Since Friday afternoon when I heard the news of the Connecticut shooting, my mind hasn’t been on much anything else. I am having a hard time with day to day activities and honestly can’t comprehend what happened. The thoughts go through my mind “What if it were my kids’ school?” “What if someone does this locally next?” I’m sure a lot of parents are asking the same questions.
All the children were 6 and 7 years old…Jaylin is 6 and Jeffery is 7. First graders, Jaylin’s grade. I have been praying for the families of everyone involved in the tragedy, even those who survived because they have a long road ahead of them as well.
One question going through my mind after I read a post “Thinking the Unthinkable” was “What if in a few years this is Jeffery?” If you have been reading my blog you have read that I’ve been fighting for a diagnosis, help, support…anything to comprehend what is going on in my 7 year old’s head. What I haven’t posted yet was that I got one step closer, we had our CDC (Child Development Clinic) results. The first diagnosis out of her mouth was Depression. Now most will say (and I’ve heard these multiple times since getting these results) “He’s so happy. How can they say he’s depressed?” “He’s too young to be depressed.” “You and Jeff need to spend more time with him, he’s not depressed he just needs more time with you.” I want to scream at everyone who says any of those things. I suffer from depression…do you know how many of those people who say those things don’t know that?!?!? As I sat through a meeting with the CDC to get the results she explained to me that Jeffery’s depression is coming out as anger. He don’t understand how to process his feelings and so he gets violent. Remember I got these results about 2-3 weeks ago and one thing she said to me and now it’s hitting me harder is “If something isn’t done…he’s going to end up in the court system.” I have been fighting to get help since I noticed a change in him at 3 years old…so I’ve been fighting this fight for over 4 years!
Every doctor, psychiatrist, specialist, therapist has been told of MY history. My fears for him. His problems. I was told over and over that he’s a boy, he’s a toddler, he’s a kid….you name the excuse and I was given it. It was even implied that *I* was the problem. I went to parenting classes, I have read the material needed, I have talked to many people and I have three other children at home and none of them are acting the way he does.
The one psychiatrist finally prescribed him medicine for ADHD even though he didn’t think he had that, his words were “He has the HD part but not the AD part”. I feel that he only prescribed him a medicine to shut me up. I was (and still am) at my wits end. The medicine he prescribed has done nothing but make Jeffery more sleepy and when he’s tired (he don’t get naps in school) he gets angry and the tantrums happen. He already hits, kicks and throws things at us…I don’t want to think of the day when he tries something more violent. We don’t have guns in our house but as every other kitchen in the world, we have knives.
Like that blog post, this isn’t about guns. There needs to be talk about how to help those who have mental illnesses. I would travel to the ends of the world to get help for my son…only I’m being met by a lot of people who either don’t want to help because he’s “so young” or don’t know how to help. Heck, I’m not satisfied with the depression diagnosis honestly. His moods switch INSTANTLY and without notice or sometimes without a trigger. He has scared his teacher and TDT (therapeutic day treatment) counselor in school with his outbursts, yet they have seen him be kind, and sweet and know he’s brilliant. At least now in my fight for help for him I have people outside me and Jeff who have SEEN his tantrums, his mood swings and KNOW he has something else going on.
I don’t want my son to end up in jail/prison, on the news, or dead. I want to get him help. Because right now he’s only 7 and he will grow up…mature…get smarter…I just hope he don’t get more dangerous. I want him to get help…I’m doing what I can but my resources are limited and I’ve been to just about every hospital and doctor around here. I’m waiting on a call to get in to see a new psychiatrist…fingers crossed he helps.
My thoughts and prayers will be with everyone in Newtown CT for the rest of my life. I can’t imagine the parents who had to go home and see gifts under the tree (or hidden in closets) that won’t be opened on Christmas morning, not ever hugging their children again, to never tuck them in again…it’s heartbreaking. My life is forever changed because of this…for more than one reason.