Monday, April 20, 2009

Tragedy update

If you missed the last post, the tragedy was one of those incredibly horrific murder-suicides, a man who killed his wife & 3 small children, and then himself. Friends of my brother and sister-in-law.

I finally talked with my SIL. The slain woman was a close friend. They were in a moms' group together; where she says in her last blog post, "I volunteered to serve on the board of my Moms Club," that's my SIL's position she was going to take over. They saw each other every day, and of course their kids were friends, too. My 6-year-old nephew took it harder, even though my 4-year-old niece was the one whose preschool class one of the little boys was in, but he has calmed down. They are much too young to understand.

I guess they went (at least my SIL and maybe my brother, but not the kids) to the Woods' parish church yesterday, and at first she was angry that they were praying for the father along with the rest of the family, but I am glad to hear that she came around to compassion for him, too. She hopes they are all in Heaven together -- he healed of his madness, the kids with their beloved father, Francie with her beloved (at least once upon a time?) husband.

He had bipolar disorder and had recently switched to a new medication. His job required him to travel during the week, so I guess warning signs would have been very easy to miss. He killed them the night he came home from his last trip. I have always heard that anti-psychotic meds are horrible, even totally non-functioning schizophrenics often prefer to live on the streets of D.C., getting robbed or locked up periodically for scary behavior, self-medicating on all kinds of street drugs and alcohol. Even if newer anti-psychotics are much better, not every drug works for every person. Might he have decided the meds were worse than the mania? My step-aunt has bipolar disorder, and she has always opted to medicate the hell out of the mania, even if it meant spending a lot of time depressed. Mania was terrifying, unbearable. I guess! how terrifying to know that this demon could drive a person to such an awful, bloody crime?

GOD, please have mercy on this poor, sick man, and on all of us who suffer from various mental illnesses, and from the family and friends, coworkers and neighbors, who suffer second-hand from our mental illnesses.

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