Monday, December 17, 2012

The Only Survivor Of Her First Grade Class

59 comments:

sma$h said...

I can't stop reading updates on this tragedy...it hurts my heart. I don't understand what is wrong with people and it makes me hesitate on whether or not I should bring children into this world one day :/

Harvey Manfrenjensen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SusanB said...

I am concerned that this will make things worse for people (especially kids) with mental illnesses, including autism. It's my understanding (I don't have kids so I might be wrong) that schools attempt to mainstream kids with autism as much as possible - is it possible that now "normal" kids will be afraid of kids with autism or other mental illnesses? Will a "normal" child confuse a learning disability with a mental illness? This may change a lot of dynamics in schools as to how kids get along, etc.

Nellie said...

@ Harvey- what??? Where are you gettung this info??

nancer said...

mom was asleep. she never knew what was happening.
AND, let's say he DID have autism, asperger's, whatever. that does NOT mean he didn't have other mental issues. those kids can also develop major mental illnesses, just like anybody else. that's what i think was the case here.
what i want to know is what kind of HELP she was getting for him, besides her own.

Tuxedo Cat said...

This crazy mother was apparently showing off her latest guns to visitors...I heard that she was a Survivalist. Maybe she believed that the end of the world was coming and talked this way in front of her children. We have to be so careful what we say to them, especially the troubled ones. If they can't interpret life accurately it is our responsibility as parents to help them with that.

Nellie said...

This article talks about the mental health help available to families of angry children who will turn into angry adults. It was a really helpful read. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/2012/12/16/i-am-adam-lanzas-mother-mental-illness-conversation_n_2311009.html

rejectedcarebear said...

I hugged my 7yr old nephew so much yesterday, he asked me to stop. He said he feels so bad for the families and students, they have to spend the holidays without their loved ones. I hope he has teachers like the ones at Sandy Hook. True heroes.

SusanB said...

@nellie - I saw this on NBC last night and read the story. However, this morning I found this entry which I found a little disturbing: http://sarahkendzior.com/2012/12/16/a-brief-response-on-liza-long/

I honestly don't know what to believe but either way, the struggles these parents go through with their kids is heartbreaking. This country has got to figure out a way to help the mentally disabled to protect them from themselves and protect others.

Harvey Manfrenjensen said...

What info are you asking about Nellie?

ReesesPeace said...

Those poor, poor babies.

My heart is still raw and bruised. I haven't slept much. I don't have TV, so haven't seen the coverage and I'm so glad I don't have TV.

RIP sweet beautiful babies.

LottaColada said...

@sma$h, I feel exactly the same way.

Harvey Manfrenjensen said...

Some good resources for you CDANers: the first one is a long report, skid ahead to case studies, the sixth topic down: Talks about high functioning Aspergers people having no regret/no empathy in murdering innocents and family members due to the mental and emotional disabilities associated with Aspergers:

http://www.jaapl.org/content/34/3/374.full


http://www.teenagerswithaspergers.com/Teenagers_With_Aspergers/What_is_it.html


http://www.livestrong.com/article/187825-how-to-discipline-a-child-who-shows-no-remorse/

Agent**It said...

Susan, thanks for that f/up. Comments there are also interesting. Still absorbing it.

kelgela2 said...

I stopped reading the updates. It's too sad to keep going back and re-reading.

Mamaroni said...

Having no regret doesn't Leto one from being convicted, having aspergers alone does not mean you don't have three capacity to understand right from wrong our to understand you are hurting someone, do your legal conclusions to these studies are a little off

Harvey Manfrenjensen said...

I deleted my earlier comment because I didn't know that the Mom was killed in her sleep. She's the one I am mad at. She was a school teacher, she should have known better. I do blame her for this, it's not appropriate to be instilling that much gun fascination/love in someone that has Aspergers. How was she to know? She couldn't have. But without her arming their household to the teeth and teaching him, he wouldn't have known or been able to do this. Not all Asperger's or autism spectrum people are mass murderers, or violent it's just that it's inappropriate to have given him so much training and access.

Cathy said...

@Harvey - I predict that you'll soon be changing your username AGAIN once people call you out for your generalizations AGAIN. Maybe go back to Carmelits Lady? Or that Karma something-or-other?

Call me yndy... said...

