Would ever keep a secret this huge from your spouse? When so many relationships are destroyed by lies or half-truths, would you ever deliberately stay quiet about something THIS dangerous, even if it meant that one of you might be hurt if the truth ever came out? Would you feel betrayed by the lie? Would you feel hurt that both people involved thought you wouldn’t be able to handle what had happened? Or would you be thankful that they decided to handle the situation in this way?
The day before high school my dad had a talk with me about drinking. He made me a promise saying something to the effect of, “If you are ever in a situation where you’re drunk, your driver is drunk, etc. you can call me and I’ll pick you up. No matter what time it is, know I will be there for you and I will not be mad or tell your mother.”
Well, during my junior year, I lied to my parents and told them I was sleeping over at my best friend’s house. Instead, I went to a kegger with my friends. We got wasted and the party ended about 2. My friend that drove was drunk and insisted that she was fine to drive. All I could hear was my father’s voice giving me that talk.
So, I called him. He was all groggy, but made the 45 minute drive to pick me up. Not only did he take me home, but my 2 friends as well. It was a silent car ride and I just felt like he was going to explode once my friends were out of the car.
That was 10 years ago, and he still hasn’t talked about it to this day. If any of you have children entering this age, I suggest you make the promise with your children. Who knows what could have happened to us that night if he wasn’t there for me.
So writing this made me want to ask him about it and I just got off the phone with my dad and reminded him of this. Well first he said, “Finally! I haven’t talked to you all year!” True dad. He said he still hasn’t told my mom and claims he knows how to keep a secret, unlike me who has “told the whole damn internet.”
For those of you asking how he got “away with it,” he’s a doctor and often gets calls in the middle of the night to go to the hospital. My mom wouldn’t have known the difference. He said he felt no guilt not telling her, as it could have ended up a much more difficult conversation. He was amused that this got so much attention and jokingly snarled at me for that night that happened 10ish years ago.
I’m pleased to hear that other parents have made this promise and that some future parents of teenagers are going to have this same conversation. I hope that this attention can prevent a tragedy from happening. Thanks for the kind words about my father! He really is awesome and is happy this lesson reached my, “My Face or Space Book or whatever you call them people.”
The debate is strong regarding this situation. On one hand, the child’s safety should always be number 1 priority…but on the other hand, people are saying that by not telling the mother about the incident, they didn’t trust her enough to care about her son and look out for him in the future. Which side of the argument are you on?
Obviously, this situation is tricky and could have ended in a very different way, but maybe the true hero of this story is the parent who kept his promise – even if it disappointed him to do so. Maybe the debate doesn’t matter at all. Maybe the only thing that matters is that his son trusted him enough to save him when he needed help the most.
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