Dependence - One of the Causes of the Entire Family Criminal Activities

Article excerpt

Summary - The aetiology of juvenile delinquency is a complex issue and subject of numerous researches, too. On the basis of the conducted researches it is determined that the father's alcoholism in a family and the family migration are preconditions for disrupted partners' relationships and difficulties in the family's socialization in a new environment. Dysfunctional family relations decrease the influence of parental supervision and children's discipline. Children's asocial behaviour which is developed according to the pattern of the compulsion theory can be influenced by the siblings' behaviour, and later on by peers (non family members) with similar social status - deviant training behaviour. The predisposition for asocial behaviour in the family, and subsequent delinquent behaviour outside the family, caused by migration, alcoholism and deviant training, can result in criminal careers of juvenile delinquents and progressive increase of recorded criminal acts, i.e. multiple relapse. The predisposition to develop criminal and delinquent behaviour of juveniles is shown in the paper - family migration, alcoholism and interpretation of delinquent behaviour through the coercion theory i.e. deviant training of the children's socialisation in one family from the area of the Republic of Croatia and the development and culmination of their criminal careers during a 10-year-period.

Key words: alcohol dependence; family; criminal delinquent; criminal act; compulsion theory; deviant training

INTRODUCTION

According to the World Health Organisation, alcohol is a legal psycho-active drug and alcoholism is an addiction that causes great medical and psychological damage to the alcohol addict and his or her primary family. Besides family's economical and emotional poverty, alcohol is becoming more and more a problem for the community in general. All dysfunctions that occur within the family manifest themselves as behavioural dysfunctions. Usually it happens that one spouse takes over all functions, especially those related to children, because the other marital partner, addicted to alcohol, neglected all his or her duties. The result is a dysfunctional family. In those types of families, children already have certain behavioural dysfunctions in the early stage of their life, which can later become criminal behaviour. Numerous literatures cited the fact that 1/3 of all marriages ended because of alcohol.

There are some researches about the influence of parental behaviour on juvenile delinquency in Croatia. Therefore, Basic and Zizak studied the importance of family communication and its influence on elementary school children's behaviour. The results show that a lack of communication, absence of closeness and individuality, detraction, and negative messages are all related to the children's delinquent behaviour. 1

FAMILY'S DIFFICULTIES CAUSED BY ALCOHOLISM

Alcoholics are a complex, community and medical problem common to all societies. According to the world health statistics, alcoholism is placed very high on the scale of serious illnesses. This high rank is the result of the developed culture of drinking, production and consumption of alcohol. Alcoholics face difficulties that can be medical and social. Medical difficulties caused by alcohol can be liver and pancreas damage, psychological disorders etc., while social difficulties are family problems. Family as a basic social community is the primary agent of socialization at the beginning of every individual's development. Children learn through parental model. Researches show that family has a strong influence on creating an individual's personality, points of view, attitude towards others and his or her family believes. Relationship quality between parents and children is extremely important for the future development of children into mature and responsible persons. Very famous researches conducted in the 1950s, topical even today, showed striking differences between delinquent and non- delinquent population regarding the style of family upbringing and the quality of time that parents dedicated to their children. …