MDJunction - People Helping People
 
Ask a Question
12/06/2011 11:18 AM

Violence & Mentally Ill People

JustJulie62
JustJulie62Posts: 925
Member

Might be trigger for some folks….hope not. More of a commentary really, but it might bring people down. I believe it to be an important topic, as I hope you do as well.

After reading the post about the Policeman Shooting the Mother who killed her own children and Cap'n's question about what the relevancy of that post was, I would like to comment/share my take on it. The poster states she can't fathom anyone doing this but demons, and had she (the mother) had mental illness before, that it would have been noticed prior to this horrific event. This is an all too common event, and I think the relevance to the topic relates directly to mental illness; the system, society and government's lack of being able to provided much needed services. Sadly, there are just some people who can't or won't be saved. This is one of the cold, hard ugly facts of life. Look at all the people seeking help in these forums for their BP/Other spouses as their loved ones are not seeking or complying with treatment-they are scared and confused.

This is a tough topic, because violence with the mentally ill and the lack of support prior, during or after an incident, is in most cases just not happening. First off, look at the many people who suspect they have an issue but don't seek help. Their friends and family might see it, but they don't. Or both of them are embarrassed to even entertain the thought “someone in the family has a mental illness” – Stigma rears its' ugly head!

Then there are the patients that are misdiagnosed, non-compliant (don't take meds, substance abuse) or those that truly are too ill to serve as their own advocate that have NO family or support system (not to mention poverty, lack of insurance). I refer to them as the Lost Souls. Many of them live on the street and we call them “homeless” people. Where are their angels?

Here in Portland the Police Department is undergoing supposedly rigorous training to learn how to effectively deal with the mentally ill without invoking violence such is the high rate of police violence towards obviously mentally ill individuals so high in our city. Sad stories that could have had a much happier ending had these cops understood who they were dealing with and responded appropriately (calling in mental health experts). They shot an unarmed suicidal person for Pete's sake (what if they were really not ready)! They (coppers) kicked the shit out of a 29 year old man – it was caught on tape – family sued – they won. He had no weapon, and was well known as a street drifter with a history of mental illness-and NO violent history. He didn't live at home NOT because his family didn't wan/love him, he wanted to live in a group home. Imagine his poor mother having to watch her son on TV be beaten to death by the people (cops) who are supposed to protect ALL CITIZENS.

Then there is random violence that happens all the time, and many of those killers (serial/child) who are caught not only don't show remorse, they can't: they are psychopaths.

The recent story I read in the paper that happened in a small rural area in Oregon led me to wonder if intervention with a mentally ill person at the earliest time they exhibited symptoms, could have prevented this and many, many other tragedies.

A 95 year old man and his 92 year old wife were found stabbed to death in their small cabin located outside of (small town name). Each received multiple stab wounds, and there was no sign of a forced break-in or an apparent robbery. It turns out there was a 25 year old man who was camping close by to where the couple lived. He goes into town the following day and tells his buddy that he found two demons living in the woods and he slaughtered them, saving everyone from their harm. His friend immediately called the police, the bodies were found and the young man was arrested and is undergoing a psychiatric evaluation.

First thing I thought of after reading the original story was what a shitty way to depart earth by making it all the way to your 90's and living a lovely life in your little cabin by the sea – and this scary guy comes in and stabs you with your own steak knives. At the same time, I couldn't help but wonder who this young man was and how this horrible crime came to be. Was he abused as a child? Was he or had he ever received mental health treatment in the past? And how can you confuse demons with 90 year old people? (I can't image, but others can and do).

Our world will never live up to my idealistic standards and I have to let go of my fantasies on a daily basis in order to muddle my way through my own corner of the world. I see so much joy in the world, as well as so much pain. I often wonder, does the joy outweigh the pain, or is it the other way around? I choose to believe that Joy wins out; even my own pain doesn't compare to many of the life stories I have either witnessed myself, or read/hear about.

