I want to put out a warning to people about the video I’ve posted here. It is very disturbing. This may the first look we have at what post-partum psychosis looks like outside of a clinical setting. Let me make it clear that I am in no way diagnosing this woman; I do not know her well enough to do that. However, I’ve checked into the background of this story and according to Lily Moore’s defensive statements of her daughter to Memphis Foxnews13, the mother in this video suffers from Schizophrenia and had been off her medication due to not wanting to harm her baby during pregnancy.
The decision Lily Moore’s daughter made to discontinue her medication during pregnancy is a common and controversial one. Understand that despite her mental illness I could never support this woman losing access to her children. To separate them would be a tragedy that would affect those children for the remainder of their lives. My mother and her siblings were not just taken from my Schizophrenic grandmother, they were separated in the process and the damage that action did to my family has been evident for two generations. Now before you think I’m crazy, notice that I said this woman should have access to her children and not unsupervised control. Everyone has failed this woman and her children. Everyone. From her mother to the doctor’s that provided her prenatal care, to the doctor’s supervising her mental health care, they all dropped the ball on this one. When a pregnant woman admits to having a mental illness during the prenatal work up, that should automatically place her in the high-risk category and if nothing else should place staff on alert for a more intense postnatal follow-up. Furthermore, family and friends should have never left her alone with a newborn.
The baby in the video was unharmed and is now in the care of her maternal grandmother Lily Moore. However, Moore can’t just blow off her daughter’s actions as her not being on her medication and just hope that all the attention goes away. The attention will no doubt die down, but her mental illness will never go away and she needs to rally her entire family around them for support. If you know that someone suffers from mental illness and they have children, please make an extra effort to keep track of them and assist them in every way possible. Their illness is no different from cancer, heart disease, or diabetes. It disables them from normal human functioning and just like someone that has lost a limb, they need constant assistance. Mental Health reform is not just an imperative necessity in this country, it’s an emergency. This video is a prime example of how we are not just failing the mentally ill, but it shows how we are failing the children of the mentally ill. I hope the Memphis police and Child Protective Services handle this situation appropriately. The odds are against them because they’ve come in so late in the game. But for the rest of us, we can take care of each other. If you know your neighbor is not wrapped too tight, show up once a week with $20.00 worth of groceries or household supplies and help where you can. We can’t just leave these people alone and say it’s not my problem. Horrible things like this video will happen when we do. Even the father recording this event tries to say that he has, “nothing to do with this”. We are just as criminal as he is when looking on and do nothing to help. And for the record, he should face charges for doing just that.
Here’s the video in case you missed it: