When you are arrested on DWI charges, many things are likely running through your mind. You worry about being able to keep your driver's license and perhaps even your job. Longer term, you could be concerned your career will suffer.
The truth is you are right to worry a DWI conviction could negatively affect your reputation and career. That is why stopping a charge from ever becoming a conviction is important.
A charge by itself should not do much, if any, damage to your reputation as long as you and your circle keep quiet about it. However, it can throw a wrench into situations such as custody talks if you are going through a divorce. This is especially true if the charge involves children in the car or if you have a history of drinking while driving.
A conviction can certainly lead to adverse outcomes such as people viewing you as someone who has a drinking problem and who lost his or her driver's and professional license.
For certain professionals, such as doctors and nurses, a DWI conviction can lead to the suspension of their medical license. Chances are you will be able to keep your license, but you will expend a lot of effort fighting to keep it, and your reputation could also suffer.
On a greater scope, employers in a wide variety of fields require applicants to disclose convictions and undergo background checks. A DWI conviction could lead to you not getting a job. The situation can become especially serious if you have multiple convictions. Many states consider prior DWI convictions only if they have occurred in a time frame such as the past 10 years. On the other hand, Texas does not have this lookback period. A conviction from 25 years ago when you were a different person could lead to increased fines and jail time. Needless to say, having to spend time in jail means you cannot go to work.