A video of a father telling his 8-year-old son that his mother passed away from a heroin overdose has gone viral (video below).
The video was posted on Facebook on Oct. 10 by Brenden Bickerstaff-Clark, the Daily Mail reported. In just two days, the video has been shared nearly 600,000 times and has garnered more than 24 million views.
The footage shows Bickerstaff-Clark sitting across a table from his 8-year-old son. The father's friend is seen sitting next to the boy.
"I have something to tell you, OK?” he tells his son as he holds his hands. “Mommy died last night.”
“What? What do you mean, my mom? How?” the little boy asks his father.
“From drugs,” he responds.
The boy then weeps on the table while Bickerstaff-Clark's friend comforts him. The father then leaps over the table to hug his son.
“I’m so sorry,” he tells his son. “I love you.” He then looks at the camera and says, “That’s enough.”
Bickerstaff-Clark took to Facebook to raise awareness about addiction. He wrote:
This is for any and every addict with children. Today I had to tell my 8 year old son that his mommy died from a drug overdose last night. This is the realization and reality of our disease. Dont let this disease have to make someone tell your child that your dead because of drugs. This was one of the hardest things Ive ever had to do. My son has no mother because of heroin… kinda hard to hear but u can hear what we're saying. Please get help so our children dont have to suffer. This wasnt staged. This was real. I had someone record this so addicts with children can see the seriousness of our epidemic. I am a recovering addict myself with 94 days clean today… please share n maybe help save a childs parents life.
Despite Bickerstaff-Clark’s intentions, not everyone thought posting the video online was a good idea.
“It is HORRIFYING that you video taped this and then posted it for the world to see,” wrote one Facebook user. “This is a child that likely will be very disturbed and traumatized by you choosing to post this very private moment.”
“This should not be shared with anyone unless he so chooses when he is an adult,” the user continued. “You can get your point across without exploiting a MINOR child. Not to mention the way that you told him.
“I hope social services gets involved and offers your son some help and therapy, and you some parenting classes.”
Other social media users thought some good could come from the video.
“Im a hard man to make cry. But I have a 9 year old son and I couldn't [imagine] someone have to tell him that me or my wife [passed] away,” wrote another user. “This video hit me so hard to watch this young man... I agree this shouldn't have been something that was taped it's a private moment. But maybe a mother or father [who's] addicted will see this [and think] twice about the consequences.
“As for this young man that lost his mom my prayers are with him. He suffered a great loss may God hold him and show him nothing but love for the rest of his life”