MyBlog

Miranda

It feels strange.

 

Not being together again under one roof. That doesn’t feel strange. Quite the opposite. For the first time in two and a half years, I feel like I have a home again. Longer really. There was no peace in our apartment even before the Great Division. There had been no peace since before Bodhi was born.

 

It has been a long time since I’ve been able to go to sleep without fear. The new apartment is like a sanctuary. I close my eyes at night knowing that Jani is sound asleep in her room, Susan in another. I fall asleep on the living room floor between those rooms, listening to the sound of Bodhi breathing above me in his bed. When I wake up, everybody is still here.

 

I feel secure. I feel safe in the middle of this two bedroom apartment.

 

Jani is fine.

 

Bodhi  is fine.

 

Feeling strange is not the same thing as feeling uncomfortable. I suppose part of this journey has been getting a glimpse at the full range of human emotion. The English language does not have words for all the things we can feel.

 

So if I am not uncomfortable, why do I feel strange?

 

I suppose part of it is like coming home from a battle that has waxed and waned over the past four years. About four years ago, shortly before Bodhi was born, I left my life. I was drafted. Every parent of a special needs child gets that draft letter, a metaphorical letter drafting you into a conflict you don’t really understand. Like the real draft, as it existed prior to the termination of the draft in 1973, whether you get drafted is entirely a matter of pure, dumb luck, a macabre lottery. The real draft actually was a lottery. Birthdays of males ages 18 to 26 were assigned a random number, and if that number was chosen, every male with that draft number received the letter. My father missed going to Vietnam because his birthday, July 28th, was assigned a high draft number, while July 27th and July 29th had higher numbers. Just like the real thing, what takes you into the war against mental illness, autism, or severe physical disability is the random falling of a lottery ball.

 

The war inside Jani started in her infancy, but I suppose I consider my draft day to be December 17th, 2007: the day Bodhi was born. Or maybe it was March 9th, 2008, the day Jani first went inpatient at Alhambra, something I opposed. Truthfully, it was probably December 2nd, 2001, the day Susan and I found out she was pregnant with Jani.

 

No, I think my real draft day was not a day at all but several weeks, months, while I struggled to keep Bodhi safe from Jani. I think my real draft day was when I looked into my daughter’s eyes and knew something else was inside her.

 

When you get drafted, you only have two choices: either run to a metaphorical Canada or say your good-byes to the life you knew and report for duty.

 

At the time, I didn’t think about it. I didn’t have time. The war was already upon me.

 

Unfortunately, we have no basic training. We have no Camp Pendleton or Parris Island. There is no drill instructor to teach you how to stay alive and keep those in your charge alive. You have to learn under fire.

 

You are placed in a situation you have no idea how to solve. Nobody prepared you for this. The fact that the enemy lives inside someone you love, that you never know when it is coming, the constant living in fear that it will take your child from you forever or that you simply aren’t up to the job. There is no medic when you get hurt. There is no evacuation from the field of combat.

 

Only then do you start to think about quitting. And you can. Even soldiers in combat can quit. Of course, there are penalties for this: the stockade. For those of you who are thinking about leaving, talk to those who have left. Once you are drafted, there is no real escape. If you leave, you simply spend the rest of your life in a stockade of your own guilt, far worse than any sentence that can be handed down.

 

I am not saying it is nobler to stay and fight. I am only saying that there are penalties for everything.

 

I did quit and it was very public. Oprah asked me about it on the air. I attempted suicide back in June of 2009, only weeks after we split into two households. I put the proverbial gun in my mouth and pulled the trigger. It just didn’t kill me. But even before I knew I wasn’t going to die, I knew I had to go back.

 

The reason most soldiers don’t quit in the face of combat has nothing to do with honor or duty or belief in the war. It is because they know that it means abandoning their fellow soldiers. Even without me, Jani, Bodhi, and Susan would remain in the battle. I couldn’t leave them alone to whatever fate might befall them. I had to go back.

 

So if you’re not going to quit, there is only one option left: survive. Do what it takes to get yourself and those in your charge through the day.

 

This blog began as my attempt to make some sort of sense of the world I was now in.  Letters from the Front, if you like. When Shari Roan, the LA Times health reporter heard about us from a friend and wanted to do a story, I had no time to think. It was just like having a “Stars & Stripes” reporter following us around. My focus was entirely upon Jani, who had been in UCLA for three months by that point. What made the story stand out was our decision to split the kids into two different apartments. That is primarily what drove the media interest. It seemed such an extreme move, something they had never heard of before, a radical way to hold our family together despite Jani’s illness. When I had time to think about it, my sole motivation for doing the Times’ story was the hope that the publicity would help us in our constant fight with Blue Shield to keep Jani inpatient. My only interest was in the pressure the media could bring. When 20/20 and Oprah came calling, I was largely in a daze. It was still a daily fight for survival. My only thought in regards to media appearances was the same as it had been for the Times: the more the world knew what was happening to Jani, the easier it would be to break down the doors of care for Jani. And that meant letting the world know that childhood schizophrenia existed and there were no services. The media was a tool in an effort to get word of the war out to a larger audience. That is why we were selective. We didn’t take every media offer that came along. The focus had to be on the impact of the disease, not on potential cures.

 

Two things surprised me. The first was that I was surprised by the level of interest. I never expected Jani’s story to have the impact it did. Mental illness, even mental illness in children, had been around for a long time. Jani’s social worker at UCLA, now retired, told us about what it was like in the 1960s. Jani would have been on the “back ward” of Camarillo State Hospital (now CSU Channel Islands). There were kids like her living in state hospitals. What happened to them? Where did they go? Did they get better? Or did they wind up on the streets, self-medicated with narcotics?

 

The media exposure then took on a different purpose. We had to change the world, to provide services for children like Jani before they reached adulthood, before prison or homelessness. What we wanted the world to see was that our little blonde daughter was the early incarnation of the man you see screaming at thin year on a street corner. Knowing we would not live forever, we were driven by desperation to provide a safe environment for children like Jani before they turned from cute kids to scary teenagers and the world stopped giving a damn and wanted them in prison.

 

The second thing that surprised me was the sheer number of people who wrote to us, pouring out to us what they were going through and saying “I thought we were alone.” To quote Sting, “We’d never known it, being alone.” Kids like Jani were all over the world. They didn’t have the media protecting them so we made it our mission to try and extend Jani’s media attention to envelope those other children and those other families.

 

I did that because if the situation was reversed, and your family had a public voice and mine didn’t, I would hope you would do the same thing.

 

But there was one final thing that surprised me: the attacks. I never saw that coming. I never saw Jani’s care or her diagnosis as controversial. It never occurred to me that there could be a handful of people who would see this in an entirely different way.

 

Gradually, I learned to tune those handful out. What was most frustrating to me was that in reality, we wanted the same thing: dignity and the right to happiness for the mentally ill.

 

Generally, they are pretty harmless. The internet gives everybody a voice. Unfortunately, it also gives people a sense of power, a sense that they know what they really don’t.

