A Boise mother named Liza Long posted a story Friday on her blog, The Anarchist Soccer Mom, in response to the mass shooting in Connecticut, where a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown after killing his mother earlier that morning. The gunman then took his own life inside the school.
The motive of the gunman, Adam Lanza, is not yet known, and there has been no official statement released about the state of Lanza's mental health. There has been speculation that the 20-year-old gunman had Asperger's syndrome, but that has not been confirmed. With the details of what led to Friday's tragic events still unfolding, the shooting caused Long to write and publish a blog post about life with her mentally ill 13-year-old son. The post went viral.
"I live with a son who is mentally ill. I love my son. But he terrifies me," wrote Long in the post that was shared on social media as 'I Am Adam Lanza's Mother.'"
Some on Facebook and Twitter are calling Long heroic for speaking so candidly about her fear of her son. Others, like anthropologist Sarah Kendzior, have accused her of violating her son's privacy (Long used a pseudonym in the post for her son, but not for herself).
Long and Kendzior have issued a joint statement, saying: "We are not interested in being part of a 'mommy war'. We are interested in opening a serious conversation on what can be done for families in need."
What do you think about Long's blog post? Is it helping to further a national conversation about treating mental illness? Or do you agree with Kendzior? Comment below.
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Kristi Palma, Boston.com Moms producer, is the mom of a first grader and a preschooler. She is a writer who enjoys cooking her grandmother's Italian recipes (when her son isn't launching paper airplanes into them). Follow her on Twitter @kristipalma.