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What would you do...

Posted by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 9:33 AM
  • 8 Replies

Ok mommies. We are all protective of our special children, autism and not autism. We admitted our son to a behavioral health hospital and found out he was neglected and, in some ways, even mistreated. The way he was treated, he can't get over it. He calls it the "bad hospital" and is terrified if we even drive by it on our way to someplace else. He freaks out and rocks so hard he shakes the whole car. I can't shake the guilt, feeling like this is my fault. Is it? I didn't know he would be treated this way. It is hard enough to turn your child over to someone else but when they are not treated right, it puts an arrow through your heart. You should see his eyes every time we pass this place. They are as big as dinner plates and he chants over and over, " I don't want to go back, I wasn't bad, I wasn't bad"...He associates being bad with being there because we originally placed him there when we couldn't control his behavior. He was hurting us and his sister. Honest, I didn't know they would do the things they did. I have cried so many tears over this. How do you shake the guilt? It breaks my heart to think of the things my son has been through. As if life isn't hard enough for him. Of course we are taking legal action but it doesn't help how I feel. Will my ds live with this terror for the rest of his life? If he does, damn the staff at that place. I have to bite back the bitterness. It won't help my son and it will eat me alive. Ladies, how do I deal with this? What would you do???? I just cry and want to bubble wrap him so no one else can hurt him again. Advice welcome...crying

by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 9:33 AM
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by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 10:08 AM
3 moms liked this

Sorry, that is so awful. I don't know exactly what would work to help him get over it. Maybe you could "pretend" to call the place (it could be a friend maybe instead) to file a complaint, and let him tell them over the phone about how he had a hard time and would never go back. I don't know what's right, I just know he needs closure to get past it. Maybe write an agreement down on paper between the two of you that says he will never have to go there again, so that he has it to look at to remind him? Ask a therapist what they suggest.

by Silver Member on Mar. 8, 2013 at 10:09 AM

Hugs busmommy,

I'm glad you are taken legal action, because this hospital won't be able to do this to another child. I understand how upset you are about this and how it torments your son. My son had a traumatic experience with a sleep study when he was 3 months old, preemie, and weighed 3 lbs. When he hears buzzing machine, he goes into panic mode. He is now 6 years old. However, his psychologist says that when he feels this way, reassure him that he is safe. As time passes and happy memories replace traumatic ones, it will get better.

Just expect behavioral issues when going inside of any hospital. My son has gotten better, but he used to attack anyone wearing a white coat, because of how many times he was poked and pricked in the NICU. I explain to the doctors ahead of time, and they are very patient. Singing songs helped him feel safe and as if nothing bad was going to happen. Children are very sensitive and he now has an emotional allergy. Something disturbed him so much, that a physical reaction ensues.

Hugs, Hugs and more hugs. You shouldn't feel guilty. You entrusted a place with your child's care, they are the ones that are guilty. You did the best thing getting him out of there. Things will get better.

by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:24 PM
I'm sorry that all this has taken place. As cliche as it sounds, time will help both of you and with what the previous mom said about reassurance. My son was mistreated when he was in preschool and he would get scared every time we passed by it. It's been three years since I pulled him out of that place. Over the years his anxieties have decreased when we pass by it(its very close to home). I would tell him that I had him and he now learned at home so he didn't have to go back there anymore.

As for feelings of guilt, you have to process it. Let the emotions come out. Then you have three choices- 1) you learn and grow and become a more knowledgeable person due to this experience 2) you stay the same person as you are now or 3) you get worse and make reckless decisions and allow the guilt to consume you. Sending strength, encouragement and peace your way.
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by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:43 PM

Hugs momma.  

by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:55 PM

hugs I can't even begin to imagine that kind of pain.   Get some personal counciling  and family counseling; you cannot hold those feelings in and it will make things worse if you try.  You did what you thought was best and it's not your fault things went wrong.  Continue to fight the good fight; you will find progress.

by on Mar. 8, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Thanks ladies! This is why I enjoy this group so much. Someone is bound to make you smile when you are feeling down. How priceless is that?

by Kari on Mar. 8, 2013 at 6:52 PM

I am so very sorry for your pain and your son's unnecessary suffering. I don't know what they did but you should certainly report it and tell your son (as many times as he needs to hear it) that he will never go back there again. Ignorance is no excuse for damaging children. My heart breaks for you, I can only imagine how painful this must be. I wish you all well and a speedy recovery from such a terrible trama. I would tell everyone I know what happened and do every thing I can to make sure this "hospital" is brought up on charges.

by Darby on Mar. 8, 2013 at 7:10 PM

I'm so sorry to hear this.  I can't imagine how you are feeling right now mama.  Big hugs!

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