Please think about it. It's the people who are horrified by violence, would go to great lengths to make sure their own children aren't a danger to themselves or others, and who truly care that should be having children. Parenting by accident, afterthought, or cultural expectation leads to things like this.
I remind myself a lot right now the Jessica Ridgeway case who turned in her son. Parents should be aware when their own children are potential killers.

Call me yndy... said...

Please think about it. It's the people who are horrified by violence, would go to great lengths to make sure their own children aren't a danger to themselves or others, and who truly care that should be having children. Parenting by accident, afterthought, or cultural expectation leads to things like this.
I remind myself a lot right now the Jessica Ridgeway case who turned in her son. Parents should be aware when their own children are potential killers.

jax said...

Harvey whoever you are...stop spreading false information. The mother was not a teacher, she home schooled him AND asperger's does not mean they are violent, only that they are without compassion and empathy.

Spend some time on the net READING it instead of spreading misinformation.

jme said...

she was not a school teacher.

Cathy said...

@jax - harvey is the most recent incarnation of a poster, who last changed their name after you called them out for a comment they made about whether someone had a "gay face"

katsm0711 said...

Thanks @jax n @jme I was just typing that and the app crashed. She was well liked, kind and respected. This guy is annoying I hope nobody feeds him bc nothing is more annoying than deleted comments (unless it's a double post and it's long)

katsm0711 said...

Wow that's funny @cathy who does that?

KPeony said...

I agree that the mother should be blamed. You don't put a person with questionable sanity in a situation where guns and violence are glorified. She worked with kids and should have known better.

AndyCane said...

There is no connection between planned, violent behavior and an autism spectrum diagnosis of any kind.
Autism is not a mental illness; it is a developmental disability. Many autistic people may have emotional regulation problems, which are impulsive expressions of frustration and anger, that are immediate and disorganized. They may lash out with threatening statements or behaviors, but these behaviors are impulsive reactions, they are not deliberate or organized plans. Once the situation has been diffused, the behaviors will stop. What happened in Connecticut required methodical planning of a deliberate and tremendously violent act; this is not typical behavior of an autistic person.
Right now we are all struggling to find a reason why this kind of atrocity would happen, and we can speculate about the mental state of the shooter; about gun control laws; about the current state of our country’s mental health system, or about whatever else that might help us make some sense out of this. Please know, and please tell your children, that even if the shooter wasautistic, autism is not the explanation for this tragedy.

katsm0711 said...

Please, we don't know where the mom stored the guns, how they were locked up, or what exactly happened yet. I'm not saying don't blame the mom but please wait until you know exactly what happened. I haven't put the news on yet today so I'm writing this without knowing new developments, but please don't jump to conclusions. It's so horrible. Last I heard we don't even know if the killer had other mental disorders besides autism. The first funeral is today for 6 year old Noah.

Onyx Loathes Hydrangeas said...

Thank you for that AndyCane, and the other voices of reason commenting in this post. Lets ignore the trolls.

JSierra said...

Yada yada yada everyone is too blame, everyone did something wrong, guns are horrible we need to eliminate them, lets give elementary school teachers assault rifels in their classrooms, the mother is a wench for teaching her sons how to properly handle and respect the guns in her house, he had aspergers so he was a violent, souless killer.

SHUT UP. 20 children were massacred and 6 adults lost their lives trying to protect those children. We can never bring them back, yet Adam Lanza will be remembered and revived every single day for the next couple of years. Let's remember the kids and forget Adam. LEt's remember what beautiful souls they were and how much they had to give versus what Adam took away.

Focusing on blame and motive takes the spotlight off the victims and creates one out of the attacker. We owe it to those kids to be better people, we are all for some reason given an opportunity that was snatched violently away from them. I don't know about you, but I don't want to waste this life remember those inflicted violence and pain. I want to remember the ones who took that violence and pain so that others didn't have too.

Patty said...

@jsierra, Thank You! They were just babies. I can't face anymore stories about them. My heart breaks more with every new piece of news. I almost lost it in church yesterday when the priest pointed out the candles, one for each victim and asked us to pray for them and the families.

ButterKwup said...

I work at a residential treatment school and facility that houses 70 kids dealing with autism, Aspberger's, are bi-polar or have been raped and molested and abandoned. It's physically and mentally exhausting and it gets very easy to point fingers and parents and get angry, but at the end of the day it accomplishes nothing but possibly making yourself feel better. And right now, I think I am not the one who needs the most comfort.


