Should Alcoholic Moms Be Allowed to Keep Their Children?

Sasha Brown-Worsham
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Alcoholism, like breast cancer, is a debilitating disease. It isn't a choice or something that people can control getting. But an alcoholic or drug addict who is drinking or engaging in their drug of choice is an altered person who isn't making the wisest choices while hammered.

Last week, Florida mom Kira Logsdon-Mitchell, 37, went to a bar with her 4-year-old son in the car. Once she had been there a little while, she brought him inside and fell asleep with him in her arms. At the bar! The bartender called the police and found that she was three times the legal limit for intoxication.

Nowhere in the piece does it suggest that Logsdon-Mitchell was an alcoholic, but with two children home alone who are only 7 and 9 and a young son who could have easily been kidnapped or hurt by anyone in the bar, there is no doubt she has a problem with drinking.

It's a heartbreaking story and one with no easy answers. But I would like to think that if I were in the throes of a disease like alcoholism that someone would step in and remove my children until I got better.

The fact is, a woman like Logsdon-Mitchell is greatly endangering her children. If that bartender hadn't called the police, she would have presumably driven her son home. Anything could have happened to the two who WERE at home, and falling asleep in a bar with your 4-year-old on your lap is generally not recommended.

But with so many friends (and family members) who do have varying degrees of alcoholism, making a hard and fast "Alcoholics Should Lose Their Children" rule seems silly. It isn't one size fits all (like anything else) and there are no easy answers.

A woman like Logsdon-Mitchell who is clearly endangering her children should probably lose them until she gets help and proves she will no longer be a danger to them. But should ALL alcoholics lose their children? No.

They should get help and support. But punishment will not solve the problem.

Do you think alcoholics should be allowed to keep their children?

 

Image via soyculto /Flickr

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