Growing up in an abusive home will drastically affect how easily certain things are available to the average adult. Small habits, such as hygiene, cleanliness and tidiness, can become issues, as well as large problems, such as lack of sexual boundaries, destructive/non-productive relationships, and self abuse. Obviously, these issues touch the home life, the work environment and their ability to succeed. Even with all of the resources in the world, the habits of an abusive home can cripple an individual’s ability to achieve stability and improve their job quality.
If you have an employee who has obviously grown up in the same home as an alcoholic or drug addict, their personal problems may become your professional problems. Aside from being so emotionally drained that they are unable to handle any type of work-related stress, their issues can be far deeper than they appear. What are some of these typical problems and what can you do to assist them?
Avoid Confrontation. Direct confrontation is typically a strong emotional trigger and will elicit a temperamental reaction from your employee. This is due to the fact that their role models were also unable to handle any type of correction or confrontation about their lifestyles. You can assist by slipping rejections, problems and underlying issues in through the side door. Remark on them with casual carelessness, do not appear to make a big deal about it, and just make sure they get the memo.
Encourage Creativity. Addicts are notorious for desiring a certain routine and a certain environment in order to establish their comfort zone. Chances are, your employee may not have been allowed to “think outside the box” growing up, so be sure to encourage them to harness their creative and innovative thinking for the betterment of the company.
Speak Softly to Their Temper. Addicts are filled with guilt and frustration, and household victims are typically filled with an equal amount of anger at their perpetrator. Many children of addicts must deal with this anger, even after years of being an adult. Remember, they are immune to your own temper and your own raised voice. Instead, speak softly and gently to them, not only to calm them down, but also to help them see how irrationally they are behaving.
Ignore Their Problem. This is not to say that employee assistance programs and victims of abuse programs are not highly effective when used with certain temperaments. However, making a big deal about their past or allowing them to publicly blow their top every once in a while is a bad idea. This encourages them to continue thinking of themselves as a victim. It is important that they learn how to harness this control over their lives.
In addition to this, using employee drug and alcohol testing on a regular basis is highly recommended. Contact CMM Technology for our quality testing equipment today: +618-9204-2500.
Stewart, Sheila, and Rae Simons. When Daddy hit Mommy. Broomall, Pa.: Mason Crest Publishers, 2011. Print.
Steinmetz, Suzanne K. The cycle of violence: assertive, aggressive, and abusive family interaction. New York: Praeger, 1977. Print.