Letter to my Son

I wrote this letter to my son 10 months ago, 43 days into my sobriety. I still do not have all the answers and feel that I may never have the "right" one.

 

2-13-14

 

Dear Christian,

    As your Father I am writing you this letter, not knowing when or if you will ever read it. As I write this, you are almost 8 months old or 230 days to be exact and the single greatest thing that has ever happened to me. I never knew I could love someone as much as I love you and I hope I have showed you that.

 

Christian, I have a drinking problem, some may even call me an alcoholic. My last drink was 43 days ago and since then I have been trying to figure out and understand the grasp that alcohol had on me. Before you were born I was reckless, I made poor choices which resulted in spending multiple occasions in a jail cell. Am I a bad person? No, I don’t think so, but under the influence of alcohol, my mind was taken over by substance abuse, I had lost control. Even throughout your mothers pregnancy with you I continued to use, which made it a very difficult time for her and I cannot get that time back. I lied about drinking even after you were born, put you in danger because of it and was very selfish. All of these things I didn’t realize at the time, I wasn’t myself and in my mind I wasn’t doing anything wrong. Today I understand my behavior and know that I don’t want to be that person. I want to be a good husband, a good father and a good man.

 

I do not drive today because on more than one occasion I chose to get behind the wheel of a car and drive, resulting in my time in jail, among other consequences. I haven’t had a drivers license for the past 4 years and 83 days and I haven’t made my life an easy road and I have accepted that. But, at this point I haven’t been able to accept how my decisions will affect you as my son. I already wonder what the “other kids” will say or how their parents might joke behind your back because you have the “drunk” dad that can’t drive and has to pick him up from school on his bike. People can say whatever they want about me but I dread you having to endure hateful people just because im not like everyone else’s dad. Im still processing my response to your question in a couple years when you are walking, talking and learning new things. That question is “Dad, how come you don’t drive? Or why does Mommy always drive?” As of right now, I don’t know what my response will be. I want you to understand your fathers past but I don’t want to confuse you at a young age. I also don’t ever want to lie to you. If you are reading this then im sure you’ve asked that question and hopefully I gave you an answer that made sense and that you understood. I also want to apologize if when you were younger you did have to endure mean people. Hopefully I taught you how to handle yourself in those situations and how to be the bigger person.

 

I cannot change the past and I would not want a do over because then I would of never had you. What I do want is to be a good role model for you and the only way I know how to do that is to be sober and to teach you right from wrong so you will never make the same mistakes with alcohol that I did. I also hope and pray that my past will have a positive effect on how you deal with certain risks that you may come across as a teenager or young adult. If you are ever in trouble or don’t know what to do, come to me, ask me, we can talk about it. Believe it or not I may have the answer.  One last note for you is this, if we gave you a younger brother or sister, look out for them, teach them new things, take time to play with them even if you don’t want to. Be a good big brother. Also, be sweet to your mother, tell her you love her, hug her, you only get one.  Make me proud. I love you, son.

 

Dad