Peace, Love and Healing to “The Lost Souls” – hope they find solace somehow.

Reply

12/06/2011 01:27 PM
cptblack
cptblack  
Posts: 12381
VIP Member

Thank you Julie for posting this. Yes there is stigma, misunderstanding and ignorance displayed about mental illness even in the 21st Century. Thank goodness my Bipolar is well controlled for now thru medication and changes in my lifestyle. and I manage my PTSD by avoiding obvious triggers and trying to train myself NOT to react physically. As little as 6 years ago I put someone in the hospital who thought it would be "Great fun!" to blow a football airhorn in my ear while I was looking for a 'phoney' leak in a water cooler.

It was not a fun experience for either of us. Him for the obvious reasons but me for the self-dirrected anger and shame of taking him out as a perceived threat. Luckily my Supervisor knew I was a PTSD survivor, (as did everyone I worked with), and told the police what had happened. The District Supervisor asked me if I wanted the guy fired! Of course I didn't.

I imagine in your town I would have been cuffed, stuffed in a car and booked into jail. Instead I was left to sit outside, supervised by an officer, smoking and trembling while my wife was notified, a police officer sat at our home to watch my sleeping 6 year old son and she was driven to the scene. She then drove me to the V. A. Hospital in my car with a police escort car for a 'Check Up'. I was then escorted home and they took my statement two days later. There was an eye-witness to the incident and he told the police the guy ignored his pleas not to do this and payed a price.

With more officers trained in dealing with the mentally ill a lot of these incidents could be handled better.

Post edited by: cptblack, at: 12/06/2011 01:30 PM


12/06/2011 04:27 PM
Bangbang
Bangbang  
Posts: 7157
VIP Member

I worked as a psych nurae with the criminally insane in a State Hospital for 23 years. I had worked with young adults and adults. Many were in for murder or a violent crime. I saw many that showed no remorse for their crime and displayed more violence in the hospital. These people do not wear signs. There are thousands of them walking the streets.When I got sick I had planned on killing my boss and an entire unit of patients.(44)I did get it togethjer enought to notify the authorities of what I planned to do. They took action and I got a medical retirement along with didsability from SS. I and my planned victims were lucky. I mention this because I realize how easy this happens in our society. I can remember going to a Pdoc when I was 18 for rage issues...his response was "join the armed forces". This was during the vietnam war. I don't think conditions have changed much from then and it is outragious.

12/06/2011 10:05 PM
Greytabby
Greytabby  
Posts: 2791
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

i once hit my husband.... i knocked him unconscious... he called me a lezbian because i said no sex till marriage... (we were engaged at the time)..i was manic and i am ashamed to say i snapped... he was furious when he came to... a pdoc said i was provoked... but i still feel that did not excuse me... nothing excuses harming another human except protecting yourself or someone else.... i was wrong to hit jeff... true he should not have called me that... but if everyone provoked to anger used that as an excuse... we would be neck deep in bodies... i applaud you bangbang for getting help... i want to stress... i agree 100% about the "stereotype stigma" put on the mentally ill... but beating a smart aleck up is just foolish... and wrong... and it is those people who cause others to mistreat and fear the mentally ill... it is hard... our minds are raging... and the pain is incredible... but being in pain and lashing out is what animals do.... we are not animals... we are created in God's image.... we need to act like it... the man who was kicked to death should have beem pepper sprayed or tazerd and put in a looney bin... the mother killing her kids had to be stopped... period... if i took a knife to my kimmy i hope they would stop me before i seriously harm her... i am not dissing the mentally ill... but violence is wrong... period!!!.. if a pyromaniac lites a bunch of buildings on fire in a display of arson... illness or no illness...she should be put away... until she learns to deal with being sick... if i found out i had cancer and killed a bunch of people... would i be excused? i hope not.... it has to stop... and saying i did this because i was ill is for the birds.... yes control is hard... by nature i dont swear... but ask arauna... sometimes i do when i let my guard down... in a mentally ill person we have to keep on guard contantly so as not to lose it...plus putting a vet who has tasted combat in a bad situation and not giving them proper care is ridiculous and leads to a lot of homeless vets and harmed people... i am a vet... as is my hubby... i also have a form of schizophrenia... and i will be honest and say the blame on this lies everywhere... we mentally ill need to stop using our illness as an excuse... i was raped by a red headed man.... that doesnt give me the right to kill or hate all red headed men.... but the authorities need to invest more in mental health care... and vets....etc... and people in general need to stop acting like all schizophrenics are ted bundys...in short we need all to do our part... i am not saying lock the mentally ill up... but nor should we use our illness as an excuse for violent behaviour...

