Suze and her husband, Gus, had two daughters together, Cassie and Lexi, the former of whom formed a close bond with Suze upon entering puberty. Suze and Gus had a strained relationship due to his constant flirting with other women and her behavior while drunk, leading to constant arguments between them. The night before Cassie started ninth grade, Suze and Gus had an intense argument which led to their separation.
Although Suze let him visit their daughters on weekends, Gus started spacing out his visits and eventually stopped visiting entirely. One night, Gus crashed into a truck while driving home from work inebriated, leading Suze to rush with her daughters to his hospital room. Later on, a week before Cassie's fifteenth birthday, Gus called Cassie and entered their house one last time, collecting spoons and dishes from the house before disappearing entirely.