 

Right in the middle of moving day, we got a visit from the Department of Child and Family Services (LA County’s version of CPS). It was our fourth visit overall, so I didn’t panic. I continued screwing the TV to the wall while one field agent talked to Susan and the other talked and played with Jani and Bodhi. They know our story and they know, as they tell us every time, that families with a child with mental illness are statistically several times more likely to get called on by CPS. It comes with the territory. I don’t know of a single family with a mentally ill child who hasn’t gotten a visit from CPS.

 

This particular visit was for two purposes. First, they had been planning to come out anyway. DCFS knew Jani during the worst of her psychosis. They classified her as a danger to Bodhi, which at one time she was. Had we not split into two apartments two and half years ago, losing one child or the other was a real possibility. We were warned not to move back together until Bodhi turned five. Until that time, as far as they were concerned, Jani remained a potential danger to him.

 

We moved back together with Bodhi still two months shy of turning four. Jani had been fine with him for awhile. We could even bring him over to her apartment. The financial inability to maintain two apartments without donations just forced us to do what we were probably ready to do some time ago.

 

Knowing that we were moving, they had to come to check on how Jani did with Bodhi. They were going to do that anyway. Something just sped up the process.

 

Somebody filed a claim of abuse. Specifically, the claim had been made that we were overdosing Bodhi on Benadryl to make him sleep.

 

Anybody who works with children is what is called a “mandated reporter.” This means that under penalty of law they must report any suspicion, no matter how slight, to CPS for investigation. Doctors are mandated reporters. Teachers are mandated reporters. Dentists are mandated reporters. Therapists are mandated reporters.

 

When a claim is made against you, CPS cannot legally divulge the identity of the claimant, but they can say whether the claim was made by a mandated reporter.

 

It was not.

 

When claims are not filed by mandated reporters, they are usually filed by a concerned citizen who actually knows the family and children in question. They see something that concerns them and they call it in. Fair enough.

 

Since our story became public over two years ago, DCFS has received two claims about us…. from people who have never met any of us. There only knowledge of us comes from what they have seen on TV and/or what they have read on my blog.

 

Nonetheless, DCFS is obligated under law to investigate any claim, regardless of whether the claimant actually has met the family or children.

 

In this case, as soon as we heard the claim, we knew exactly who it was. We know because the language of the claim came directly from a conversation with one of our regular critics on Facebook, a woman by the name of Jen B (I will refrain from using her full name because then I would be no better than her). Jen B is the same person who uses the handle “WarriorMom” on the Amazon discussion page about my book, who has posted somewhere in the vicinity of 400 posts accusing me of abusing Jani, doing everything from taking my blog posts out of context to outright lies. We know it was her because she private messaged Susan on Facebook after Susan mentioned giving Bodhi Benadryl to help him sleep, accusing her of abuse. She also used a blog post of mine from somewhere back in June of this year where I refer to giving Jani adult doses of Benadryl (25mg) to ease her suffering from tactile hallucinations. What Miss Jen neglected to mention in her report to DCFS is that both were under doctor’s orders. Jani was prescribed adult Benadryl to counteract the effects of possible EPS (extra pyramidal symptoms) from the thorazine, a drug which carries a risk of dystonic symptoms and tardive dyskensia. For security reasons, I no longer blog about Jani going to UCLA until after she is out. Hence, no one outside of our close friends knew that she had gone back in late June because she was shoving her hand down her pants all the time, convinced she was having loose stool. Tactile hallucination or not, it was crippling her, so she went back to get everything checked out. A full panel of metabolic and endocrine tests were done. She was fine, but the doctors decided it was time to end the Benadryl, as Benadryl is an anticholinergic agent and clozapine, which Jani is also on, is also an anticholinergic (anticholinergics block the uptake of the neurotransmitter acytocholine). Jani’s acytocholine level was a little low so the decision was made to stop the Benadryl. She hasn’t had it since then.

 

Bodhi’s dose, prescribed under the order of a psychiatrist, was never that high. It was the children’s dose (12.5mg) and was ordered to help reduce anxiety (the only other option being Risperdal and nobody wants to do that with a child that young).

 

Jen WarriorMom did not know about Jani coming off Benadryl because I hadn’t blogged about it. She did, however, know, because Susan told her, that Bodhi’s dosing was prescribed by a doctor, which, since she failed to tell DCFS this in her report, technically makes it a false report (as she withheld information).

 

DCFS is doing their due diligence, talking to Bodhi’s doctor, teachers, and even his dentist, as they are supposed to. But most of our conversation with dealt with how to deal with Jen WarriorMom.

 

Jen WarriorMom is not a doctor. She is a massage therapist. From what I hear, she does a pretty good Swedish massage. That in and of itself does not preclude her from making a claim. What does is the fact that she lives 1500 miles away from us and has NEVER EVER met me, Susan, Jani, or Bodhi. She says she doesn’t have to meet us. She is certain Jani is being abused.

 

DCFS is concerned because Jen WarriorMom is not your average critic. She is a full on internet stalker. She invaded my private Facebook page under a false identity (causing me to shut it down). But what really scares the shit out me is this woman is hell bent on destroying my family. That’s not hyperbole. She wants Jani and Bodhi removed from our care and placed in foster care. She even has a website set up to this effect, arranging a network to “follow” Jani and Bodhi once they are removed from our care (apparently forgetting that privacy laws would prevent her from doing so). This woman is so convinced that I am evil that she wants my kids taken away from me.

 

This woman hates me more than my ex-girlfriends.

 

A pretty irrational hate at that, considering that she has never met any of us. She seems not to care what happens to Jani, along as she is away from me.

 

So DCFS’s recommendation was to stop speaking publicly about what is going on with Jani and Bodhi RIGHT NOW. What happened in the past doesn’t matter because that has already been investigated and cleared. But everything we say in the present can and will be used against us. DCFS knows this is a unfounded claim (although, like I said, they are doing their job and we are cooperating) their concern is that if they get called out enough, eventually a judge is going to wonder why.

 

That scared the shit of me, I’ll admit. It scared me that a woman who has never met us, who clearly has severe mental health issues of her own, and who lives 1500 miles away could reach out and destroy our family just by picking up the phone.

 

And she can render us silent, at least about Bodhi and Jani’s current progress.

 

This kills me because I know there are those of you out there who depend on hearing how Jani is doing, because it gives you strength. It kills me that one obsessed stalker who would never have known we existed if not for the LA Times article can scare me into silence, breaking what bonds my readers.

 

I haven’t decided yet what I am going to do about it. I am not going to stop speaking though, or blogging. My struggle is with deciding if I want to take the risk of talking about what is going on with Jani and Bodhi, knowing this woman is out there. I am torn between my desire to provide you a light in the darkness and the need to protect my family and especially my children from the foster care system.

 

Like I said, Jen WarriorMom (a misnomer if there ever was one) would never know about us if we hadn’t gone public. But if we had never gone public, hundreds of other families would still believe they were alone. Their children would still be getting substandard care and substandard education. They would still be isolated.

