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  1. A woman in Massachusetts strangled her three children and attempted to commit suicide last week. She had been diagnosed with post partum psychosis and was admitted to a psychiatric hospital. She was subsequently released to five times a week outpatient treatment. Her husband had been working from home. When he left the house for about twenty minutes to pick up a food order, she strangled all three children (IIRC, ages 7, 5 and 9 months), killing the two older kids. She then tried to commit suicide by jumping out of a second story window. The infant was life-flighted to a hospital but died a day or two later. She has been charged with murder. I don't know if she is currently in a psychiatric hospital or in jail. Everyone is desperately hoping that the murder charges will be dropped and she'll receive psychiatric care. She was a nurse and the outpouring of support from her husband, friends and co-workers has been amazing; she is well loved in her community. Post-partum psychosis can come on suddenly and is marked by delusions and paranoia -- psychosis. There is no information at this point whether she had depression or PPS with her previous two kids. There is a lot of hope on social media that the horror of this incident will highlight the awareness of PPS and how severe it can be. This took me right back to Andrea Yates, who had a long history of mental illness. After suffering form major post-partum mental illness after the birth of her 4th child, her psychiatrist strongly advised against another pregnancy because the risk of another round of post partum psychosis was extremely high. But Rusty and Andrea were quiverfull and had a 5th child; Andrea was diagnosed with post partum psychosis. In the brief window (about 20 minutes) between when Rusty went to work and Rusty's mom arrived to stay with Andrea and help out as she did every day, Andrea drowned all of her children. She was tried for first degree murder and spent some years in prison. She was retried and found not guilty by reason of insanity. She is currently in a mental hospital in Kerrville, TX and will likely spent the rest of her life there. Patriarch Rusty divorced Andrea, remarried and is living his best life. I'm in Texas and you may also be in a state that has or is in the process of outlawing abortion. It made me realize that there are women who have struggled with severe post-partum illness who have been advised to not have more children but find themselves pregnant. They will now be forced to carry that pregnancy knowing some very rocky, terrifying or even dangerous times lie ahead. This is especially true for single mothers without support.
  2. In the tragedy that is the QAnon influence over mentally fragile people, Matthew Coleman, the owner of a popular southern California surf school and devout evangelical Christian, in August 2021 drove his 2-year-old son and 10-month-old daughter across the border into Mexico and murdered both with a speargun (or stake) through their tiny chests. He subsequently dumped bloody clothes in various spots as he headed back to the US, later recovered by Mexican police. He claimed that the children had serpent DNA inherited from his wife, and, by murdering them, he was saving the world from monsters. Where did he come up with this insane idea that led him to murder his children in such a gruesome way? QAnon, of course. This excellent Rolling Stone article covers the influence of QAnon on Coleman and its larger spread. QAnon's Deadly Price Church-loving surf instructor Matthew Taylor Coleman fell into online conspiracy theories, then allegedly admitted to killing his kids to save the world. How did no one see it coming? (Note: No one who knew Matthew Coleman saw this coming, even those who spoke with him in the hours before he set this horrible crime in motion.)
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