Mother's story goes viral, prompting mental health debate - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Mother's story goes viral, prompting mental health debate

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Cody Tucker - email

"I live with a son who is mentally ill. I love my son. But he terrifies me."

The shocking images of the tragic shootings in Newtown, Conn., have compelled one mother to tell her story.

Now, that story has gone viral, prompting debate over the treatment of children with mental illness.

In a post on her blog, Anarchist Soccer Mom, the mother of 3 details the problems from which her oldest son struggles. 

She writes, "A few weeks ago, Michael pulled a knife and threatened to kill me and then himself after I asked him to return his overdue library books. His 7 and 9 year old siblings knew the safety plan—they ran to the car and locked the doors before I even asked them to."

It's just one of a few tragic, and terrifying stories told by the mother.

Michael is 13 years old.  She says at times he's a normal, though incredibly intelligent young man.  But in a second, he can turn violent with little notice.

The story has prompted heated, and at times graphic debate on the comments following her post. But her struggle to find diagnosis and cure is a rare look inside just one aspect of our mental health system.  If she wants to get anything done, one social worker told her the boy must first have a criminal record.

"No one wants to send a 13-year old genius who loves Harry Potter and his snuggle animal collection to jail," she writes. "But our society, with its stigma on mental illness and its broken healthcare system, does not provide us with other options."

Read her full story here.  We must warn you that the story, along with the comments below contains some graphic language. 

The site also includes opinions held only by the author of The Anarchist Soccer Mom .