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Eternalbluepearl

Andrea Yates show that discusses religious aspect of case

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Eternalbluepearl

I just watched a show about the Andrea Yates case. I was a kid when it happened so I didn't know too much about it. Holy goodness. It reminds me of different fundies we snark on. The living in a bus, following a preacher who says most people are going to hell, the no birth control despite major mental health issues, etc. It was very upsetting and tragic. Wow. I had no idea. It makes things like Teri Maxwell's depression in her quiverfull, religious, homeschooling lifestyle sound even more dangerous than I thought.

A Mother's Madness:

Edited by Eternalbluepearl

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Wine time!
JMO

I think about her from time to time and those poor children.  Such a terrible tragedy that could have been prevented with either birth control or being willing to get her help earlier.  

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Unimpressed
seattlechic

Yep. In my view, the lack of mental health care killed those children. But, I haven't watched the documentar (thanks for posting!). Those poor children. My heart aches.

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Eternalbluepearl

From what I get from the show, Andrea was getting mental help for a few years and was put on anti-psychotic medications, but didn't take them. She also stopped going to her psychiatrist and stopped all medications to get pregnant with her last baby, the one she killed at 6 months old. According to the interviews, Rusty knew she would get post-partum psychosis again after giving birth the fifth time, but described it as getting a brand-new fancy car for free and the only catch was that you'd have the flu for two weeks. 

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violynn

I put the blame squarely on the husband's shoulders.  Andrea was completely under his cntrol, and he is the one who convinced her to get rid of the meds, knowing how dangerous it was for her and the kids.  And he left her alone with the kids after being told how dangerous THAT was.

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seattlechic

Oh shit. I had never heard of this Mike Woroniecki. What the fucking fuck. 

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Wenny

God, It so creepy because it so close to home and my aunt worked with her. 

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libriatrix
54 minutes ago, Eternalbluepearl said:

 According to the interviews, Rusty knew she would get post-partum psychosis again after giving birth the fifth time, but described it as getting a brand-new fancy car for free and the only catch was that you'd have the flu for two weeks. 

Holy crap. 

How did he not get charged with anything? 

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Glasgowghirl

Rusty is more to blame than Andrea I feel, he knew how bad she was didn't let her take her meds or go on birth control and knew she may lose it but still left her.

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Enraged
ADoyle90815
3 minutes ago, Glasgowghirl said:

Rusty is more to blame than Andrea I feel, he knew how bad she was didn't let her take her meds or go on birth control and knew she may lose it but still left her.

I agree, the sick thing about this is that he's since remarried and has a few children with his second wife. The car analogy could also apply to brood mares, I mean wives to him.

Edited by ADoyle90815

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Walking Cat Bed

Andrea was an ill woman who was entrenched in the worst of quiverfull. She had very little control over her situation and couldn't take her prescribed medication (due to pregnancy, possibly due to Rusty).

 

Rusty was reckless and at LEAST very controlling, if not abusive. He's abhorrent.

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Howl

Andrea Yates was originally convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life in prison. "Texas law requires that, in order to successfully assert the insanity defense, the defendant must prove that he or she could not discern right from wrong at the time of the crime."   Fortunately, her retrial in 2006 ended with a guilty by reason of insanity verdict and she was removed from prison to a mental institution. She's now in a low security mental hospital in Kerrville, TX.  Even when the first trial was going on, it was very easy to see that she was mentally ill. The prosecutor wanted the death penalty, but that was taken off the table soon after the verdict. 

For those who are interested, I'd highly recommend reading Are You There Alone?: The Unspeakable Crime of Andrea Yates by Suzanne O'Malley.

I don't know what her status is now.  At some point she wanted to be allowed to go to church services on Sundays. 

Please be aware the she drowned her children in a brief window of time (an hour) after her husband left for work and before her mother in law arrived to help her with the kids, as the MiL did on a daily basis.  However, her psychiatrist had advised that she be supervised 24-7. IIRC, she was on anti-psychotic medication when the murders took place.  

If I had to assign blame, it would be to her husband, who ignored the doctor who advised them to not have more children because of post partum psychosis and who left her home alone, and Michael Woroniecki (the itinerant pastor) whose fire and brimstone preaching probably fed her psychosis to the breaking point.  Neither of these men accept any blame at all. 

I've always felt a deep compassion for Andrea Yates, and from day 1, assumed she was mentally ill and not a cold hearted murderess. 

Edited by Howl

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Toothfairy

I still think about this case. Her husband should be charged too. Andrea was a ticking time bomb yet he allowed her to keep having kids. 

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Glasgowghirl

I hope his new wife never experiences any mental problems as its clear he is not supportive. I have had depression since I was 11 and I'm lucky that I know the signs of when it gets bad and I'm aware of the risks of it getting worse when I come to have children. If Andrea had had the help and support from her husband and didn't have  people telling her that it was gods will for her to keep having kids those children would be still alive

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usedtobenice

I read the the book mentioned above. Sorry, I am not the best when on tablet . Rusty knew she was not okay. Why did he have to fuck her? Is sex that important to fundamentalists? Even before the the tragedy,she could barely take care of her personal hygiene. Even when she was "sane" she was far from okay. How was that a turn on to him??!