 

No, I don’t regret that and I never will.

 

So you know what, Jen “WarriorMom?”

 

Fuck you.

 

[video:

100×100]

47 comments on “Miranda

  1. Expose & then Block them!
    I wonder if it could be an angry ex in disguise on the internet but probably not. I wonder, can you report her to the police for harrassment/internet stalking or is there any way you can block her- like block her IP address.

    Since you pretty much know who she is- no matter which name she uses- I wonder if you could make your blogs private and have ‘us’- who actually care- create a free account to login to your blogs.

    But please don’t stop blogging- you are helping a lot of us out here, even those of us who don’t have kids but deal with mental illness ourselves and/or in our families.

    For now, at least you can block her on your facebook page. Don’t let someone like her instill fear or try to take away everything you’ve achieved & will achieve. I believe you are meant to share your story publicly because you are very knowledgeable and persistant in trying to get the right help for the mentally ill, not to mention how we all help each other by sharing our stories and knowing we are not alone in this battle.

    MICHAEL, IT’S TIME YOU START FINDING A WAY TO BLOCK THESE INTERNET HARRASSERS/STALKERS- THEY’RE CREATING NEGATIVE ENERGY IN YOUR LIFE AND YOU NEED ALL THE POSITIVE ENERGY YOU CAN GET RIGHT NOW. THIS IS NOT TO SAY YOU WON’T HAVE ANY CRITICS OR “CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM” NOW AND THEN, AND THAT’S OKAY. BUT WHEN THEY CROSS THE LINE, IT’S TIME TO CUT THEM OFF, DON’T YOU THINK?

    IT’S ONE THING FOR PEOPLE TO VOICE THEIR OPINIONS OR WHATEVER AND ANOTHER WHEN THEY’RE CONSTANTLY THREATENING TO SPLIT UP YOUR FAMILY IN THE MIDST OF YOUR CRISIS! OF COURSE, YOU SHOULDN’T WORRY BECAUSE EVEN THE DCFS KNOWS YOUR STORY & WHAT THIS WOMAN IS TRYING TO DO.

    MICHAEL, AT THIS POINT, YOU KNOW THE OBVIOUS THING TO DO IS TO DRAW THE LINE WITH THIS WOMAN- THESE ARE YOUR BLOGS, YOUR FACEBOOK, NOT HERS! I’M GLAD YOU EXPOSED HER- NOW ALL YOUR READERS KNOW ABOUT HER, LOL.

    We look forward to continuing to read your blogs & share our experiences & to buy your book when it comes out!

    Note from Michael: No, it’s definitely not an ex! That was a joke on my part.

  2. warrior mom
    Is there any legal action you can take against her? Or some type of restraining order? What scares me is people like her only seem to escalate their actions. Fortunately it sounds like DCFS is aware of her false claims. And its reassuring that she probably lives many many miles away… She sounds like she is suffering from some type of delusion that she somehow knows your family, or is under the delusion that she and Jani are connected or something. Maybe schizophrenic (off her meds) or bipolar manic. Actually its as if she is “obsessed” by Jani’s case. Its terrible to hear how someone like this is upsetting your family. You are so clearly such excellent parents, seeking the very best care for your children. Also as a note to Jen B…why would you assume that ONLY you know what is going on with Jani and Bodhi…they are in contact with so many doctors etc. on a regular basis they have many people looking out for their welfare that any abuse would have already been picked up. So back off and relax, leave this innocent family alone!!

  3. Hugs to you all
    Michael, I have kept Jani & your entire family in my prayers since your appearance on Oprah. As many people have said, just WATCHING Jani’s energy made me tired. But I knew, KNEW two things: that you & Susan have been stalwart parents when 90% of other parents (and your critics) would have given up. I know that when you described the meds, the hospitalizations, the therapies, that your critics who insist that Jani needs a different diet, or an exorcism, or a bedroom arranged in a Chinese math pattern, are pretty dense. A child who is mentally sound but defiant, or allergic to red dye or in tune with the meridians of her ancestors, does NOT get prescribed heavy duty medication and spend months in a psych ward. For your critics, it seems as if they need Jani to not be schizophrenic because the idea that such maladies can hit a child so hard rocks that old American way of thinking. You know, IF only Dads worked, Moms stayed home, there were no divorce and plastic were banned, we’d all be in utopia. The finger of fate doesn’t just hit the innocent like that–someone has to have done something wrong. And, of course, it’s the parents.

    You were right about your assessment of your stalker. Obviously this is a woman with her own mental health issues, maybe not on medication, maybe damaged by her own childhood abuse. It has nothing to do with Jani or you or Susan, you are simply her target. I imagine you are not the first family she stalked, nor will you be her last. I guess everyone in the public eye–to any degree–gets stalkers. It is testament to the anonymity of the internet that allows “normal” adults to act like brats, and for those with deep issues to weild power. Scary that people like your stalker may have to be incarcerated in order to receive the help she needs.

    I’m only one person, but I realize that the plight of kids–just in our rich nation–is overwhelming. I remember how just decades ago children who were imperfect mentally were shoved into institutions. Remember Geraldo Rivera’s expose on “Willowbrook”? Mothers who gave birth to Down Syndrome babies were told to not even hold the baby but allow him or her to be institutionalized, go home and “try again.”

    Please reach out, as you do, to the network of folks who can offer free legal advice, tech help, whatever you need to get your stalker stopped. As many, many people have tried to reason with her (and it is impossible) that if she were so adamant about her “warrior” status she would be fostering kids of real abuse, rape, starvation, instead of trying to wrest two small kids from their home and into the system. But, of course, I believe that your stalker is probably not capable of fostering kids. Or herself.

    I will buy your book, and hopefully I can make another donation to you soon. If it is any comfort, I probably would have just prayed for Jani & all of you and that was it. But the posts by your harrasser have brought out the “warrior human” in me. I want to see you all safe & well-provided for as you urge Jani toward her potential. I hope the book is a bestseller, I hope it is made into a movie. I hope it makes your family financially set and you & Susan are free to engage whatever new therapies come along in the field of pediatric mental health.

    Strength to you all. And if other parents of chidren fighting mental illness stand with you, you can make an example of that stalker. Not to see her languish in prison or lose her assets to a lawsuit, but to see her get the help she needs. What a hell she carries within her own head.

    Note from Michael: She claims to have two kids of her own, so no, I don’t want her incarcerated. I don’t believe in lawsuits (what do they achieve?) What I want, what I have learned from experience, is that everybody keeps telling you that you are wrong and need to look at yourself, that might just be true.

  4. Perfect ending
    I’ve been wondering how things are going and after reading through this latest blog entry, just have to tell you I’m so glad you had the guts to say that. So does it make anything different? Nope, but MAN doesn’t it feel good to “say” it. All together now: FUCK YOU JEN/WARRIORMOM! ;D

  5. Is warriormom the person on youtube with the name beautifulmind who keeps telling people to protest your book and encouraging people to write to the publisher to stop its release or is that a different nutjob.

    Note from Michael: I honestly don’t know if they are the same person or not. There are a few trying to stop the publication of a book (which is a waste of time).

  6. Wow, unbelievable. I can’t believe that some total nutjob you’ve never met living so far away can hobble you like this. It isn’t right. I don’t understand why, if they’re aware that she’s some off-the-wall obsessive stalker with a mental issue, that they’re even giving credence to what she’s saying. I wish there was something you could do about it. Probably not much to be done about her stalking you online and expressing her crazy opinion, but if she continues making false reports like this about you, I would imagine that it would eventually get her into some kind of trouble. I just hate to see you having to deal with this, and I hope that the part about her having kids of her own is another of her made-up fantasies, because she sounds unstable as hell.

    Note from Michael: To answer your question, yes, making false allegations will eventually get you into trouble. This is because DCFS has to investigate any claim they get and take it seriously. If the reporter had reason to believe her information was correct, that is one thing, but if she knew, as she did, that this was under doctor’s orders and reported it anyway, well…let’s just say that’s not a good thing to do. As long as you make a report with the best of intentions you are fine. If not, there are consequences. DCFS can file a complaint with this woman’s local authorities for making a false claim. I have no idea if they will or not, though. What they do with is entirely up to them.

  7. Jen pretend Warrior Mom
    Dear Michael,
    That was one of the most disheartening blogs I’ve read – to be attacked by this so called woman when she knowingly distorts facts and causes your family distress. I’m sure there are steps you can take with her local authorities to place some type of stay away order on her. Dear Lord, for the sake of her own children I wish she would disengage from this unnatural, self destructive behavior and concentrate on HER OWN FAMILY! She has serious issues that need to be addressed sooner than later. I know FB has private groups that you can move to and no one has access except those you accept. That would not reach the majority of your readers but it’s an option just to keep out whacko’s like Jen. Your message and story is so inspirational & I can’t wait to get your book (I’ve already pre-ordered it on Kindle). Keep up the good work, you are doing a phenomenal job as parents and should be awarded some type of acclaimation. Best wishes for continued success with your family. Final note – Jen & all the naysayers, please, please, PLEASE go somewhere else with your filthy ignorance.

    Note from Michael: Thanks but we are just trying to survive and do what we can for others. From what I’ve told, Jen WarriorMom’s latest post on the Amazon thread is she willing to go to jail. Considering that she claims to have children that is really disturbing. At this point I am less concerned about what she can do to us and increasingly more concerned about the impact her obsession might be having on her own family. If she would be willing to go to jail to keep up her attacks on me, that shows she is pretty disturbed.

  8. Really ?
    Oye.Talk about mental health un-checked. Instead of trying to destroy Jani’s family maybe she should seek some help for her own.I think dcfs was at the wrong home.

  9. A second comment is I get mad at people who make false claims to children’s services those agency are already stretched to their limit trying to deal with kids who are actually being abused and when they get claims that people make because the claimant doesn’t like someone (which is pretty much the case here this women just doesn’t like it that Jani is on medication) it is a waste of their time.

  10. Re: Miranda
    Hi Michael,
    First of all, if you’re not aware of where Warriormom lives, find this out and get a restraining order on behalf of the family. You all have suffered enough trauma.
    Secondly, I wanted to commend your family for your unwaivering bravery and fortitude. You and Susan have given Jani a life that she may have never experienced with your determination and commitment to treatment. I am currently in my last year of nursing school with a focus on psychiatric nursing. Benadryl is very commonly used for children with psychiatric diseases, as it has both a calming effect and prevents EPS from antipsychotics. 25mg is actually a considerably low dose, especially in consideration of Jani’s hallucinations. Growing up, I too suffered from mental illness that my mother picked up on even during my first years. Because she looked into every intervention possible and got me the treatment that I needed, I am alive and functioning today. While I know I will require medication and therapeutic interventions for the rest of my life, my mother’s commitment and support continues to sustain me, and I am living proof that people with mental illness can flourish.
    So thank you, to you and your wife, for opening your lives to the world. And thank you to all the incredible parents that never give up.

    Note from Michael: Thank you, but I would remiss if I didn’t acknowledge all the people who have helped us keep our family together. They’re generosity made our unity easier. They know who they are.

  11. Right artist (Cee-Lo) wrong song (yeah, that one) πŸ˜›

    My family has been stalked by a former foster parent who made a lot of false claims and calls to CPS. (She called because we cut my goddaughters’ hair too short. Seriously.) Eventually, they threatened to fine her, which only meant she started some twisted sort of phone tree to keep the calls coming. CPS knows it’s all b.s.

    I feel someone a comfortable distance from you should make this woman’s information public, and ask the population if they want children who are actually being abused to die without help because this wretched harpy insists upon tying up already strained services… I’d encourage them to write their public officials in addition to letting her know, in a respectfully firm letter perhaps, just how they feel. Letters are lightweight and may travel better tied to rocks. Theoretically.

    It’s good to know you all are doing well in the new living situation. I do hope you find a way to keep blogging… maybe passworded entries? Does this site let you log troublemakers’ IP addresses? (LiveJournal does.) IF it does have to end, then we’ll just have to buy your book, and then you could like, do what Henry Rollins does and publish your journal every year or two. πŸ™‚

    Note from Michael: Yes, I can and do log IP addresses, but it only blocks them from posting comments, not reading. But the whole point of my ending was to make it clear that I am not going to stop. That was the point of the “F You.” I thought about using that Cee Lo Green but I didn’t because the lyrics are about being rejected romantically and I didn’t think that matched. “Crazy” is more condescending and fatalistic, which is why I though it was appropriate- “I can die when I’m done.”

    I’m not done yet.

  12. hey
    Hey I just wanted to say thanks for your blog and I hope you keep telling us how Jani and Bodhi are doing. I am training to be a child psychiatrist and it is so valuable to be able to see things from the ‘inside’ of a family — I follow several blogs of families with children with severe mental illness, and it absolutely changes how I speak to children and families.

    Note from Michael: You see, that’s exactly why I don’t feel like I can go silent. Maybe it protects us but it hurts others.

  13. O0o0oh, okay. I get it. Lol, I fail at reading comprehension today. πŸ™‚

    You’re right, Crazy fits better lyrically. (I heart that entire album. I mean, a Violent Femmes cover? How awesome!) Maybe you just need a .gif of that other one’s chorus…like a welcome mat. ;D (The kinetic text video is so cheery! Such pretty colors!)

  14. Putting It Out There
    I don’t know if you’ve ever happened upon my blog, but I am very blunt and honest about what my life is like living with schizophrenia. I hold nothing back because I don’t want to sugar coat it for anyone that comes along looking for advice or answers. Parents of schizophrenics often ask for advice or at least thank me for giving them a window into their child’s (usually adult child) life. I can’t imagine a threat from someone that would make me shut down my blog. There are too many people out there searching for answers, searching for HOPE. Your blog provides this as I hope that mine does. It gives me hope to see that your family has moved back together. I hold a little celebration for you in my mind. I hope that my blog can do the same for others because voices like yours and mine are so desperately needed. There simply aren’t enough people willing to talk to the media or blog about lives with or as a schizophrenic. It is too stigmatized. It is too unknown. Blogs like these change that. So keep going, please. You are making a huge difference in the world.

