MentalHealthRightsYES - for Mental Health Rights
07/23/2012 And Yet Another Mother's Story
Rose's Story:
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According to Ronnie’s adoptive mother, Rose, his birth mother starved him as a child to the point where he suffered brain damage and other physical effects. Rose worked with him until he was able to walk, but he never completely recovered fully. He grew up missing a lot of school and attending special classes when he went. Naturally, he did not graduate, and at age 20 he ended up in an argument over eight dollars with another young man, with Ronnie ending up taking the money from his wallet.
The police became involved, and Ronnie, black, was arrested even though the other boy, white, didn’t press charges. The DA charged Ronnie  and he was jailed. Because of his disability, he was unable to understand the charges against him and deemed incompetent. In doing so, the justice system put Ronnie into a torturous treadmill that has lasted over a year. (As of April 10, 2013 Ronnie is still lockked up at Western hospital, even though he finally was rransferred to the civil side january 2013.
The way this works in Washington is that the incompetent accused must stay in jail until there is an opening at Western State Hospital. During that waiting period, Ronnie, despite his disabilities, was put into isolation in the jail, which made him “go berserk” said Rose. Thus this prevents Ronnie from having his da in court and but prolongs his stay in jail without a trial. When he was finally transferred to Western, he was placed in the criminal section of the hospital, even though he was not convicted of any crime. While there, says his mother, he was drugged so heavily he could barely speak at times, and she was not allowed to visit him or send him anything (except 3 times in an entire year). (update : July 31, 2012--Rose joined the two MOMS  after their 100 mile walk to the hospital, and  visited CEO Jess jamison. She shared her distress about Ronnie being unable to talk, Ronnie was able to talk within two weeks, making us question whether Ronnie was being experimented on.)
She and others whose loved ones have been patients at Western State confirm that these patients are deprived of fresh air, visitation and other basic rights if they refuse to go to classes or obey in other ways. Rose explained that Ronnie was so drugged he was too sleepy and tired to attend the classes, and therefore he was denied these basic rights - rights the hospital advertises on its website that as important to treatment:
"Visits and communication with family members and significant others is encouraged as it plays an important role in treatment."
What’s worse is that after three months at Western, when doctors decided Ronnie was then competent to stand trial, he was sent back to the jail in Bellingham WA, where the staff refused to continue the medication, without allowing Ronnie to withdraw gradually, which is documented throughout the scientific and medical literature as necessary to prevent severe withdrawal symptoms and worsened psychiatric conditions. So once again, instead of giving Ronnie the proper medical help and acknowledging his disability, he was put into isolation and deemed incompetent. The entire process had to be repeated, and repeated again.
There remain questions as to way the DA pursued this case against Ronnie, and why, for taking $8, he was charged with grand theft.
But Ronnie’s story is not an isolated one. Cindi and other moms have testified to how this system is destroying their children, and recent scientific literature is focusing on how too many children and adults are being placed on psychotropic drugs unnecessarily and kept on them too long, which, according to Robert B. Whitaker’s compiled research in Anatomy of an Illness, is actually creating an epidemic of chronic mental illness in America and other developed countries.
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