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Eternalbluepearl
50 minutes ago, usedtobenice said:

Is sex that important to fundamentalists? Even before the the tragedy,she could barely take care of her personal hygiene. Even when she was "sane" she was far from okay. How was that a turn on to him??!

Oh my goodness, I never thought of this aspect. I think, yes, that sex is that important to fundies. 

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PsyD2013

I place the blame for the death of the five children with Rusty Yates.  In a 2002, journal article Andrea had stated to her prison psychologist that she no longer wished to have sex with Rusty because she was afraid to have more children and she might hurt them.  Rusty asserted is rights and told Andrea that she could handle more children and she was a good mom.    

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desertvixen
Quote

For those who are interested, I'd highly recommend reading Are You There Alone?: The Unspeakable Crime of Andrea Yates by Suzanne O'Malley.

Agree with @Howl, excellent book.  And yes, they had a plan to deal with it, but it sounded like they got lax on the routine, and Rusty was too selfish to ensure his wife and children were taken care of.

I was always disappointed that he essentially got no punishment, and shocked that some woman thought marrying him was a good idea.

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gustava
3 hours ago, violynn said:

I put the blame squarely on the husband's shoulders.  Andrea was completely under his cntrol, and he is the one who convinced her to get rid of the meds, knowing how dangerous it was for her and the kids.  And he left her alone with the kids after being told how dangerous THAT was.

And he got off scott free, remarried, and (I think) had more children.

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violynn

Rusty straight up told his MOL to come an hour late because he'd decided to make Andrea start caring more for the kids alone.  HE decded to ignore the dr.'s warnings and put those babies in harm's way.  How the DA didn't charge him is beyond me.

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Howl
39 minutes ago, violynn said:

Rusty straight up told his MOL to come an hour late because he'd decided to make Andrea start caring more for the kids alone.  HE decded to ignore the dr.'s warnings and put those babies in harm's way.  How the DA didn't charge him is beyond me.

I was unaware of this.  How appalling. Yes, the fact that he seemed to take no personal responsibility is just beyond words....

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usedtobenice

All I keep coming back to, is why did he keep having sex with her??? He knew she was so far from being okay, hospitals. I remember in the book that he thought she was better because she started shaving her legs again. What was the turn on???

I truly believe if she had not had the last one, Mary, she would not have killed all of them. The last pregnancy forced the fate.

 

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Howl

The legend of La LLorona (the wailing woman who has drowned her children) permeates Hispanic populations from Mexico through South America. 

Here's an interesting article relating the La LLorona legend to post partum psychosis and at the end mentions cases of contemporary women likely suffering from post-partum psychosis who have drowned their children.

 La Llorona: A Case of Postpartum Psychosis http://forum.maidenfans.com/threads/la-llorona-a-case-of-postpartum-psychosis.18569/

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Cleopatra7
2 hours ago, usedtobenice said:

All I keep coming back to, is why did he keep having sex with her??? He knew she was so far from being okay, hospitals. I remember in the book that he thought she was better because she started shaving her legs again. What was the turn on???

I truly believe if she had not had the last one, Mary, she would not have killed all of them. The last pregnancy forced the fate.

 

Like a lot of fundies, it wouldn't surprise me if Rusty Yates doesn't believe in mental illness or psychology. At the very least, he seems to believe mental illness is a minor inconvenience or can be prayed away. When he speaks to the media, he tends to downplay how extreme his and Andrea's beliefs were. There is no other logical reason for why he insisted the family live in an old bus or why he insisted on having children, despite the effect it was having on Andrea, other than religious beliefs. Michael Woroniecki said this about Yates:

"I will gladly sacrifice my reputation if it can spare Andrea from the death penalty and give her a second chance at life. However ... it is deceitful and irresponsible to blame doctors, hospitals, clinics or 'postpartum depression.' They (Rusty and Andrea Yates) both know that the issues which culminated in this tragedy are much, much deeper."

The quote comes from his Wikipedia entry which in turn comes from a Grand Rapids newspaper article which I don't think is live anymore. The fact that pospartum depression is in scare quotes suggests to me that he doesn't considered it to be a legitimate problem.

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katilac

I think that we have to be careful not to place all the blame on Rusty, or men in general, in the quiverfull movement. 

Remember, Andrea Yates was raised mainstream Catholic, not fundamentalist. She did not have a sheltered childhood and she was well-educated. She was valedictorian of her high school and captain of the swim team. She went on to get a nursing degree and worked as a nurse for eight years. She lived independently, not even meeting Rusty until she was 25.

She embraced the "as many kids as God will send us" mantra and other fundamentalist tropes as an independent adult. 

Rusty made some idiotic mistakes, but then so did the trained psychiatrists. It was a psychiatrist who said that she was not psychotic, and discontinued her medication. 

I'm not trying to defend Rusty so much as I am saying that Andrea willingly drank the Kool-aid, too. She was not a person who never knew another life, and not a person who couldn't support herself. 

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