    Note from Michael: Thank you, Katherine. And to others, please check out Katherine’s blog at http://www.aschizophrenicandadog.com.

  15. Hush
    Why do you give Jen and the rest ideas? You just let her know that she needs to make more reports, so a judge will raise an eyebrow. In fact, anyone who doesn’t agree with you has an idea now. You are not obligated to divulge every last fact about your lives. Personally, I wouldn’t have mentioned CPS here. How gratifying it must be for Jen to know that her complaint has caused you concern. You fueled her fire by addressing it and now the rest of the anti-Schofield pack could follow, especially since they now know how bothersome it is. You need to filter a bit for the sanctity of your family. You are not being followed by the media, so nobody needs to know your side of the situation. You’re only helping the enemies by showing your map.

    Note from Michael: It’s a balancing act and I’m still learning how to walk it. But releasing the information that if enough calls come in alone does not put us at risk. The calls have be about new information, which Jen doesn’t have. Calls about anything that I’ve written before has already been investigated and dismissed. They can make all the calls they want to CPS but eventually they will get charged for making false claims.

  16. Question
    Omygosh! Michael! I know EXACTLY what you are talking about! Some people are SO stupid! She just has WAY too much time on her hands. She sits at home with her 2 normal kids all day making judgments about other people that she really knows nothing about. I am a teenager, and this sounds like high school drama you know? It sounds like two sixteen year olds bitching at each other. I know its really not your fault, but if you stop responding to her, she will stop talking because she will feel like she is talking to no one. you know?
    but i have a question! Do you have a brother? because i have a professor that looks exactly like you.
    And by the way, I am SO happy that Jani is doing so well, but how is Bodhi? Is he old enough to be observed for signs of autism?

    thank you!

    -Teenager

    Note from Michael: No, I don’t have any siblings. I was an only child. You sure it’s not me? πŸ™‚ (a joke because I am also a professor). As for Bodhi, he has been diagnosed with autism and is going through the assessment process.

  17. I’m glad the move went well and I hope this crazy lady backs off soon… or that you/someone can take action to get her to lay off…

    I’ve read all of the blog entries about Jani and that is part of the reason I decided to try getting help… I went to my college’s counseling center a couple of times but I quit last week. the counselor very strongly implied that I was wasting her time when I fell silent for about 5 minutes because I couldn’t think of how to say what I needed to say. And her response to most of the things I said was “oh wow, that sucks. I’m sorry.” it was really frustrating. I’m looking into finding someone in the community who uses a sliding scale. meanwhile I’m really preoccupied with what my mind is doing to me and I just spent about an hour sitting in the library staring at nothing instead of working on a paper that is due tomorrow. But reading the parts of this post about Jani and Bodhi made me feel better- because your family’s troubles are so much bigger than mine, so if you can do it, I can too. So thanks, I guess is what I want to say.

    Note from Michael: Rachel, you can email us at michaeljohnschofield@me.com and if you feel comfortable sharing your general location then maybe we might be able to help find you a better therapist. No promises because it is worth a shot.

  18. Jani= Genius
    Did they ever figure out why Jani was so smart just coming out of the womb? I have a theory; You know how Schizophrenics mind go really really fast?, well like… what if maybe her mind was going fast, and because of that it developed faster, which made it easier for her to absorb information you know?… maybe… haha. But i have a question. You know how you said bhodi was hard to get to sleep, and didn’t talk very well, and at sometimes, would stare up and cry. Well, i read all your comments, and i read on that said Bodhi is diagnosed with autism, but how is staring up at something and being inconsolable, and not being able to sleep, signs of Autism? (i am not a doctor. I don’t have any kids. I don’t know very much about Autism. I am not implying the diagnosis is wrong) I was just wondering. Also, which end of the spectrum is he on? Is he high functioning or…?

    Thank you so much!
    πŸ˜€

    -Ari

    Note from Michael: He is considered high functioning or “mild to moderate” in terms of school placements. As for your other questions, I really can’t answer. Symptoms are difficult to establish and all mental illnesses have some things in common with other mental illnesses. That is what makes a diagnosis hard to make. My understanding is that he shows enough symptoms of autism to be considered mildly autistic and that will remain his diagnosis unless something drastic changes or we have more information (which is difficult because his verbal skills are not nearly as advanced as Jani’s were-she could articulate from a very young age what she was going through. Bodhi so far cannot).

  19. book
    When will your book be released so i can buy it?, i know i can pre- order it, but when can i actually buy it?
    thanks! πŸ™‚
    -Abby

    Note from Michael: Right now it is scheduled for release on August 7th, 2012.

  20. These anti-psychotic medication people make me crazy. If Jani had type 1 diabetes, would she be calling child services if you were injecting her with insulin? Doesn’t this WarriorMom chick realize you’d cut off your right arms if it meant you didn’t have to medicate your kids?

    I had my first severe depression when I was 8, back in 1969 and tried to kill myself, and all the other severe ones when I was a teenager when I also attempted suicide, it would have been WONDERFUL if there were some kind of drugs that could have helped me, no matter how bad the side effects. My life would be totally different today.

    Don’t get me wrong, it’s fine, I’ve overcome my earlier difficulties — because there are good antidepressants now. Yeah, I don’t like being on meds. They blunt my creativity, and it’s hard to lose weight. But would I have gone further in life with meds 40 years ago? Would I have finished college? Would I have not married my husband out of a desperate fear that I couldn’t make it on my own? How many of my bad decisions or hideous mistakes were made because my neurochemistry was screwed up?

    Grow up, WarriorMom, and mind your own business. These parents are coping magnificently in the face of an overwhelmingly hideous disease, and are doing the best they can for their kid. Stop making their difficult lives even more difficult.

  21. Wow, the amount of effort she’s putting in to harassing you and your family is incredible. I don’t think she hates you, actually, she’s obsessed with you. She definitely sounds like a stalker trying to get your attention! Don’t worry, karma is a bitch, and it will eventually give WarriorBitch the bitch-slapping she deserves. For every wrong that she has done to your family, it will come back at her 10 times harder.

    Michael, I wish you and your family all the best.

    Note from Michael: “Wronged” is strong word. She has issues and I am just the outlet. I hope she finds some peace for herself. Even though I am the target, I would be hypocritical if I condemned her for what seems to be a mental illness of some kind.

  22. This warriormom person needs to get her priorities straight. The Schofields are the warrior parents here, dealing with Jani’s illness everyday and keeping her happy. i admire the courage and strength that you guys have and Jani is incredibly lucky to have parents like you. you make it your top priority to make life as wonderful for Jani as you can, and that is all you can do right now, but you are exceptional at it. i hope one day i grow up to be as wonderful a parent to my own child as you guys are to Jani and Bhodi.

