A Siouxland father is speaking about the effects of addiction on the family after his wife was recently arrested after a relapse.
Brenda Louis was charged with one count of reckless use of fire and is being held in the Woodbury County Jail on a $2,000 bond. The story garnered some attention on Facebook reaching more than 28,000 people and has been shared 140 times. That attention led Brenda’s family reaching out to KCAU 9 to talk about the struggles of addiction.
Quincy Louis is caring for the four children he shares with his wife Brenda while she is in jail. He said his wife’s addiction to alcohol is a problem that affects the entire family.
“The family is always caught off guard because everything is going so well and she’s doing so good and then out the blue. You know there is big gaps, like last time was 16 months. She hadn’t had a drink and this was all on her own and then that pretty much happened,” said Quincy Louis.
Court documents said Brenda admitted to being under the influence on “vanilla” when she allegedly set three fires in her home. She told police she drank it because she was on probation and not allowed to drink alcohol.
Trisha Wagner with the Jackson Center said addiction is a chronic progressive disease that can impact the children of addicts
“Children who are experiencing this with their family, they might start to have some behaviors. They may struggle to focus on school work because they are worried about their family member. If it’s mom or dad in treatment, how are they doing? When are they coming home. So it’s really important to be understanding for that child in that situation,” said Wagner.
Wagner said the best way to help an addict is to be available when they need to talk.
“It’s really crucial to be involved because they have so much to share how much the individual has changed through the progression of the disease and how it has impacted the entire family,” Wagner said.
Quincy said he tells his kids that he will always be there for them, and he does not have the same problem as their mother. He says they’re all there for the family.
“I have kids who don’t hate their mother through addiction. I think that’s a big thing. Some people get angry. Some people hate. Some people turn the other cheek, but we got kids that genuinely love their mom and that’s because that good has outweighed the bad,” said Quincy Louis.
Quincy said he’s considering writing a book about his family’s experience with alcoholism. He believes sharing his family’s story with other families will make a difference.