Adam Lanza: Part 2
by Susan Resko, The Balanced Mind Parent Network Executive Director
My blog post earlier today touched at the heart of what we, as parents of children with mental illness, struggle with and fear the most. Some parents read my comments as blaming Adam Lanza's mother, or blaming parents of mentally ill children if their child did not improve with treatment. I regret that anyone read my comments that way. On the contrary, I know all too well how difficult it is to raise a child with mental illness. I know that things do not always get better, even with the best of intentions and interventions. I also regret that my message of hope about my own son was akin to pouring salt on an open wound to some whose children who have not gotten better. Again, that was not my intention, and I apologize to those who were hurt.
Some children never get better. That is the sad truth. But, many do, and there is hope. My heart grieves for both the victims and the family of Adam Lanza. I read about children every day who do not improve with treatment, and I lived it for a majority of my own son's life. This is why I work to advocate for these very children.
We have a lot of work to do to improve funding for treatment, destigmatize mental illness and support those families who live with these devistating illnesses each and every day. If nothing else, I hope that this tragedy will help rally support for our children. Its time that we stop blaming parents and blaming medications. Its time we take action on behalf of our children. We need more funding for support, outreach and treatment. Every parent should be educated and informed about the signs and symptoms of mental illness. They should have access to treatment, just as if their child had cancer, diabetes or other life threatening illnesses. We need to end the blame game and start taking mental illness in children seriously.