    Note from Michael: Doesn’t mean we are perfect but thank you.

  23. My Point
    Maybe my point was missed or perhaps you were being polite, but my point of privacy may have been misunderstood. nobody needs to know every detail of your family’s lives, whether the details were from today or three months ago. I don’t think it’s that much of a balancing act to keep some things private, like actual dosages of medication or what the medications are. it seems like, for some reason, you and Susan feel the need to expose everything about yourselves. Do you feel that you’re going to be discredited somehow if you don’t tell all now? It appears like some sort of hyper-honesty that’s inspired by the having-nothing-to-hide motto. Unless you feel that the information is going to somehow
    benefit others, I don’t see the reasoning. You and Susan are not obligated to reveal every turn that you make, doctor who you visit, argument that you have, your opinions, or your bodily functions. It seems to me that those who have “questioned” your ways have made you two feel like you’re in a fishbowl – a fishbowl for all to peer into and judge every movement. You’re not in a fishbowl, however. People only know what you tell and, in my humble opinion, you tell too much out of fear. Sure, you can keep dealing with CPS, having cases opened and closed, opened and closed, but do you really feel that’s the best use of your time? Even though you know that the allegations are false, it’s still stressful to have social workers in your home, questioning and probing. I would think that the goal would be to have the most peace within your family as possible. Handing your anti-fan club a loaded gun to shoot as they please will not promote your family’s well being. Another issue I find disturbing is Susan’s invitations to these people, who clearly are trying to dissolve your family, to her show. Are you trying to keep your enemies closer? Maybe using the “killing with kindness” approach or is this the having nothing to hide motto in full force? Why would you give these people a louder voice? They shouldn’t even be acknowledged by you, you’re never going to convince them of anything. No matter what their accusations are, you should not respond. Every time you shout out a “F YOU” you’re stooping to their levels. I mean, really! Like I said, you hand the enemy a map, a loaded gun, instructions and then just roll with it, but I don’t think that
    you realize the greater impact that this is having on you. You are clearly a sensitive man and you’ve even said that the comments hurt – they are bothersome. Having CPS show up is very-very bothersome and stressful. It didn’t need to happen, but you opened the door for an investigation by disclosing partial information. Your stress level directly effects your personal relationships and not for the better. All I ask, for Jani and Bodhi’s sakes, is that you filter what you write. Nobody needs to know the fine details …and you should always leave ’em wanting more anyway.

    Note from Michael: Valid points, Katherine. Thank you. It does come from the “Nothing to hide” and a lot of it was motivated by the sexual abuse claim against me that was the first DCFS investigation. I felt like the only way to defend myself from claims like that was to be as completely open and honest as possible. I do hear you. I just wanted to explain where it came from. That experienced scarred me more than I have let on. I was accused of something I didn’t but had no way to prove it. I was cleared but after that I wanted my life as an open book to try and prevent false claims. Now I find that that too has led to false claims. Kind damned if I do and damned if I don’t. Honestly, I am not sure the best course of action anymore (which is one of reasons why I don’t write as many blogs as I once did).

  24. I hope my donation helps… πŸ™‚ I am so genuinely happy that you and your family are doing so well. I will continue to keep you in my thoughts πŸ™‚

    p.s. Haters are always going to hate… warriormom needs to get a life

    Note from Michael: It does. Thank you very much, Ashley. My book has been accepted by Crown and my next advance check is on its way. It will take a few weeks to get here so it will be a struggle to survive until then so every little bit helps. Thank you!

  25. this might help it worked for me πŸ™‚
    I KNOW I SHOULDN’T BE BUTTING IN ALL OF THE SUDDEN AND TELLING YOU THIS I AM THE SAME LIKE JANI AND MY NAME IS THE SAME AS HER YES…MY NAME IS JANUARY BY DOING THIS I AM PUTTING SOME PRESSURE ON ME AND CONSEQUENCE ARE ON MY WAY .. I WANNA HELP BY TELLING YOU WHAT I DO TO MAKE THEM GO AWAY AND BE AT PEACE DO THE FOLLOWING;

    PLACE A BOWL WITH WATER UNDER THE BED I HAVE 3 SMALL BASIN PLACE UNDER MY BED U CAN PLACE WHERE U REST UR HEAD UR NAVEL AND UR FEET CHANGE THE WATER EACH DAY

    NOW

    PLACE THIS WORDS IN A FORM OF A CROSS ON EACH SIDE OF THE WALLS OF THE ROOM OR UR HOUSE

    +IESUS+
    +NAZARENUS+
    +REX+
    +IUDEORUM+
    +BLESSED VIRGIN MARY+
    +AND THE WORD WAS MADE FLESH+

    I BELIEVE THIS WILL HELP YOU GOD BLESS U

    I PRAY FOR YOU ALL

    LIGHT AND LOVE

    J

  26. Anon
    I just wanted to give you a heads up that Edison replaced their analog meters with digital (smart) meters yesterday. Some people believe that the smart meters are making them sick, though their claims “aren’t supported by science.” There are lots of people making these claims.

    Smart meters use the same type of radiation as cell phones, though the utility company’s claim that they use emit less radiation than cell phones are debatable depending on what metric you use. The smart meters send out a very short pulse at least once every five seconds, and their peak pulse has been measured to be higher than cell phones. Does that matter? Who knows?

    If you guys start having more headaches, tinnitus, etc, you might want to check to see if you live close to a smart meter cluster. Most people aren’t sensitive to these things, so hopefully you won’t be. I just wanted to give you a heads up that your environment might have changed without you realizing it.

    Best of luck to you guys. I’m so glad that you managed to move to a single apartment.

  27. Hope and Harrassment
    Dear Michael and Susan,

    I want to commend you both for your bravery, resilience, and the unconditional love you have for your children. Having grown up with a younger sibling who suffered mental illness when there were few therapeutic options or even a medical acknowledgement of her condition at age 2, I can relate to how an entire family is “drafted” into dysfunction.

    Although my sibling is no longer a child, please know here is hope. While it took decades of guinea pig experimentation with various medications to help manage my sibling’s illness, I believe it was my parents’ unconditional love and their willingness to beg, plead, and suffer public humiliation to get my sibling the services and respect she deserved as a human being.

    Today, my sibling with mental illness is independent. She has finished college, has been able to hold a managerial job for years, and has been able to sustain a long-term, committed relationship. In retrospect, I’m still in awe that someone who suffered two suicide attempts at ages 9 and 14, was institutionalized several times from the ages of 8 through 18, is able to function, and even find happiness in her adult life.

    Growing up in my house was hard. However, I am a better parent, nurse, spouse, sibling, daughter, and friend for it. My parents are still together after 40 years of marriage despite making Dante’s Inner Circle look like a walk in the park.

    There are miracles, but they don’t come easy or even expectedly. Sharing a life and loving someone who has mental illness is an uneven, rocky terrain that leaves many bruises, cuts, and wounds. Yet, even the sun shines down sometimes on a rocky road.

