How to explain a DUI charge to your children

Posted On May 19, 2017 Drunk Driving by John Allen Phebus

A few months ago, you met a friend you had not seen in a long time for lunch. Catching up turned out to be a lot of fun, and the lunch went on for hours. You enjoyed some wine, but you felt perfectly fine to drive. However, you did not realize your brake light was out and got pulled over on the way home. Long story short, you ended up with a DUI charge.

In shock and feeling ashamed, you kept quiet about the charge. But now that you are facing the consequences, you are not sure how to explain it to your children.

Admit you made a mistake

Your children’s routine has likely changed; for example, you may no longer be able to drive them to school and sports. It is important to admit you made a mistake, but do not tear yourself down unnecessarily. It is okay to say something like, “I felt fine driving home from lunch with Courtney, but the police test said something else. I think the test was wrong, but because of the results, I have to take a break from driving, and Grandpa is going to help out.”

Of course, if you know you were driving intoxicated and had no excuse for doing so, it is perfectly acceptable to say so. “I drank too much at lunch and made the foolish decision to drive home. That was wrong, so I’m taking a timeout from driving,” could be an example of what to say.

Accept the consequences

Refrain from driving on a suspended license regardless of how much you want to help your kids. Being caught doing so can make your situation much worse, especially if you are going through a divorce as it can make the case more complicated. Tell your children that it will not happen again, as the penalties for repeat offenders are harsh.

Fight for your rights

Although you should obey your current restrictions, it does not mean you do not have the right to fight the charges. Be sure to hire legal help to increase your chances of a fair outcome.