What I Want You to Know is a series of reader submissions. It is an attempt to allow people to tell their personal stories, in the hopes of bringing greater compassion to the unique issues each of us face. If you would like to submit a story to this series, click here. Today’s guest post is by Kris.

Five years ago my life looked completely different. I was in college across the country working on my second degree.

I met an incredible man through my roommate and we hit it off instantly. We had so many things in common but most of all we had the same goals.

I always knew there was something special about him, that he came in to my life for a reason. At first we were instant friends. We had both been adopted and had several siblings, mixed and blended families. We understood each other in ways others couldn’t because of our upbringing. Mostly we just clicked.

I found out on his 26th birthday we were expecting and we were both thrilled to become parents. It was like a dream come true until our son was born.

I was never a stranger to addiction having grown up around alcoholism. Neither was he as he came from a family with an unfortunate drug and alcohol problem.

When he suffered an injury prescription abuse became like a shadow slowly taking over our life. Our son was 6 weeks old when he first told me he needed help.

Slowly one trip to rehab turned to two and then a few months had gone by and I could no longer keep track of the trips to detox and to the ER. As I watched my son grow I saw his father slowly dying.

Before my son reached his first birthday we were losing everything. Rent was several months over due, an eviction notice was outside our door.

Pain pills turned to Heroin and the man I once admired had become a full blown drug addict.

I had no choice but to pack a bag and fly to the other side of the country with my son.

We left behind everything, our home, my car, even his father. I had to start my life over and it took me 2 years to stop looking back.

Eventually the phone calls stopped and the man who once would have given his son the world seemed to not exist.

I want you to know that a single mom hasn’t always make an irresponsible choice.

I want you to know that addiction doesn’t start on the street. It starts at home.

I want you to know that it is ok to walk away, to find a healthy life for yourself even if there aren’t children involved.

Most of all I want you to know it’s not your fault.

It would be easy to say if I could go back I would do things differently. But the truth is I have an incredible son and I would never change that. He was the one who was always meant to be in my life.