Thursday, December 06, 2007

Why Mental Illness Treatment and Monitoring Matters...

I'm hearing about the shooting incident in Oklahoma involving a mentally unbalanced young man who had been thrown out of his home, fired from his job (Mc Donalds!) had his girlfriend break up with him who then stole his step fathers' AK47 & went on a killing spree in a mall, killing 8 & wounding 5 before turning the gun on himself. He left a note claiming to be sorry but ended it by saying "Now I will be Famous."

The Outer picture is of someone who Snapped (a la Michael Douglas in Falling Down) The Truth is Both Darker and more troubling. The Obvious signs that he was De Compensating were missed by everyone around him; folks who should have been Alert to the fact that he was Unable or Unwilling to help himself in even the most Basic ways. This was or should have been easily recognizable, given his history of Treatment for Suicidal ideation. Where were the folks who should have been looking out for this?

The whole area of treatment of the Mentally Ill is rife with stories of "be on the lookout for..." There has to be a better way to monitor those at risk, in order to Protect the Public And the Patient as well as not violate their Rights to Privacy. Be sure to look at the Investigation that will surely follow this Tragedy. It will be Enlightening (I Know I used Capital letters a Lot in this for Emphasis-men tend to do this more than women but I think it's Appropriate given the subject matter)


RaeJane said...

I blame the drugs.

I think we live in a time where someone can have full blown depression and slight depression and be given mood drugs.

I think those drugs aren't always right for us.
Course, I have no idea if this person was taking any sort of drug...

It was so sad to hear that story on the news.


WildbillthePirate said...

Te worst part is that no one monitors if you are taking that medication unless ordered by a court! This boy had medications prescribed to him but stopped taking them for the Most commonly heard reason: "I didn't like the way they made me feel."

RaeJane said...

I always think back to my cousin who, when he was 7, was put on riatalin (sp?).
His behavior did change but I'm not sure for the better.
One day he said that on the outside he felt all calm and asleep but inside his body felt all jittery.