|Start new day with a strong heart.|
I can't help but continue to believe that the values I once thought were guiding principles that public institutions rely upon, are still important; I am saddened to not have evidence these principles are valued today in actual practice. My continued belief in the importance of the ethical principles of Justice are borne from my desperate hopes for my son's safety and recovery. I will do everything in my power to protect him from further harm, and to sustain my belief that there will come a day he will be safe from further harm being inflicted by the systems that have harmed him so very badly already.
My connection to my children is all I have that is real and true.
It is what it is. There are no words that can accurately describe my visceral pain or explain the intellectual dissonance that permeate the events my family has had to withstand. What was done to my little boy to "treat" his emotional and behavioral difficulties have caused so much harm to him; to all of us. It is impossible to escape the negative effects of his (mis)treatment on all of us; much less, it is impossible to justify the unethical and even illegal means that were used with impunity. The Real Word Outcome for my son from the "mental health treatment" provided by Washington State's Child Welfare and mental health systems resulted in profound iatrogenic disability.
My son's "best interests" were never a primary focus; or even considered, his needs were callously ignored.
It is hard for me to breathe sometimes remembering. It is even harder when I am confronted with the reality that 'mental health treatment' still consists only of the drugs that caused my son his profound iatrogenic injuries---Psychiatry's reliance on the neuro-biological disease hypothesis makes a mockery of ethical medical practice. For my son, this "treatment" has been, and continues to be, ineffective and harmful.
An adverse effect of a drug's mechanism of action is NOT a "side-effect." The direct adverse effects from psychotropic drugs are rarely, if ever, given the consideration necessary to realistically, or ethically assess whether the possible benefits outweigh the potential disabling, fatal risks. In Psychiatry, a primary measure of treatment effectiveness is treatment compliance; outcome is a secondary measure. If psychiatry were practiced ethically, a patient's real world outcome would be paramount.
When my son feels threatened in any way, he retreats inside himself; into his safe place. It is how he survived what were horrific conditions. I am clear in my understanding of why he does this. It's how he coped and how he continues to cope; it serves the purpose of granting him a feeling of safety--He tells me it is how he 'works things out.' He first started using this coping strategy when he came to the realization that he had been betrayed, and that those who were supposed to be helping him were not listening to, or helping him; but simply continuing to drug him in a maniacal attempt to prevent symptoms. No mental health professional ever addressed my son's initial trauma; every one I asked refused to even try. Mental health professionals then refused to believe their lack of compassion and respect coupled with the direct adverse effects of psychotropic drugs only compounded the harm and inflicted additional trauma on my precious son. His symptoms of anger and aggression were a reaction to what he believed were threats to his life. What my son perceived as threats, may not have been actual lethal threats, but to my son, with severe PTSD, they were lethal threats. Naturally, he fought as if he were fighting for his life---in his mind he was. It is well established that severe early childhood trauma alters how young children's brains process information; mental health professionals consistently refused to help process the initial trauma that caused his PTSD. By misinterpreting my son's anger and aggression, they in effect, blamed a victim for his injuries. Ultimately, my son came to believe that the "only safe place left" for him to be was inside his own head shortly after going to Child Study and Treatment Center in October of 2000.
He wasn't safe, he wasn't respected, or protected; he was used and abused. In effect, he was traumatized and tortured--these are the words he used to describe being at Child Study and Treatment Center to me; and that's what it looked like was happening to me. I have no difficulty believing Isaac when he shares what it felt like for him. I am outraged that these experiences are, and have always been, consistently unrecognized by mental health professionals as traumatic experiences. He was there to get help. All of us were betrayed from the beginning---ultimately, what we had been led to believe, and what in reality happened, is totally incongruous; irreconcilable and unacknowledged for the harm it caused all of us. As Isaac has said, "The people who were supposed to be helping me, had no compassion for me." CSTC was not a safe place, it was not even a therapeutic place. CSTC is in fact licensed as a research facility; it is not a hospital, as I had been led to believe. The four plus years he spent in that place are a blur of devastating inhumane treatment that he does not want to think about or remember---I can't say that I blame him. It was a place to survive, and Isaac survived.
I'm a witness, with overwhelming grief and loss that is always with me. I am haunted by the abject terror I felt when I realized I'd been betrayed, and effectively stripped of my parental rights to protect my son and to provide parental consent for his treatment. From the beginning, I was repeatedly told I had no say in any medical decisions on behalf of my son by Jon McClellan, the unethical federally funded psychiatric researcher who is still Medical Director of the State of Washington's only psychiatric research facility for children. Allowed only to bear witness to the trauma that McClellan ruthlessly inflicted upon my precious son; the memories still manage to take the wind out of me...
Events that all but obliterated my confidence in my fellow man, thankfully did not rob me of my family. We have been blessed; we have survived intact as a family; it is a testimony to the unbreakable bonds forged by the profound love we have for one another. Isaac has told his brother and I that it is because we know what happened to him, and have confidence in him, that he can recover. This simple statement is a testimony of the innate need we human beings have to be connected to people who love and accept us unconditionally. It is also evidence of Isaac's profound insight. I know having this fundamental need fulfilled is critical to his well-being. I'm a MadMother humbled by these events, and humbled by both of my sons' utter confidence in me. Their confidence is a testament of the power of a mother's love for her children. I hold onto hope with a tenacity that is borne out of my profound love for my sons. Isaac suffered horribly and sustained profound disabling iatrogenic injuries. I nurture my hope, so I that I may sustain Isaac's hopes when he feels discouraged and afraid. It is an honor. It is a bittersweet privilege. I sustain hope in order to validate the confidence both my sons have in me.
I am a witness, I am MadMother still haunted from having borne witness when my beloved son was traumatized and disabled by the teratogens mental health experts called "necessary medical treatment."
Without hope, I am a only a MadMother crushed by a cruel truth:
I didn't rescue my son nearly soon enough.
And now these three things remain: faith, hope and love.
But the greatest of these is love.
But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13"all that I have that is real and true" first posted August 22, 2011 rewritten and reposted in April 2013