i hope i havent offended anyone...

kat

Post edited by: Greytabby, at: 12/06/2011 10:39 PM


12/07/2011 04:00 AM
MsAspiring
MsAspiring  
Posts: 1610
Senior Member

I know for a fact that if it were not for my medication and God, I would more than likely murder someone. I have homicidal thoughts and also because Robert did it, I think I can do it to. I just want to say it is very scary to have homicidal thoughts and to know that you could actually take another persons life.

12/07/2011 05:27 AM
Greytabby
Greytabby  
Posts: 2791
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

i agree with you april... but you and i both know that mentally ill people are not the only ones who feel or think homicidal... i have had them too... but i controlled it....it took strength...but i knew my illness would not excuse me before God... so with His strength i controlled the rage... please dont be offended buddy...i mean no disrespect...

kat

Post edited by: Greytabby, at: 12/07/2011 05:28 AM


12/07/2011 05:39 AM
Greytabby
Greytabby  
Posts: 2791
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

i want to add that the illness can enhance the thought and feeling...but it cant make me pick up a weapon and kill a person... either the illness controls me... or well i do my best to be in charge... i cry... scream... pass out from the strain... or get sick to my stomach... i have hit people... i lost control because i let weakness take over....an innocent person is beyond valuble... we have to be strong.... april you are to be commended....not just for your strength but your willingness to work with God... Smile that takes strength beyond what is normal... it takes Gods strength.... and courage... the pain can be nearly unbearable...but well worth it.... it gives you a sense of dignity...

kat

Post edited by: Greytabby, at: 12/07/2011 05:40 AM


12/07/2011 08:27 AM
cptblack
cptblack  
Posts: 12381
VIP Member

I did not ATTACK this younger man. I went into a well trained DEFFENSIVEmode for an attack from the rear and did not even realize what had happened until I was standing over him. I do not even remember what I di, only what the eye witness said I did.

I was trained for four years and kept myself well trained for several more years in unarmed combat. I worked hard to stay in good physical condition and the training was part of that. It was a PTSD triggered reaction by a well trained combat artist and I hated myself for it. But if he had been a mugger with a gun it would have been much worse... for him!


12/07/2011 10:39 AM
JustJulie62
JustJulie62Posts: 925
Member

I just wish there were an easy answer to all of this. Sad So many people suffering....for many reasons.

12/07/2011 10:41 AM
Greytabby
Greytabby  
Posts: 2791
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

i didnt mean you attacked captain.... what happened to you was understandable... sorry i didnt clairify that.... i was manic all night.... no sleep... i was refering to those idiots that kill or maim and then claim innocence due to illness....the guy you hit had no business sneaking up on you....he was a bigger nut than we are... Laughing sorry if i upset you captain....

kat

Reply

Share this discussion with your friends:
<< Start < Prev 1 Next > End >>


Disclaimer: The information provided in MDJunction is not a replacement for medical diagnosis, treatment, or professional medical advice.
In case of EMERGENCY call 911 or 1.800.273.TALK (8255) to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Read more.
Contact Us | About Us
Copyright (c) 2006-2014 MDJunction.com All Rights Reserved