The address for the school is:
Sandy Hook Elementary School
12 Dickenson Drive
Sandy Hook, CT, 06482

JSierra said...

Well said @Butterkwup. If we, who are for the most part not directly effected to the incident, are this beat up and emotional about what happened I Cannot imagine what the families who lost loved ones and friends must feel like.

urban chaos said...

A great movement to start today is 26 acts.
Starting today get out into the community and be a source of light by honouring these innocents and heroes by performing acts of kindness.

We cannot change the past but we can make today better for someone else by showing the good in ourselves and paying it forward.

Momster said...

(I had originally posted this at the very end of the Sandy Hook thread on Saturday, but I think few of ya'll have seen it)

Before the Sandy Hook tragedy happened, early Friday morning an 18-year old man was arrested in my town, on charges that he was planning to barricade students in the high school auditorium, chain the doors shut, and shoot everyone. Luckily he told some friends, who reported it to police, and he's being held on $1 million bond.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/15/sammie-eaglebear-chavez_n_2307864.html

This was my youngest son's high school, he's a senior. . .Turns out the guy had acquired a gun and was doing research on the Columbine incident.

I spent Friday night with a stomach virus, hugging the porcelain god so to speak (lol) and all I could picture was my kid in that auditorium, or the tragedy in Connecticut.

God bless the children, and the heroic adults that tried to save them. And thank you, thank you to the teenagers who reported Chavez to local police.

E Gee Be said...

Momster, how scary for your family! I am proud of the person who spoke up and averted another crisis.

Silly Girl said...

@Momster, that's a terrible story, but I'm glad everyone is OK. There is a happy ending to this one, so to speak. The people he told did the right thing, I hope they are recognized for it!
I, for one, am tired of hearing everyone blame everyone else for all of this. 20 years ago, we'd have been blaming the Dad for leaving the Mom or for something equally as 'blameless'. I'm sad for the families and communities this tragedy touched, and for the loss of innocence. I'm tired of hearing people guess, or state as fact, so much incorrect information. I feel for the brother, Ryan, who spent Friday telling the world it wasn't him. Someone even posted the link to his FB page on here. Sad for everyone involved. If we, as parents, did our part (yes, I'm a parent, too), eyes and ears open, communicate with our children, KNOW what's going on with them, we can prevent, hopefully, this from happening again. Or at least to the magnitude of this tragedy.
God bless those babies, and their protectors.

CrazyCatLady said...

First...mental illness and autism do not go hand in hand. Many people with the mental illnesses everyone is aware if (schizophrenia, bi-polar, etc) do not show signs/symptoms until their early 20s. Very rare for a child to show signs, but it can happen and these kids are usually home schooled or are in mental facilities.

Second...autism has a wide spectrum on which to gauge kids. Aspergers (which is believed to be what Lanza had) is one of the most mild forms. Kids are very intelligent but lack "social skills"...I.e. its not OK to tell a stranger she's fat. The asperger child is making a legitimate observation but doesn't understand the social politeness to not say it out loud.

Lastly, I think kids can be very amazing with their ability to accept people. If they decide to be afraid of mental/behavior illnesses, its because they learned it from a parent.

Tuxedo Cat said...

Praying and hoping that some peace will settle on this poor stricken community.

People express their anger and concern in different ways and at different times.

People who are trying to analyze what happened are just trying to help so that it doesn't keep happening. That is no more or less valid than anyone else's feelings.

Sorry for not passing by all you experts first, but I have read that the mother collected guns, and that she had shown a visiting neighbour an automatic weapon that she had purchased.

And don't start squawking that I'm anti-gun. I have them myself - I do target shooting from time to time.

My point is only that if parents paid more attention to what their kids were doing, it would probably short-circuit a lot of shootings.

CrazyCatLady said...

Excellent article and shows just how frustrating it is to get help. Mental illness has GOT to get more attention and people need to know where to go for help. I'm so sick of mental illness being a deep dark secret. Its OK yo be an addict, we'll get you help, it have an eating disorder, but having bipolar or schizophrenia....well we just won't talk about it. AND, if you do get help the meds are outrageous! If I didn't have personal insurance, I'd be paying $1000+ out of pocket for my bipolar meds. Ridiculous.

CrazyCatLady said...

Thank you! Now I don't have to post the same thing!!

