~ Chemically Dependent Family Roles ~ The Hero – These children try to make sure that the family appears normal to the rest of the world. They develop a strong sense of responsibility and project an image of competence and achievement. This is often, but not always, the first-born child. They learn as children that someone has to be responsible for the family, and if the parents are inducing chaos, it is up to the “hero” to provide stability. These people grow up to be academically or professionally successful, although, they are prone to denying their own emotions and feeling like imposters. The Lost Child – Often the third child or later in an alcoholic family is the “lost child.” This is the child that is unable to have his or her needs met, becomes overwhelmed, and withdraws from the world. In both childhood and adulthood, he or she may be unfocused, unmotivated, and appear helpless. “Lost” children may tend to try to attach to partners or others that substitute for their unmet need for a
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Child Welfare Professionals, Dependent Family Roles