Alcoholism is a large, strongly growing problem in America today. It’s pretty sad when a man gets inebriated to the point that he forgets he’s supposed to be watching his own child. Dr. Laura was correct in telling the man that he needs to get help for his alcohol problem.
Just getting help for his alcoholism isn’t the only thing he has to do, however. He also needs to apologize to his wife. This man needs to tell her that he was wrong in what he did and that nothing like that will ever happen again. He needs to prove to her that he can be a good father as well as a good husband. Improving his actions is a great first step that may help him earn a little of his wife’s trust back. If he doesn’t get any trust from her, then their marriage simply just won’t work. Neither will his duty as a father.
Supervision definitely is needed in this case. I definitely don’t think he should be allowed to be alone with his child. Obviously he can’t be trusted to watch her alone if he got drunk while watching her and ended up completely oblivious as to what he was supposed to be doing. If he’s with the child around other people- his wife, a grandparent, an aunt or uncle- that’s fine. But does he honestly think that someone’s going to trust him alone with the child after this past experience? I know I wouldn’t.
I, personally, don’t see how this guy can feel sorry for himself. He screwed up big time and he shouldn’t even get a second chance. He is getting off incredibly easy by only needing someone there when he’s with the child. In most cases Social Services would be so involved that the guy wouldn’t even be able to see his kid for a certain period of time. Even in that situation, after that grace period was up, he’d still have to have to have a social worker with him when he wanted to see the kid. In most states, what he did would be considered a form of child abuse. That’s how it should be looked at here, but apparently he’s getting some major lenience.
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This man needs to realize how lucky he is to have a wife that will still want him around. If I were him, I would suck it up and swallow my pride. Take the rehabilitation classes for his little alcoholism problem, apologize up and down to the wife, and start acting like an adult so as to earn a little bit of trust and respect back from his wife. He won’t be out of the clear completely, but it will be a start.