__-__=__ said...

Those poor babies. Lots of questionable stuff in comments here. Do your own research. Verify and re-verify until you understand and check your sources. There are reputable sources ready to confirm or deny any thoughts you may have on mental illness and it's consequences.

I think it would help if people were better informed. The presentation of mental illness as personality diversity needs to stop. Mainstreaming those who need special attention is not working. And, as always, some personal responsibility would also help. Other countries arm their teachers so this doesn't happen. Stop preventing people from protecting themselves. We have air Marshall's on planes now.

tracynator said...

My 15 year old son has Asperger's. He does not lack compassion or empathy. He does not have a mental illness. He is not capable of committing murder. The ignorance shown by some of the commenters in this thread is appalling. Worse is the obvious agenda by a certain commenter to try to make the murder of 20 beautiful children a slam against ASD. People on the spectrum are very complicated. There are many comorbid conditions that develop over time like depression, OCD, ADHD, anxiety disorders, the list goes on. Each individual on the Autism Spectrum is very, very different as I have learned. Don't get your information from some idiot commenter off the internet or a celebrity with a book to peddle. Please do your own research with an open heart and an open mind. My son should be given a chance.

tracynator said...

My 15 year old son has Asperger's. He does not lack compassion or empathy. He does not have a mental illness. He is not capable of committing murder. The ignorance shown by some of the commenters in this thread is appalling. Worse is the obvious agenda by a certain commenter to try to make the murder of 20 beautiful children a slam against ASD. People on the spectrum are very complicated. There are many comorbid conditions that develop over time like depression, OCD, ADHD, anxiety disorders, the list goes on. Each individual on the Autism Spectrum is very, very different as I have learned. Don't get your information from some idiot commenter off the internet or a celebrity with a book to peddle. Please do your own research with an open heart and an open mind. My son should be given a chance.

ReesesPeace said...

@Tracynator: Thank you!!

peachykeen said...

@Traceynator

Thank you! My 4 year old daughter is aspergers and it scares me that people are putting ASD kids into one single box and trying to say they are all capable of what he did :(( My little girl is beautiful and a loving little soul and she doesn't deserve to grow up with people holding that opinion of her.Not all autistic people are the same just like all neuro typical people are not the same.

Sunny said...

@Butterkwup

First of all, thank you for what you do. When I was younger, I wanted to be a counselor specializing in abused children, but I learned early on I wasn't strong enough for it. You are a light in this world, and in my humble opinion, a warrior

Your situation reminded me of an article that Frufa linked to. It can be tough to read, but helped me to feel hopeful toward the end

http://www.chicagonow.com/moms-who-drink-and-swear/2012/12/let-there-be-light-and-helpers/

ButterKwup said...

Thanks for the kind words and the link @ Sunny!

ButterKwup said...

And now after reading the link, which was like reading my own freaking memories, I need to add on:

Yes, it's extremely difficult and taxing. Watching (in my case) small children suffer through all kinds of problems, some from mental illness and some borne of family problems, doesn't get easier and people at our facility either crap out in six months or stay until they retire. But watching them get excited for birthdays or a new bike or their Halloween costume makes it all worth it. At the end of the day, they're still kids who need a hug and a story to get them to sleep at the end of the day.

Einstein DeGeneres said...

OMG. Did you know that white people have bigger brains than black people and that Jews run all the corporations? A bigot is a bigot is a bigot.

Aspergers and violence do NOT go hand in hand. People with Aspergers or who are on the Autism Spectrum may or may not lack compassion and empathy, depending on the person but that doesn't mean they KILL PEOPLE. Shit - stop posting bullshit.

And you who wrote "normal" in quotation marks - once you use those 12 effing times, it means you don't believe they belong there. You really do think some people are normal and some are not.

Those of you who think Aspergers or Autism had anything to do with the attack are bigots. True story.

lutefisk said...

Asperger's is a neurological disorder. It is not a mental illness. The shooter was mentally ill, but Asperger's was not the cause of this. Here is a list of people most likely who had Asperger's:
Albert Einstein
Isaac Newton
Benjamin Franklin
Napoleon Bonaparte
George Washington
John Quincy Adams
Andrew Jackson
Andrew Johnson
Abraham Lincoln
James Garfield
Teddy Roosevelt
William Taft
Louis IV
Catherine the Great
Cleopatra
Peter the Great
Wilhem II
Alexander the Great
Leonardo da Vinci
Vincent van Gogh
Beethoven
Elvis
Jeremy Bentham
Socrates
Henry Ford
Bill Gates
Tom Hanks
Marilyn Monroe
Clark Gable
Dan Ackroyd
Craig Nicholls.
Daryl Hannah
Virginia Woolf
Shakespeare
Goethe
Isaac Asimov
Ernest Vincent Wright
Charles Dickinson

lutefisk said...

