'Duck Dynasty' Uncle Si Robertson Talks about Wife, Son's Mental Illness and Alcoholism

Oct 10, 2013 06:03 PM EDT

A&E's hit series "Duck Dynasty" has won over millions of fans with the Robertson family's faith, love and humor. They work together, play together and pray together. At the end of each episode, we see the family gather around the dinner table, hold hands and give thanks.

But life is not always happy, happy, happy. Uncle Si Robertson is now revealing the alcoholism, mental illness and suicide attempts that he faced in his own life in the new book, "Si-cology: Tales and Wisdom from Duck Dynasty's Favorite Uncle."

RadarOnline reports that when Si Robertson was still a small kid, his mother "suffered a nervous breakdown and was diagnosed as manic-depressive", Si writes, "she spent a lot of time in hospitals and the state mental institution."

The reality star admits his own brain is "faulty," and says he battled alcoholism as a young adult, especially while he was serving in Vietnam. His drinking problem got so bad he got in the habit of carrying a fifth of liquor in his pocket, and even to the point he came close to killing a Vietnamese boy and a Vietnamese woman on two separate occasions.

"I drank so much beer and whiskey in Vietnam that I decided I would quit drinking alcohol altogether once I returned home," he writes in his book. "I saw what alcohol was doing to me in Vietnam and realized I needed to stop for good."

His brother Phil also struggled with the same drinking problem. Phil was even arrested for seriously injuring a couple during a bar fight.

"To be honest, Phil was not a very good person until he found Jesus Christ," Si writes. "But he repented his sins and is sharing the rest of his life sharing God's Word."

Si also writes very honestly of his wife's difficulty in conceiving, he explains this in a recent interview with FOX, "She went to all the specialists and they all said, 'You'll never have kids.' I said, "Don't worry about it." She said, 'Yeah but I know you love 'em so I'm not going to marry you.' I said, 'Hey, don't worry about that. The doctors don't have the final word. I believe in a higher power,' and I've got what you call two miracle babies, my daughter, and my son and they gave me four grandsons a piece."

The couple has two grown children, Trasa and Scott. Si jokes about he had to ask his wife Christine to marry him over a hundred times before she said yes. Retorts Christine, "It was about seventy-five."

Read: Duck Dynasty's Uncle Si Robertson Introduces Wife Christine on 'Good Morning America'

Uncle Si Robertson Wife

Si also wrote of his son Scott, who was born two months premature, and "was trouble before he was even born," according to his father. Scott suffered brain damage due to a liver problem not long after he was born, and because of that, "Scott was suicidal from the time he was about five years old. His behavior was really erratic as a child. When Scott would get tired, he would throw his arms out and fall backward," Si explained.

The 65-year-old says things came to a head when Scott was 11 and his mother caught him attempting to jump out of a second-story window. After a visit to the hospital his son was later diagnosed with Asperger's, the doctors finally figured out the medicine he needed and then everything was fine.

Many people wonder why Duck Dynasty is so popular. According to Fox, Si said, "I think it's going back to the pioneer days. We're reminding Americans what this country was founded on, Bible-toting, God-fearing men and women."