Have you ever heard a phrase like, "we have great youth in this ward except for the bishop's kid?" Whether more wayward or more visible, it is not uncommon for the children of the leaders to struggle. For all those bishops and stake presidents who have had wayward children, there is consolation in knowing that they are not alone. Ironically, this problem has been present for a long time. From Cain's murder of Abel to the wickedness of Jacob's sons, to the murmuring of Laman and Lemuel, to the wickedness of the sons of Mosiah and Alma, the offspring of the righteous have often struggled to keep the faith.
Wayward children are heart-breaking for righteous parents. For Alma and Mosiah, it must have been even worse because of their high ranking positions. Their sons were in an influential position and used it to their advantage.
L. Tom Perry
"Imagine the influence he had on other young people. He was the son of the head of the Church, and his companions were the sons of the king. They were talented young men with the appeal to attract many followers. Imagine the pride in Alma's heart as many followed him, doing 'after the manner of his iniquities.' Because of the power of his words and his ability to attract many, it would have been difficult for him to change the course he was pursuing to the course the Lord would expect, without a real earth-shaking event. Of course, the Lord had a major event in mind for him." (Heroes From the Book of Mormon, p. 99)