A father of a recovering addict wrote to me, I wonder if we will ever outlive the scare of addiction. Our family had an incident during Christmas. My three children got into a discussion that became an argument. As tempers rose, my son’s former struggles with addiction were brought up. My son has been healthy for eight years and he is 25 years old, so he was really young at the time. I talked with my son and ensured him that the past is the past and that we have all made mistakes in our lives. For the girls, I made it extremely clear that the addiction incident will not cross their lips again or there will be severe consequences. I could imagine how he felt under attack for something that happened years ago.

My reflection: I, too, wonder if we will ever outlive the chains of addiction. If my recovering son had had a kidney disease, people would inquire compassionately about his health. But with the disease of addiction, some responses continue to range from those of suspicion (Is he still clean? How are you sure?), curiosity (How does he stay clean while working in the music field?), or contempt (He’s nothing but a drug addict. I remember.).

Today’s Promise to consider: Recovering addicts need safety and trust. They cannot continue to live their lives under the heaviness and scrutiny of all the mistakes they’ve made. They need an advocate, and I will stand firmly for my son and for all those who have the courage to live in sobriety.


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5 Comments on "A FATHER TAKES A STAND"

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Kim schmidt

I have thought about this with daughter. How long will I call her my daughter the addict instead of just my daughter. I think she deserves not to be labeled.

You are so right, we have had the same things happen in our home, I am a fierce advocate for them ( I have 2 sons in recovery) I haven’t gotten into my girls faces like you have, I do remind them it’s a disease and they need our love and support. But I am reminded of a feeling I often have at al anon meetings when someone is speaking about their spouse or sibling, I wouldn’t ever say it because I haven’t experienced it and thus truthfully don’t know, but I have thought there is no way in hell… Read more »
Jill Prevas
I agree that the father’s son has a disease and it’s wonderful that his son is in recovery. However, addiction is a family disease. I believe it’s important that the siblings have a healthy outlet to process their pent up emotions. It’s also important for the son in recovery to realize that his active disease did effect the entire family. Yes, addict’s should not be shamed because they have a disease, but I don’t think they need to be pampered, even in recovery. Our daughter is 25 yrs old and has 6 1/2 yrs of recovery in NA. We have… Read more »
This is so, so true. Discussing this with family or bringing anything up about addiction is so very difficult for me, as a mom! My son, 27, graduates from drug court next week and clean for a year. To me it seems like an eternity, but one day at a time makes a difference. One is damned if you do or don’t discuss anything about this. I know I should be encouraging to my son/family to not hide the addiction to others, but it just hurts so much to even talk about any of it. I know hiding it, doesn’t… Read more »
Pat Nichols
In these situations I have discovered that “if” my son is in recovery (worked the 12 steps with a sponsor etc.) and I too am in recovery then the actions of those who are “not” in recovery are understandable and therefore their words are not hurtful nor do they create anger within those who are mature in their recovery. My son made his amends as did I. Recovery is a life long journey. Recovery changes who we are and a new life style is created which will last a lifetime. We understand those who have chosen “not” to be in… Read more »