Last year wasn’t very good for Maryland delegate Don H. Dwyer Jr.
In August, he admitted to being drunk when accidentally crashing his boat into another full of children. Four of the youngsters were injured with one, a five year old girl, taken by helicopter to Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.
Dwyer’s second problem with 2012 was on election day when Maryland voters approved marriage equality, with a 52 percent majority. The Tea Party Republican has, in the past, suggested gays and lesbians were a threat to children and same-sex marriage would lead to gay sexuality being taught in schools.
In an interview with the Maryland Gazette, the politician discusses the incident and points to his increased drinking over recent years. He notes his alcohol intake spiked due to the separation from his wife of 31 years, and the efforts to keep the state from having gay marriage. He felt double crossed by fellow delegates who switched their positions and instead voted for LGBT couples and families.
‘That betrayal really affected me,’ he said to the newspaper. ‘I was physically ill. You pour your heart into an issue like that and it’s devastating.’
He never describes himself as an alcoholic, but admits he was ‘heading toward dependency — not there yet, but on the path.’
After the 2012 August accident, Dwyer admitted himself into a weekend treatment center. He will participate in a 26 week counseling program and attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.
‘I don’t want to get in a situation where I start drinking to cover up or mask my personal issues,’ he said to the Maryland Gazette.