Question: Dear Luise: I have a 32 year old son. Married 14 yrs. to a lady I love and like.They have the two most wonderful little people born in this century, I’m pretty sure. The kids, her 4.5 and him 3 well thats for another day. .(we live 500 miles apart. My son calls me 2 or 3 times a week, with little things mostly….I’m purty sure he is one of the neatist people,,,ever, His currnt job going on 4 yrs now and the one before that was 7 years,they love his, What’s not to love, Apparently I decided to become almost blind to there alcoholism. It gets worse. My son “and” my daughter in law are “drunk drivers”. That is why my son finally had to tell me. 3 days ago he got his 4th DUI. Pelican Bay was mentioned. He’s on bail, with court next Wed. I’m taking a crash course =no pun intended…in alcolism and DUI’s. It’s been awhile. Let’s just say my son is the first of his generation to have the gene of Alcohol. Old school. My mom and sis were raging alcheholics, but it’s been over 30 years since they got sober. Practically everyone of my mom’s generation were alcholics in my family,but very MIDDLE CLASS and they ALL sobered up eventually and it didn’t kill any of them as far as I know. I’m no real prize either mind you. I’m 60 and 10 yrs. on disability because of “severe depression”…See? No prize. My son is an amazing guy. He has had other bad habits in his teens, but when he makes up his mind to stop, he does. I,m most scared of his wife. She too, is one of the neatest people you could meet. Both of them are great parents (ah hum), until this little “alcohic/drunk driver” thingy came up. Both of them are in wishful thinking still, saying they can stop “on there own”…good luck on that. Thay are almost a week sober.I’m knowing that there’s not a damn thing I can do to help. What I want to know is “how to be” around them now. I have a long held flight to visit them next week. The day we find out if he goes to jail or prison. This is one of most surreal moments of my entire life. And I’ve had a pretty interesting life. I’d love it if you’d write to me if you relate. V.
Answer: Dear V.: Just be yourself. You sound like a realistic and compassionate woman. That’s what they need. No answers and at the same time, nothing swept under the rug. We are all imperfect. That takes away our right to judge and preach. You aren’t going to be an “enabler” and you aren’t going to lecture; you’re going because you care. Blessings, Luise