    Medications are needed to manage the symptoms. Yet, it’s unconditional love that helps us experience the beauty of life.

    Please know you are doing all the right things by your child, even if the outcome isn’t always what is desired. To attack mental illness, it requires the most selfless of intentions. Good intentions is not good enough. Please know that those who have walked down this same terrain know that you are in the selfless camp.

    As for the naysayers, they will always exist to condemn, humiliate, and criticize you and your family. In the case of WarriorMom, it appears she may have crossed the line into harassment of your family since she is merely interpreting commentary without any physical evidence. If CPS were to conduct every investigation of every questionable social networking post, I worry for your family that once your book becomes a best-seller, more of them will come out of the woodwork to jump on the publicity bandwagon.

    My greatest hope is that a high-profile attorney will be willing to offer their services pro bono in exchange for the publicity. I do have contacts and would be happy to put you in touch with some if you are comfortable sharing an email where I can privately message you.

    Best wishes for peace and happiness as you and your family continue to walk the path that is never chosen to be traveled, but can only be walked successfully with the most selfless of intentions and hope,

    “Drafted” into Dysfunction

    Note from Michael: Thank you for the kind words. Yes, you can email me at michaeljohnschofield@me.com. I can see your email so as long as you use this one I will know it is you.

  28. just wanted to say a few things
    i sent this same messge to the contact us bit of this website, wasnt sure you would get it, so here it is in comment form:

    ———————————————————————————
    hi there.
    my names jade, im 24 and i live in the UK.
    i first heard about jani on youtube, because i was looking up schizophrenia on there.
    i was amazed how much you go through, how young jani was at the time especially seeing how psychotic she actually appeared.

    Ive just started reading your blog, and will carry on following your story.

    I wanted you to first know, that in the UK, mental health care isn’t much better, we may have the nhs but, it takes a long time to get a diagnosis, and a lot of the doctors don’t agree with what you say, here too they say the old line of “if your not an immediate danger to yourself, then your ok”
    which im sure your aware is the most infuriating thing to hear, since just because you appear ok there, doesn’t mean your ok at home or even an hour later.

    I myself have a psychotic disorder, but it hasn’t been diagnosed as schizophrenia yet, although after 6 years there finally looking into it.

    anyway my main point was that i think there is a blog you would enjoy.

    its about a family in the UK who have a son with schizophrenia, he is much older then jani, but it mirrors most of the stress you go through with the health care system and the heartbreak.
    I highly reccomend it.. if you get time.
    [url]http://mindriddles.blogspot.com/[/url]

    my thoughts are with you, hope your all good as can be
    πŸ˜€

    -jade barrett

  29. Parent
    As a mom of a child who struggles with autism and bipolar, I appreciate your honesty and it is unfortunate that there are those who will have such judgemental opinions. I think if you haven’t lived it, you really don’t get it. So, until WarriorMom lives it, perhaps STFU should be her mantra. BTW, my son was born only 1 week after your Jani. Mental illness…and LEOS to boot! πŸ˜‰

  30. Sad to hear that the tormentors continue…
    My only explanation for such cruelty is that they have not a true clue what we parents of mentally ill children endure on a daily basis. My son was destabilizing badly some weeks ago. One night he had a several hour stint of pure terror and catatonia. All we could do was pray, reassure him, and literally stand there with him. We were dead tired and with hearts breaking–but there was nothing we could do.

    Do parents of ‘normal’ children have any idea of what our lives are like?? Instead of offering a shred of compassion and a good dose of grateful ‘There but the Grace of God go I,’ they judge us, and call CPS on us. By all means, if you suspect a child is abused, call CPS! You may save a life!! But to call CPS on a family you have never met, with motives of hatred and wanting to cause pain…I really don’t know what to say.

    Jen B–What goes around. Remember that universal law. What you do to others will come back and bite ya. >:(

  31. genuine concern
    Sorry, Michael, but I don’t see how you can call Jen WarriorMom’s complaint a false complaint. Doctor’s orders or not, the fact is you HAVE been dosing your kids with Benadryl to shut them up.

    You say you’ve stopped the Benadryl with Jani (though you’re still killing her with all the other stuff). But what about Bodhi? Is it right to be drugging a three-year-old just to get him to sleep more? If he’s having trouble sleeping, you should be comforting him and trying to find out what the matter is, instead of dosing him up with medical drugs. If his mother spent less time on Facebook and more time relating to her own children, then maybe they’d feel more secure and wouldn’t have these problems.

    As for the sexual abuse allegation, I don’t believe you’ve done anything like that. But it’s not unreasonable that other people might think so, as you do admit to sharing a bed with Jani. Do you think it’s healthy for a father to be sleeping with his nine-year-old daughter? No wonder the warriormom was concerned. Not a mentally deranged stalker but someone who is genuinely worried about the way you’re mistreating your children.

  32. the only thing that really bothers me, about this whole tenacious, stressful process, is your attempted suicide….Jani really needs you, and by God she loves you…i can see it in your videos, as she swims with you in the pool, and says “daddy! wednesday’s still swimming!”, and proudly helps you out at the animal shelter…think of how much worse things would be if you just left her here without you in this world, as detrimental as it already is…i hope you have moved beyond that point and will never let that happen again…

    Note from Michael: Yes. That was a long time ago. Almost three years ago.

  33. Prenatal Exposure
    Excuse me if this issue has been covered before but is it possible that your wife was exposed to something terribly toxic during her pregnancy? Your daughter’s behavior and symptoms are startlingly similar to a 12 y/o girl I know whose birth mother was an addict. Now I am not accusing your wife of having abused drugs, I am just wondering if she may have unwillingly been exposed to something so toxic that it caused brain damage to Jani? Something beyond the oxygen depreviation, although I do know how devestating that can be as well.

    Best wishes – I too suffer from mental illness though nowhere near as severe or debilitating as Jani’s. I also have one child with MI – more severe than mine.

    cb

    Note from Michael: We are not aware of any exposure to anything toxic during Susan’s pregnancy with Jani. Being as this was our first child and we were first time parents, we were pretty paranoid about any environmental impacts. Susan stopped drinking Diet Coke and I had already quit smoking (I later went back to it years after Jani was born). Neither one of us took any medication at all at that time. Susan took prenatal vitamins and we had full pre-natal care. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Jani wasn’t exposed to something but if she was I have no idea what. So to answer your question, there is no evidence to suggest that.

  34. In an earlier comment you said you couldn’t block “warriormom”‘s IP from accessing your site… That sounds incorrect. I’ve been put on blacklists before (someone got pissed at me and put me on every blacklist he had access to, long story) and I’m pretty sure I recall being blocked from even accessing a certain site… I mean, obviously she could get around it with a proxy, but by that point it might be time for legal action, anyway.

    If you have a web developer you might want to talk to him or her about that, since how that would be done depends on what kind of server the site is on, I believe. (I’m not a web developer, so this info is based on Googling “block IP from site” and my own personal nerd-experience)

    Note from Michael: Thanks, Torako. I don’t have a web developer right now and the guys who built this site for me haven’t responded to requests for help. I can’t even update the site right now. It’s just me.

