Comments about ‘'I am Adam Lanza's mother': Writer says it's time to talk about mental illness’

Return to article »

Published: Monday, Dec. 17 2012 12:00 a.m. MST

  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Ogden, UT

"They may get access to a gun, but it wont be my gun."

If you leave it in the safe and never get it out, I'd say you'd be right. In which case why have a gun in the first place?

It's easy to leave a gun unattended for a few moments. That's all it might take.

I know a guy who was headed out the door to go hunting. He had to go potty before he left for the forest so he set his gun down on the couch for a few seconds. His very young son went over to it to investigate and in the process accidentally pulled the trigger. Bang! The bullet went through the couch, wall, and lodged in the fence outside. Luckily no one was hurt.

The gun is always locked tight in a safe while not in use.

Bob Pomeroy
Bisbee, AZ

In the county I live in, you practically have to commit a crime to get help, and since 'counsellors' are not licensed by the state, what they get is anyone's guess. I got more help in AA than from most counsellors i've seen. Having said that, we've got to go with what we've got. essentially, not much of a delivery system --. what i'm trying to say is that since gun control will be so divisive, there's a better chance of getting 'something' by building and funding mental health delivery -- publicly and privately. It's multiple apollo 13 on steroids and we have a problem. Mostly what we need is to remember how to give a helping hand. distrust and antagonism have become our most important product.

Bob Pomeroy
Bisbee, AZ

to hostage in sandy. a generation or more ago, in the context of generations of abuse and maltreatment, the courts began asserting constitutional protections for institutionalized person, gazillions were set free and entry requirements skyrocketed. These rules are very dysfunctional, but people have rights. it might work better were there were delivery/monitoring facilities available, and mental health is not a preferred budget item, but I think it would be a public good -- something we all would benefit from. Since people kill people, etc., what else can we do implement mental health standards. we've seen demonstrated that there's a problem. talk it up. we're the people. this shouldn't be a partisan impaired effort.

Give Me A Break
Pullman, WA

The common thread that seems to run through at least three of these mass killings is a lack of father in the home. In Blankenship's book, Fatherless America, he talks about the "built-in" respect that young men have for older males. I think this is especially needful with boys that have mental health issues. Our country's crisis is the breakdown of the family and what we really need are fathers that stay with their wives and biological children.

Rugeley, Staffs

I personally believe that some of the problem with society happens when folks leave the X-Box, the Wii and other game consoles to become the baby-sitter. I have been in homes where kids sit in front of a screen indiscriminately killing people with all sorts of weapons. They become dispassionate about other people, and pulling the trigger on a real person becomes as easy as disposing of the imaginary people on screen. That is why in our home such games have been a strict no-no. I went to one home where my son was sat playing such a game with the son in the family. I asked the parent not to allow him to play that game when in their home. I went by another time, and found my son playing the same game. He no longer visits that home.

Add to the above the wanton killing that happens in our movies and TV shows, and you have a sure-fire way of anaesthetising the human feelings of those in society who are prone to fits of depression or mental illness. "It's okay on the screen, so it's okay for me," becomes their norm.

Provo, UT

Perhaps an even more fundamental issue is the mayhem and destruction caused by unnecessary, wildly dangerous toxic molecules called, as a group, “Psychotropic Medication”.
These drug-addled, Genome Disrupted brains respond to neurotransmitters in literally lethal ways, brains whose impusivity thresholds are lowered far more than alcohol can lower them, people whose ability to examine and evaluate their thoughts and impulses have been severely damaged by the poisonous drugs they have been given DO kill people.

Provo, UT

Unfortunately we dismantled our adult long term care mental institutions years ago as being anachronisms of unenlightened treatment. We replaced them with mind and mood control drugs and group homes. All we have left are jails and prisons. But as the article points out there is a growing number of adults who can not be controlled by drugs or therapy or are too dangerous for group homes. We must admit our mistake and build new facilities that will house these people and take away the need to declare them criminals. No one should have to bare the burden of caring for these adults in fear and worry alone. This is one area where conservatives and liberals can find common ground.

Clearfield, UT

@Mr. Bean
The real scenario: A skilled person, with training and a CWP, pulls his or her weapon and ends the situation. We trust these teachers with our children everyday, but refuse to give them the tools to be effective. I have absolutely no problem with a teacher or administrater that has past a background check and been trained to handle a gun, carrying at school. Every time I see a DARE vehicle when I drop off my son, I know that One person is there to protect him. "Gun Free Zones" results in only criminals having guns. People who kill other people like this look for the path of least resistance. If they believe that there are people in the building with weapons to stop them, they will not go in. They are cowards. You sure don't see them running into a police station with guns blaring.

Ivins, UT

Like in Australia, have the government buy up all Military type, large clip type assault rifles and clips out there at market value and impose jail time thereaftrer for owning one. I have owned guns all my life, hunted nearly everywhere, and a life membger of the NRA, this thing has gotten out of hand. Let hand guns alone. They are needed for self protection.

As for the mentally ill this also has gotten out of control. We need answers, however, I doubt in this liberal sociiety it can happen. Killings will continue to plague our nation because we are poorly led.

Henderson, NV

Let's try to post this a 2nd time:

Here's a story closer to home than Connecticut. Any of you recall the stabbing death just last month of Zita Guodis, age 58, by her bi-polar 36-year-old daughter that occurred at their rental home in Cottonwood Heights? Do you recall that the mother had begged a local judge for "help". He suggested a protective order, which she said would not work. She was right! The daughter, Airida, told investigators that she’d gone off her medication, and that when she did, “bad things” would happen. And, imagine this, there were no guns involved, yet murder still occurred.

