Wednesday, December 3, 2008
My friend and neighbor was carted away this week by the police because of her chronic abuse of alcoholism. It is sad, tragic and heart-wrenching. The effects are so devastating on the family. Not only is the abuser abusing themself, often times as a means of avoid other pressing issues, but they leave behind a spouse (if they haven't already lost them) and kid(s). This was the case here. She has a beautiful 9 year old son who has been suffering in silence the past 2+ years and a loving husband who has done everything he can. Monday, the police had to come in on a domestic violence call, that's all I'll say. But, I was on my way home when the police whizzed past me and I knew where they were going. After getting out of my car, I ran over to see if I could take her son. As soon as I saw this trembling boy, I wanted to sob. I reached down and wrapped my arms around him and told him what a strong boy he was and that he was such a good boy. Earlier that evening he had been hearing something quite the contrary! The neighbors could hear her screaming at him from their house. When her husband got home, he walked in the door and asked what the problem was, and she turned on him. Literally. She threatened his life twice. Many of my friends have been counseling us to be careful with our on-going associations with this family. But I look at it as our family may be the one safe place he can go in the tumult. And, if we have to endure the other trappings, and a lot has gone on, so be it. I can protect my family, but who will protect this innocent boy? So we have hung in there the past 2 years. A year and a half ago, she was arrested with a DUI with my then 6 year old son Jonathon in the car. Amazingly, she got off. Then earlier this fall, she was arrested in her driveway for another DUI, earlier that day she drove my sons Jonathon and Steven home against my wishes from the bus stop. She's getting off on that one too. But Monday's bust is the final straw. The husband is taking action. It has been a heart-wrenching process to watch. This has been an education both for me and my children. Many a conversation has taken place where we have frankly talked about the issue of addiciton and more specifically alcoholism. I am grateful for the principles of our church. I am grateful that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints advocates abstinence from addictive substances. What a blessing, that in the midst of all our struggles, that addiction is one less thing we have to worry about!