September 20, 2012 at 6:11 PM CDT - Updated June 28 at 7:27 AM
JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A non-profit organization is using a controversial public service announcement to highlight the children of alcoholics could view their parents.
The video, posted by the Finnish organization Lasinen Lapsuus, or Fragile Childhood, shows several visibly frightened children staring at something outside the view of the camera. The video later reveals each child looking at a "monster", an ugly, sinister character such as a creepy, giant rabbit, a woman resembling a zombie, a scary Santa Claus, or a sinister clown.
Courage Al-Anon Family Group counselor Grace Jones is a mediator for the affiliate organization, Alateen in Jonesboro.
"Alateen is for the young people whose lives have been affected by someone else's drinking. Not necessarily parents, it can be grandparents, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, anyone that has affected their life in such a way that they need another young person that knows what's going on that they can talk to," she said.
Jones has seen the video before. "Those are monsters there, and that's what our loved ones become once they put something in their system."
Jones agrees with the depiction, but also said each experience varies with each teen.
"I have had two siblings from the same family. One could talk about their parent with such love and the other with hate because they look at it different."
Jones said in some cases, children can become the thing they hate.
"They become a monster trying to fight the monster."
People who viewed the video agreed it is scary and should have the potential to make parents who are substance abusers think twice about their behavior.
One man said, "It would be effective on the parents if they watch this and see how the kid's reaction is."
"That frightens me as an adult to think that my child would view me as anything but her mother," one woman said.
Another woman said, "Nobody as a parent wants their child to view them as a monster or a bad person. You're their parent. You're their safety net."
Jones emphasized that the most important things children of substance abusers need to remember are they are not to blame, and to seek help.
"I just hope that everyone that has a situation in their home will not be embarrassed or ashamed. Some of our most prominent leading citizens that hold down jobs today you'd never know (are substance abusers)."
Alateen meets Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. in Jonesboro.
"We have children that come from other counties other than Craighead," Jones said.
Click here to visit the web site of the Jonesboro chapter of Courage Al-Anon Family Group, or contact Grace Jones at (870) 926-2416.