How much longer should families have to struggle with members who need mental health treatment, but won’t or can’t obtain it?

Henderson, NV

And let's try this comment again, too:

For Latter-day Saints, let us recall the reality that Joseph Smith, the Prophet of the Restoration, and his wife Emma, an Elect Lady, had a child who suffered from mental illness. Their youngest son David Hyrum, born five months after Joseph’s martyrdom, was struck down by it in his early 20’s. His symptoms today might be diagnosed as schizophrenia, which today we know onsets for males during young adulthood. David Hyrum Smith ended up living out the last 30 years of his life in an asylum for the insane in Elgin, Illinois, near Chicago. Read more about his life at Wikipedia.

We must recognize that mental illness exists and is no different than physical illness – one is of the body, the other of the brain. De-stigmatization of it must occur also. During Mental Illness Awareness Week this past October I read that 25% of the population will struggle with mental illness, at some time in their lives; ranging from things like schizophrenia all the way to ADHD. Based on friends and family in my life, this number appears to be accurate.

Why must this be such a silent struggle?

Bountiful, UT

As a society, we need to identify those with mental conditions that may lead to violence and both provide and insist on treatment by qualified providers. Further, we need to consider legislation that requires people to report threats of violence to authorities that they become aware of. Perhaps, this kind of legislation would change conversations to avoid making any threats of violence, setting a better example of how we should treat one another.

Bountiful, UT

As a society, we need to identify those with mental conditions that may lead to violence and both provide and insist on treatment by qualified providers. Further, we need to consider legislation that requires people to report threats of violence to authorities that they become aware of. Perhaps, this kind of legislation would change conversations to avoid making any threats of violence, setting a better example of how we should treat one another.

Salt Lake County, UT

The wild and uninformed speculation about the "mental illness" of the shooter is very bad. I have a son that has shown most of the behaviors described in the article. He is getting much better, and I pray the Michael in the article will also improve. However, the point is that my son or Michael may have problems, but the probability of either becoming a serial shooter is remote, perhaps as remote as that of a "normal" child. No progress will be made if any kid who is odd, or has problems fitting in is stigmatized by special "mental health" treatment mandated by a government agency.

Ivins, UT

The Government fix a problem? Come on give me a break. It's funny that we look toward "someone else" needs to fix this problem, especially the Government. I guess we look toward the experts and even they don't have a total grip on it. I have no answer, I'll admit to that. We will never truly know what these people are thinking before they "snap" (if that is what we call it). It's not like they are going to record something or do a "breaking news" story just before they do something.

A Scientist
Provo, UT

Mental illness is a challenging issue.

Jesus ministered to those "possessed with devils", the mentally ill, as well as the physically disabled.

What is the LDS Church doing about mental illness? We hear about the Church's humanitarian assistance (they never fail to advertise it), but we hear nothing about their facilities, hospitals, care centers, and programs for those afflicted with mental illness.

I wonder why not? Is it because such Church programs do not exist, and do not bring as much publicity?

Castro Valley, CA

I am the mother of a 35 year old autistic son. He has never been violent and I cannot imagine what as a mother it is like for you and your other children. My son does lack social skills and he does not understand social queues. Mentally he is in many ways 8 years old. That did not stop him from being sent to State prison. Prisons are the only solution society offers. Developmental centers are all closed or closing. Prison can only teach these young boys and men more bad behavior. Punishment is no substitute for treatment. Prison does not offer any treatment. I will pray for you and your son and your family. My heart goes out to you.

Kaysville, UT

The key word here in this article and in everyone of the comments is MONEY.
We all know we have a problem. We all know it should and can be helped to some degree. BUT, WHERE is the money to pay for those programs going to come from? WHO is going to pay the piper for those programs?
Democrats say fund it, Republicans refuse to pony up the funds to help anyone. No new taxes!!
What most folks won't discuss is the cost is borne each and every day in one way or another. If we don't pay it through mental health, we pay it through building jails and hiring guards.
It's the same with schools. Republicans want to destroy public schools so their charter schools can make some corporation money so we have kids that are not given what they need to have to read, do math or sustain themselves financially. Hence, they turn to crime and once again instead of funding education to enable kids to be self sustaining. We have to pay what is needed to help our children be successful. Not only intellectually and health wise but with work ethics and habits.

Salt Lake City, UT

Very well written...very well expressed in speaking in her own behalf as well as in the behalf of others. I'm afraid our society will still choose denial and pointing the finger elsewhere instead of really addressing all the problems which interact in one way or another with us all and affect all of us most significantly. "I am Adam Lanzas mother"..you could not have addressed this issue any better. Thank you.


My heart goes out to the author of this article. I am sure she feels alone but my guess is many many mothers feel the same way. Shame on insurance companies for severely limiting mental illness treatment. Shame on our governor for not allocating a heck of a lot more monies for treatment for mental illness, especially since we have a surplice this year. As a mental health provider we work with limited budgets and limited options. Unfortunately, most mental ill end up in the jails and prisons where mental health medications are to expensive to treat these people with. In a state where 'families are forever' why in the world do we tolerate such lax gun laws??? Seems to me the all mighty powerful NRA has everyone turning a blind eye to increased gun violence. I dont get it!!

to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments