Mother and 2 children found dead - suicide/murder

(139 Posts)
ShaggingZumbaStylee Sun 14-Jul-13 00:46:10

It sounds like she was really struggling, but I find it so difficult to understand why she killed her children with her.

link

MrsDeVere Mon 15-Jul-13 11:19:01

There is no doubt this is a tragic, sad and just horrible, horrible thing.

I suppose my overriding thought is 'I wish she hadn't done it'. I can't really think of much else to be honest.

I have been depressed. The though of the DCs is the thing that kept me from taking my own life. If I thought they were going to be taken from me, who knows what I would do?
But taking them with me? Hurting them?

I cannot imagine that.
But I already have a dead child. It is a reality to me, I don't have to imagine it.

That isn't meant as a top trump btw. Its just I think it changes everything. Your main aim in life, your one wish really is to keep your others alive.
Everything else is a bonus.

IF that makes any sense?

AimForTheMoon Mon 15-Jul-13 11:24:44

I couldn't help but judge the relationship between a 24 year old woman and a 52 year old man when i first read about this case. she was only 19 when she had her first child to him, he was 48. hardly an equal relationship surely? the more I read about the case, the worse it sounds.

It is undoubtedly terrible that she has killed those two little boys, but in my opinion, it is also terrible that this poor girl ended up in an abusive relationship, with someone so much older than her, and has ended up feeling that killing herself and her children was the only option. I feel hugely sorry for her and the children.

toffeelolly Mon 15-Jul-13 11:27:27

She was not in right mind to do something so awlful.

I have a friend who was in hospital for five months. She was admitted because she was suicidal...and wanted to kill her three children aged 1, 5 and 6. She was psychotic as a result of severe depression. She'd had no real help, no real intervention or support. Help is given AFTER the situations, but many hospitals ignore the lead up. She had family and friends who drove her to hospital and got her admitted and made sure she got help and they were her advocates, they demanded medical attention and they made sure that she got everything she needed. She is still on medication but has stopped the therapy.

Every single moment, she has loved her children. She once told me she loved them in the craziest way possible. Life was unbearable. So it would be cruel to let, no, force her own children to live out that life too. That was her reasoning- she said it was crazy. She loved them but she was mentally unstable and her love could have ended in disaster.

I know how hard we had to push to get her help. I know how much she loves her children. I know she carries the weight of her experience every single day and that she was repeatedly failed by hospitals, GPs and the NHS and that it was only luck that she had family and friends living nearby who could make sure that she was supported. Se was vulnerable and mentally ill.

I can't imagine wanting to kill my child. I can't imagine having my child die, let alone being the cause. The woman may have been coldheatted and evil. Or she might have been severely ill and was failed again and again after having a terrible life. The poor children sad I don't think I could have sympathy if it wasn't for my friend. I am very, very lucky that I have living children who I can hug every single day, and I can't imagine wanting to end their lives, I can't imagine them stopping existing. But I guess that woman could and did and now three lives have been lost, two innocent, young children are gone. sad

My heart goes out to all the familysad, so sad, so needless and i will never understand how someone can kill their own childrensad

Spero Mon 15-Jul-13 11:56:37

Lteve - I don't think I can comprehend of something more horrible and distressing than a small vulnerable child being hurt or killed by the adult he looked for to keep him safe.

But to hope that the mother 'burns in hell' is nasty.

I had a client who planned her own suicide and those of her children. She honestly believed she would be doing the right thing, that they would be all together in a safe and warm place. Luckily a family member was able to intervene and almost a year later, lots of drugs and therapy she isn't so ill anymore and her children are coming home, where they want to be.

I think your attitude or hate for people who have literally 'Lost their minds' explains a lot of the stigma that still attaches to mental illness.

I will reserve my hate for those parents who have murdered their children but before so doing they have put the children on the phone to say 'goodbye'. Funny how often those parents don't manage to kill themselves either. That suggests to me they knew what they were doing. I don't see how this woman did.

LtEveDallas Mon 15-Jul-13 12:00:20

Makes perfect sense MrsDV. When life is shit, when everything around you is falling apart, surely the only thing worth keeping going for is your family?

I had a friend that killed herself. She had a 5 year old and a 9 month old at the time. She was determined to die, nothing was going to stop her (she paid for her own funeral FGS). But the day she did it she made sure her kids were safe, made sure they were cared for before she took her own life. Now I was still furious with her for killing herself, but the provision she made for her kids was admirable.

She felt worthless - but her kids were worth more.

ShowOfHands Mon 15-Jul-13 12:02:48

LtEve, your opinion is your own and you are entitled to it. I think you sum it up best with your admission, twice in fact, that you don't understand why she did it and you admit you don't want to understand either. That's fine really as there's no reason for you to have to understand it. I only hope that those people whose job it is to understand this sort of behaviour strive harder to learn from this.

I have the same reaction to male and female family annihilators. I do strive to understand. This isn't anything to do with condoning or excusing behaviours but everything to do with trying to appreciate the complexities of such atrocious situations. It's disgusting and horrendous and all of the other ways you can describe it. Those children have been let down. But that poor woman has been let down too and I can't judge her for her actions because I have never been in her head. The actions in isolation are despicable but they didn't come from a straightforward choice.

Spero Mon 15-Jul-13 12:06:05

Yes, and Sylvia Plath made sure there were towels under the door when she gassed herself so that her children didn't die.

I agree, not every parent who kills themselves also kills their children. Some parents kill their children deliberately or carelessly. And some parents are in the grip of pyschotic delusions and GENUINELY believe they are doing the right thing.

To suggest that some one like that should 'burn in hell' is just nasty.

ShowOfHands Mon 15-Jul-13 12:08:34

TheMagicKey, I'm so pleased your friend is finally getting there. Sounds like she has some brilliant people around her. I hope she knows that none of what she has been through makes her a bad mother. She doesn't need to carry around that guilt. She was ill. And you can reassure her from me that a parent with depression and psychosis can still be the biggest, most brilliant and giant of a parent who is unconditionally adored by their children. I was one of those children.

Really LtEveDallas - it isn't like she was in a normal place was it - you do not choose to take your own life let alone those of your children if you are not extremely mentally ill (in this case).

It's an evil act to a sane rational mind - but it seems she was neither and until you have or seen someone suffer from extreme mental illness it is very easy to pass judgement.

miemohrs Mon 15-Jul-13 12:21:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LtEveDallas Mon 15-Jul-13 12:24:02

Spero, Show, but we don't actually know any of this about that woman do we? Those with compassion (of which I am obviously not one) are suggesting that she is depressed etc, but actually nothing has been released conclusively proves that.

My burn in hell comment comes off the back of the first reports. A knee jerk reaction to a family annihilator and TBH until it is confirmed that she had mental heath problems or was in the midst of a pyschotic delusion then I cannot feel anything but anger against her - and I DON'T believe that posters would be making the same allowances and/or excuses if it was the 52 year old man that jumped off the cliff in this case - they'd be full of sympathy for the poor mother who had been left behind suffering the devastating loss of her kids.

Where is the sympathy for the father of those children. The one that now has to live without them knowing that their ending was full of pain and suffering?

(and actually, as for burn in hell? It's just words. She's dead. She doesn't care what I say. I don't think she is currently sitting in a vat of molten rock suffering for her sins. She's just dead.)

ShowOfHands Mon 15-Jul-13 12:36:26

LtEve, no we don't know anything about the woman which is why I said that those people whose job it was to understand and prevent what happened, should be working to learn from this. If she was let down, if agencies were involved and there were failings etc, then the real onus is on them, not on us as speculative forum users. But this in mind, it is not my place to judge not knowing the facts. But I can strive to understand mental health issues in general terms and to accept that such terrible, desperate acts, I'm fortunate enough to not understand rationally. I choose as a person not to direct feelings such as hate towards a target I have little knowledge of. You choose to feel hatred for that woman. It doesn't mean either of us has any less sympathy or sadness for the situation or the family members left behind, merely that we choose to direct our energies differently.

And I would react the same way to a father who had done this. This doesn't mean I wouldn't have sympathy for the mother left childless. You're making the mistake of thinking we can only have one feeling at once.

How terribly sad sad

I have heard of several very sad tragedies like this over recent years. One in my city that I had some tenuous links with - mainly I knew people who knew the family.

So overwhelmingly my feeling is it's very sad - and mothers and families need more support from their families and communities.

But I do also feel that it is wrong as a mother to kill your children. Sometimes that aspect seems to get slightly lost in the reporting and general response of society I feel.
But I'd rather it got lost than people spoke so harshly of the mother as to say they hated her or to speak of hell.

I think some balanced, compassionate, but rational middle ground is needed.

miemohrs Mon 15-Jul-13 12:57:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsDeVere Mon 15-Jul-13 13:19:24

bloody hell
even if the father is a total dick to not feel sympathy for him?
Come off it.
How is that better than wishing the mother burns in hell?

His DCs are dead. We don't know what he did and he may have been a very unpleasant man but so are some of the partners of male murderers. But their children have been taken in the most horrific way.

50shadesofvomit Mon 15-Jul-13 13:33:41

What a tragedy...

At the risk of being flamed, I can sympathise with someone who took this desperate and tragic choice.

Im a single parent of 3. 2 out of 3 of my kids hate their Dad and would not want to live with him if I couldn't take care of them. Their extended family would not take them in either. The thought of my kids forced to live with a person they despise or to be in care breaks my heart.

I've suffered depression and been suicidal. I am on meds but fear it returning. Living with mental health issues is really tough. I hope that the woman and children are at peace.

ChippingInHopHopHop Mon 15-Jul-13 13:34:47

It is a terrible tragedy that 3 people have lost their lives sad

It is very very sad how it happened, but this woman was clearly under a lot of stress... I don't think anyone can judge her until you have walked in her shoes. She clearly didn't feel she could leave them with their father and seemingly didn't have anyone else who she thought would care for them. She obviously thought they would be better off dead than being left alone.

It is incredibly sad that she believed this was her only option. Isn't that the bottom line??

As for it getting a different response if was a man... it wouldn't (from me) if he was in exactly the same position, but that's rare - generally it seems that when men have killed their children it is so their (perfectly adequate, not emotionally/physically abusive) Mum can't have them. It is not the same, not at all.

ChippingInHopHopHop Mon 15-Jul-13 13:38:18

50shadesofvomit - you don't deserve to be flamed, not at all. I am lucky not to have suffered from serious depression, so I can only imagine how I'd feel - but I can understand how scary it must be to feel that you don't have any other option sad

RoooneyMara Mon 15-Jul-13 13:38:38

What immediately struck me was that in a situation where, say, your partner is abusing you, threatening you and assaulting you, and you are a mother, you have got VERY VERY LITTLE CHANCE of preventing him having contact with your children.

I am imagining, though it is purely speculation that, well what if he had said to her, if you kill yourself, I'll take the children...you cannot protect them...and perhaps she did not know what else to do.

I don't know if any of this might be true but I know the way the family court system is set up is absolutely TERRIFYING to some abused women, because it is weighted hugely in allowing contact between children and abusive, dangerous fathers.

I shan't cast judgment either way, in my own mind, until I am more aware of the circumstances, which may be never.

MrsDeVere Mon 15-Jul-13 13:41:18

It is pretty well documented that men tend to do this for different reasons than women.
When men do it the media do their best to find a reason why it is the woman's fault. She will be accused of affairs, goading, wanting to divorce, taking the kids away etc.

There does tend to be a more automatic feeling of female perpetrators initially though.

Neither is fair. Each case should be looked at separately. But its just too much, the death of a child by their parent's hands. Its not surprising people react instinctively.

LtEveDallas Mon 15-Jul-13 13:42:09

I'd have more sympathy for the father if he didn't have a restraining order out against him

Restraining Orders don't necessarily mean violence, although in this case I imagine it did. Just as his arrest for assault may not mean a serious assault (but all assaults are bad)

But no matter what he did - his 'punishment' seems to be having his children murdered... In what world can that be right? Those posters berating me for having no sympathy for the mother... why aren't you expressing the same sympathy for the father?

I have sympathy and compassion for him - he has lost his children. I have sympathy and compassion for her family, for his family, and for the friends and relatives of those poor kids. But I have no sympathy for a dead person, she's dead. She's got it easy compared to them.

GobbySadcase Mon 15-Jul-13 13:45:55

I've had PND so bad that I was planning my suicide. Only I was that irrational that I then thought "oh shit, what about the kids, can't leave them behind".

I'm well over that now, and looking back I'm horrified by it, but don't underestimate what you can think when the balance of your mind is disturbed.

Chubfuddler Mon 15-Jul-13 14:35:25

I agree with spero and mrsdv and others.

But the dominant opinion expressed on this thread would be MUCH more along the lines of LtEve's if a man had done this. Not perhaps these specific posters, but in general the response to a man killing his children is "bastard" and to a woman is "poor thing".

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