Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016


Thirty some years ago I had a friend who was pregnant by a fellow I knew from the program.

She and I had nothing going on romantically. Just friends. At that time I lived with another woman. And I believe in being with only one woman at a time.

The other woman and I lived together for about three more years, had a daughter - then parted ways.

When my friend had the baby, the father went to the hospital to visit. He looked at the baby for a few minutes, left, and never saw the child again.

Eventually the friend and I became more than friends. We dated a few years, then married in the early-nineties. During the ten years we were married, I was the only father the child knew. I took her to 12 step meetings with me, to kickboxing classes and sometimes to school. I tried to be a father to her, though her mother objected to me playing that role.

But now the daughter works for my company - probably one of the smartest people there. She's bright, competent, and still calls me dad.

And to shorten this story, we've made arrangements for me to adopt her this coming March. Even though she's in her early thirties and I'm 77, I think it's never too late to make a father and daughter relationship official.

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