Sadly, I had a friend call me this morning crying hysterically crying. She saw her own son in the description of the shooter. He has many similar traits, doesn't socialize, and sits in his room playing violent video games. Also 20 years old. She has taken him to many doctors and therapists over the years and no one has ever been able to diagnose his condition, but he is on many, many anti-depressants that seem to help him. Even sadder, I immediately thought of him after the shootings were reported.

katsm0711 said...

Connecticut Post
The Newtown Post Office has created a postal box for people to send care packages, condolences and letters.

That address is:
Messages of Condolence for Newtown
P.O. Box 3700
Newtown, Connecticut 06470

misspoppypants said...

She was never a school teacher. She worked in finance.

misspoppypants said...

She was never a school teacher. She worked in finance.

Anna said...

I more than doubt this kid had Asperger's - my compassionate, kind, talk-your-ear-off nephew has Asperger's.

I fully believe Adam Lanza's mom lied to everyone (maybe even herself?) this was his diagnosis rather than tell the truth, which is schizo-effective disorder, which is packaged with insensitivity to physical pain, which was one of Adam's issues.

This very serious diagnosis would be more off-putting to friends and educators, since public schools that mainstream autism might balk at schizo-effective disorder, and likely did at some point. But as an exhausted mom with a marriage breaking up, she needed that kid in school to give herself a few hours' break from him. So she called it Asperger's or latched on to this early guess of diagnosis rather than proceed with a more serious diagnosis. Look at that kids eyes in the tech club. That's not Asperger's.

Most Asperger's kids are animated, which differentiates them from the other spectrum of autism, and are not mute or emotionally blunt. If an Asperger's kid gets a splinter, that kid is going to howl, then research how wood splits and why for the next three days.

Silly Girl said...

Or, we can continue to guess what was going on, but we'll never know the truth. And I mean the actual truth. HIPAA will prevent us from knowing an actual diagnosis, if there ever was one. Autism and/or Asberger's is NOT mental illness. We are guessing at all the rest. Autism and/or Asberger's didn't make him a violent person.
Bottom line, we are looking for answers, and with the advent of social media at our disposal, we think we can collectively arm chair quarterback a diagnosis so it all fits nicely into a package we can explain to make ourselves feel better. Not going to happen. People do bad things. That's life. We can protect ourselves as much as possible, and try to get help for those who we think need it, but bottom line, shit happens. We are, as a society, trying to rationalize WHY this happened. We can't. We need to accept it and deal with it.
For the record, I'm a parent, I work with people on a daily basis. Some disturbed, some not. I support mental health programs and the right to carry a firearm (along with that comes the proper paperwork, background checks, and documentation). I don't support assault rifles or the like, nor do I support buying them on the black market or by any other illegal means.
It breaks my heart, what happened in CT, OR, CO, AL, OH, you name the state/situation, it just breaks my heart. I'm not immune to the tragedy, I just think we need to stop looking for the elusive 'why?'.

katsm0711 said...

@silly I never saw worse, more unconfirmed reports in my life than for the Newtown tragedy. I can't believe the incorrect info people are spreading bc of course we trust what's on the news, me included! I stopped watching tv only reading an article here n there. I'm thinking of driving over to Newtown bc it's the only way I can grasp what happened. As far as details I'm waiting until the examiners are finished piecing it all together. The speculation just drives me mad.

Silly Girl said...

It IS sad, @katsm! My son just asked us last night if we know anything else yet. He's 9. I explained the shooter was dead and that's about all we'll ever know for sure. But that he's safe, etc. As for the rest of it, it drives me crazy. I've logged off my FB because the ignorance is flying and these are my FRIENDS!! I have to disconnect. It's the only way to stay sane through all the misinformation. I come here for the gossip, so I'll keep coming here, but it's really frustrating to hear all this wrong stuff. I'll wait for a well written article, once all the reports are in and everything is confirmed.