Friday, October 21, 2005

Sad and so very frustrating

Woman charged with killing her three children
The grandmother had tried to gain custody because her daughter suffered from schizophrenia and had threatened her children after refusing to take her meds. Yet, they said they couldn't do anything. The mayor, who justifiably said he was sickened by the act (who isn't?) stated that there were places where people can take their children when they can't care for them anymore.

So there are two officials that truly don't understand schizophrenia is a mental illness, if you stop taking your meds (which seems to be common with this illness and other somewhat 'mild' issues) you snap. You don't think, you're not logical, you are NOT SAFE TO BE AROUND. Unless the family is lying about her illness, it isn't that she decided she couldn't care for them, or that she wanted to get rid of them. From all accounts she loved her kids - but she was extremely ill and NOT TO BE TRUSTED. She caved to the voices in her head telling her to feed her kids to the sharks - my god! How, do we keep putting children at risk when their parents are unwell like this?

If a family member sees the risk and tries to act to protect the children - but the parent who is unwell seems fine, with or without meds - then the officers, judges, child welfare agents, whomever - they assume you must have an ulterior motive. After all, children are best left with their parents, right?

Unfortunately for these three, cute, wonderful little children - the world has failed to keep them safe. What will it take to educate the world that there are certain medical conditions that keep people from being able to be the parents they want to be? Now, I'm not advocating taking the family away from anyone with an illness, mind you ... let alone just psychological illnesses even. But, if immediate family members recognize that the children are in danger - then they at least need to be kept in a process of supervision where those children can spend time with their parents and still stay safe.

Some days I just want to walk away from my democratic and liberal background and become a communist where we can build communes where multiple families live together so that this woman wouldn't have been allowed to leave alone with her children without supervision and intervention. Extreme thought, I know... I don't want to give up my freedom - but then again, freedom was pretty expensive for those three children.

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