  35. Stalker?
    I hope that you find a way to completely block this woman, and if that’s not possible file charges against her for internet misconduct. I wish you and your family the best and we shall hope that you do not have to deal with anymore unfounded claims such as this from someone who has never met you.

  36. Bravo
    I saw your story on a few years ago and for whatever reason last night I thought of your daughter and wanted to look up where she is today. I have found your blog and, altough I don’t know anyone in your situation, I appreciate reading. Far from abusive, is what I see.. you guys are incredible parents. I sit in awe of your whole family. I’ll second that “fuck you” to Jen B.

  37. Bravo
    I saw your story a few years ago and for some reason last night I thought of your daughter and wanted to check in to see where she is today. I don’t know anyone in your situation, but I appreciate reading. Far from abusive, is what I see… you guys are incredible parents and I sit in awe of your whole family. I second that “fu*k you” Jen B.

  38. Good for You!
    I like the F You at the end of this post. I have always wondered how idiots like this woman find the time to meddle in everyone else’s business. I commend you both as parents…I saw the documentary, and I really respect the hell out of you two for doing whatever it took to keep Jani home with you where she belongs! My brother had mental illness (As well as ADHD, a sensory processing disorder and drug addiction) and was killed by police at the age of 18…he was never on any medication- I do believe if he was and if he had gotten treatment he would be alive today. Jani is an amazing little girl and a fighter like her parents- you are all blessed to have each other….

    Note from Michael: I am sorry about your brother. Seems inadequate, I know, but what I can say is that we work every day to make sure that your brother did not die in vain.

  39. Concerned or not, warriormom has never met the family nor does she know anything but what she hears or sees on tv. The people MOST suited to recognize the signs of abuse are all there and none of them have noted anything wrong. A father sleeping with his mentally ill daughter does not automatically mean OH MY GOSH HE’S SICK. My cousin is 15 and has severe downsyndrome. She can’t sleep alone, so usually her mom and sometimes dad stays with her (or at least used to). But she’s mentally disabled, while Jani has an illness that could cause her to HURT herself! So you’d feel better if he slept in another room far away so that the little girl can hurt herself? Or deny her the little rest and safety she can get from sleeping near someone she knows loves her? Don’t be ridiculous. If Jani can only get a little bit of safety and peace a day by sleeping close to her parents, then give her a break.

    Meanwhile, Mr. and Mrs. Schofield, I have not personally dealt with a mental illness as severe as this one but I myself have my own issues and my family does. I’m working towards becoming a nurse so someday I can help people. I commend you guys for finding ways to make your children’s lives better everyday. Keep up the good fight! Lots of love and good will!

    Note from Michael: Thank you. We need nurses who understand child mental illness and understand that behavior is the symptom of a disease.

  40. WOW!
    I watched Jani’s Story the first time it was on, and I am watching the second show now. Actually, its strange that I’m watching talk about moving back in together as a family and reading about it all at the same time.
    My heart goes out to you and your family. I work in the ED at a small hopsital in the high desert of Southern California and since we are in a very transient area, I see my fair share of the mentally ill homeless. I see in your daughter what I have watched in middle aged men and women.
    But what drove me to post something is this…after all you wrote about the one thing that strikes me, and its this. The ending of your blog posting – well said.
    BTW, I did massage for 10 years prior to the job I’m doing now…I think that the “rebel without a clue” swallowed the kool-aid that is sold as “legit” alternative therapy. Also, she needs a colonic. She comes across as full of shit.
    Just my 2 cents.
    Wendy

  41. About Jen
    Judging by the timestamp on this post, Jen started harrassing you around the time she was banned from a forum I used to be a part of. She was posting people’s names and other personal information online. She accused one member of pedophelia and almost got another member fired from their job because of her lies and delusions. This woman is psychotic. She has admitted to having multiple personalities, among other things. I personally think she has paranoid schizophrenia and she’s a sociopath. Good luck to you and your family and I hope this woman gets banned from the internet; or at the very least, gets the help she needs so she’ll stop stalking people on the internet. She is dangerous. Be careful.

  42. Dear Michael and Susan
    Here’s to your courage!
    I have seen you and your family on TV, and am personally touched.
    I trained in psychology and counseling.
    I learned that really, no one knows anything. Every professional muddles along, saying important sounding words from text books, predicting what has already happened and trying, failing, repeating what seemed not to fail.

    Mental illness, as you know, is not like diabetes or a broken leg. No one knows exactly why or how such cruel disorders hurt children and adults so terribly. (Few really know or care to know the horrible destruction and agony of mental illness. There is nothing so evil and cruel) There is control but no cure, and not such good control. 40 years ago “chemical strait jackets” were criticized. What has happened since? More and better drugs?

    Your dedication to your children is an example of heroism to parents. So many give up in a situation like yours.

    It would be wonderful if medical science would rise up to find a cure, or a reason, or some real relief for mental illness in children. A great research effort for a tiny helpless population? Probably not.

    Half the population, or more can get breast cancer. These people vote, shop, spend money and are vocal. Women have been a political force for decades and many have turned their interest to breast cancer.

    Poor little mentally ill children, are voiceless except for their parents, who are overwhelmed, frightened, and ashamed. They are probably broke and divorced as well.

    My beautiful baby son was very atypical. He spoke first at 4 months. He seemed to be a genius. He had extraordinary temper fits. He spent his school days in the “office”. He was teased and tormented. He tormented his teachers, who responded in kind.

    Right or wrong, I chose to keep him away from labels and experts because I thought the first label he got for some made up or vaguely defined disorder some “expert” wrote on a paper would haunt him all his days.

    He turned out not to be severely mentally ill, only very annoying and rather peculiar. He left home early and has made a life for himself. He does not have the life I would choose, but he would not like mine either.

    I was never as brave as you. If I magnify my anguish by 1000 I still cannot comprehend yours.

    You are doing the right things by trying. No one knows the right way when lost at sea or abandoned on an alien planet. All you can do is do something, and keep doing it until things get better or at least not as bad.

    I read a little about some creature focused on hurting you.

    You know that will distract you from your work. Your job is to change the world for your family, and that will change the world for all of us. You are on your way. The stronger and bigger you are, the more critics will see you. The bigger the you are the bigger the critics.

    She turns you in to the “authorities”. So make friends and colleagues of the authorities. Invite them in to shine your light brighter.

    You have to know that for every odd strange person, there are very many more who admire you. And what do you care about anyone’s opinion good or bad? You have your mission.

    God Bless you.

  43. Is the “Furious Seasons” website by this same woman? Because the main point seems to be attacking you guys as abusing Jani who they feel does not have schizophrenia. I’m so sorry you have to deal with this in addition to your daughter’s illness. God bless.

    Note from Michael: No, “Furious Seasons” is not her, although she may have posted there. Furious Seasons is a place for reporting real or perceived abuses by the pharmaceutical industry. The guy who runs it is anti-meds but he has never personally come after me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *