It’s 9/11/2015. On 9/11/2001, I was at work in Tulsa, OK at the church I attended. The pastor put a television in the lobby of the church as the Twin Towers were being destroyed by terrorists. I remember how stunned I was, not at what was happening at that moment, but by my own lack of emotion. And I questioned – why. Why was there no feeling inside of me for this crime against my country, for the deaths of over 3000 souls?
It took some time but I finally understood. It was because in my own personal life, residually, and in the life of my dear son, Jeff, for 10 years prior to 9/11, we had been experiencing our own kind of terrorism. This terrorism was committed against him by psychiatry and mental health courts by forcing him to take psychotropic ‘medications’ that he, literally, physically, could not tolerate because of their side effects. Side effects, such as akathisia and hyperthermia and others, that caused him so much pain that he was terrified of them and still is. So much terror that he would run away and try to survive on the street any way he could. It was, residually, against me because as a mother, it zaps the life out of you not knowing where your son is or how is he surviving.
This started happening in 1991, when he was first put in the mental health system. The running away and abruptly stopping the drugs prescribed by psychiatrists. Then he would either end back up in a hospital somewhere or coming back home; and, because he was in violation of a mental health court order to take the drugs and he wasn’t, and because he wasn’t, he would be in rebound withdrawal and/or severe detox, he would be acting so weird that he would be picked up and be rehospitalized again – and again – and again. Usually, the drugs and the dosages would be changed on each rehospitalization.
No, I do not believe that he was in decompensation, or he was just getting sick again as I was told. I believe that he was in detox because of stopping the drugs cold-turkey. We were told that he would have to stay on the drugs the rest of his life. That was not acceptable. It was always a dilemma. Why do some psychiatrists not know that these drugs cause dependence? This disbelief by a psychiatrist was presented to me in a treatment team meeting held regarding Jeff in 2011. She wanted proof that these drugs cause dependence.
It is my opinion that my son is brain damaged now. It is very dangerous to abruptly stop taking psychotropic medications. I don’t call them medications anymore. I call them drugs. I think of medications as helping. I think of drugs as hurting. I think he is brain damaged now because in 2007, after 16 years of this, he started verbally expressing fixed delusions or false memories.
It takes me a while to catch on. It is my firm belief that Jeff has been so brain damaged by drugs he has been forced to take since 1991, that I might never get my son back. What I had to do on Sunday, September 6, 2015, is tell Jeff that as long as he is at my home, that I would not go back there. No mother should ever have to tell her own son that. It’s too much of a heartbreak. He wants to be where I am. Every time he would run away from where he was, he would always end up back at my home, no matter where I was, or how cold it was outside. What does a mother do when her son knocks at her door at 2:30 a.m. and it’s 20 degrees outside? Out of deep love, a mother allows her son to come into her home. But there’s a catch. He refuses to leave. There is so much wrong now that even though she tries to let him stay, because of fixed delusions and false memories caused by the drugs he was forced to take, she can’t because there is abuse now, verbal, emotional, and the real possibility of physical abuse.
So, one Sunday while away from home, I called Jeff and told him to leave and to never come back. He told me to bring his bank debit card to him and he would. I did. He did. And while hitchhiking again, he was picked up by a Deputy Sheriff and taken, again, to a crisis stabilization unit, where he will, again, come to mental health court in an Oklahoma County and be committed, again, to a psychiatric hospital and be forced to take more drugs, again. Then, he will be deemed stabilized, again, and he will be discharged homeless. He has already called me and told me that he will return to the small city where I live and stay in the men’s shelter. What I know is that he will not stay at the shelter. He will not take the drugs he is prescribed and will be in detox of the drugs he was given while hospitalized. He will, again, appear at my door and want to come in – and he will want to stay. This forces me to file a Protective Order against my own son, my Jeff.
So – will I get to see my son again? Will I get to give him a Christmas gift again or share thanksgiving dinner with him again. Will our family ever get to be together again to celebrate a birthday? Will he be able to get housing anywhere again?
The mental health system has destroyed my Jeff’s life. It has residually destroyed my life. I am only one mother out of countless others whose son has been stolen from her by psychiatry and mental health courts. Jeff is only one son whose life has been destroyed by prescribed psychotropic drugs.. The mental health system must be changed. There is a dire need now for recovery homes, houses, units, farms, ranches, etc. for people whose lives have been stolen from then by psychiatry and the current medical model of psychiatric treatment. It destroys lives. It destroys families. It destroys hope.