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Topic : 06/28 Silent Darkness

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Created on : Friday, February 23, 2007, 02:11:45 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
(Original Air Date: 02/28/07) Most parents find raising a child overwhelming enough, but imagine if your child could neither see you, nor hear you. Now imagine having that child times three. Liz is the mother of deaf and blind triplets. Her three daughters are now 6 years old, but one of the girls communicates at a 2-year-old level, and the other two at only a 10-month-old level. Liz's world is consumed with their 24-hour care, plus the care of her oldest daughter, who is 10 and often overlooked among the chaos of the triplets. After years of dealing with the girls on her own, a new man stepped into Liz's life to fill the shoes of her ex-husband. George thought he could become Liz's hero, but their relationship has been strained from the start, and the stress is tearing them apart. See what a day in Liz and George's lives is like, and the surprises Dr. Phil has in store for them. Plus, meet an inspirational woman who says her world turned from light to dark at the age of 15. She has a message for George and Liz. Join the discussion.

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February 28, 2007, 6:42 am CST

I feel their pain

Hello all,

 

I have a beautiful 6 yr. old daughter who is undiagnosed. She has a uncontrollable seizure disorder, feeding tube, trach, has to be cathed 2 times a day, cannot walk, talk, sit up etc.  I also have a special needs husband who at 34 suddenly got sick with a mysterious illness that left him with a brain biopsy, complete memory loss, and a seizure disorder. Not to mention that my dad suddenly died of a massive heart attack after my husband was only in the hospital for 3 days. My mom does not drive and was married to my dad for over 40 years and mainly depended on him. I now have my daughter to keep up with I also have a very energetic 4 yr. old son, my husband , my mom, and did I mention that 8 months after my dad died my 40 yr. old sister died in her sleep and left 3 young children and a husband who I also help as much as I can.  My husband is much better but still suffers from memory loss. He still cannot remember our wedding or th ebirth of our son. And still forgets things from month to month or week to week.  Everybody is amazed that I can keep a smile on my face. I probably should be in a nut house right now. I am only 37 and have indured so much in such a short time. You do what you got to do. You either thow in the towel or roll with the punches. I take things one day at atime and do the best i can do. I constantly pray that God give me strength, keep me sane, and keep me healthy as possible. i feel like I can't afford to get sick because so many people depend on me. Can anyone out ther relate to my story?

 
February 28, 2007, 6:45 am CST

move to south carolina

Dr. Phil,

 Please tell this family to moove to South Carolina. They may find better services to aid with their children.

 

Thanks

 
February 28, 2007, 6:56 am CST

Similar exsperience

I am a 22 year old mother of a 3 year old blind child. My child was born blind and as a parent I am often kept up at night worrying about her future. I often wonder about how to explain things such as colors to her. I also worry about how to instill self confidence in her. I often think about how she is going to be treated once she gets in to her middle school and high school years. It was very uplifting to hear from Jennifer Rothschild. She has accomplished so much and has so much confidence in her self. I can not wait to pick up her book.
 
February 28, 2007, 7:26 am CST

Special Parents

My heart goes out to this family.  I have a special needs daughter, Annie, who was born with cerebral palsy due to a common virus I contracted while pregnant.  The scenario of leaving the NICU thinking all will be well only to have devastating news later in still fresh in my memory.  We discovered gradually that Annie was severely brain damaged at 5 months of age, then discovered that the little bit of hearing she had would fade to nothing.  Even if she could hear, the part of the brain that understands "language" was ruined by the virus in utero. The fact that she could lose her vision too was also possible.  Thank God she retained her vision.  My husband and I rode this emotional and physical roller coaster, too, while trying to make a normal home for our older son, Ian, who had no special needs.  I understand the guilt of feeling that the older sibling is neglected, I cannot imagine having my difficulties multiplied by three!  I found that my biggest source of help came from an early intervention group run by Loudoun Co. (Virginia)  Department of Mental Retardation.  They offered therapies for the babies as well as a support group for the parents where we could all share our feelings, grief, hopes, and most importantly resources.  My next great source of help was the Special education division of Loudoun Co. public schools.  From pre-school Annie was loved and well cared for by gifted and caring professionals.  Her school hours were my respite care.  She is now 18 and we are in the process of finishing high school and transitioning into an adult world.   My husband and I went through some very difficult times as well as some very rewarding times, and though I did not choose to raise a special needs daughter, I feel it happened for a reason and is my highest accomplishment, although I will never be "finished" being her mom.  I have made plenty of mistakes, also. The most crucial thing for parents in this situation is to take care of themselves first.  If you fall apart you are of no use to the ones who need you the most.  Respite care is crucial, and without guilt.  Our politicians need to be aware of just how crucial this need is and to keep it funded.  Easter Seals is an excellent organization.  Their summer camp is the highlight of our year when Annie gets time with peers, and we get a vacation without her daily care to "recharge" our batteries.  Please feel free to contact me.  I would love to communicate with this family should they ever need to talk to someone who had been through some of what they are going through. My heart goes out to you all! God bless.

 

 Christi Abercrombie

 
February 28, 2007, 7:29 am CST

02/28 Silent Darkness

Liz George i know you both believe in the power of the lord, and through your true belief his power can work your miracle take the triplets to the place where the virgin Marys image appears on a cookie sheet place each child's right hand upon the image there is where your miracle will happen louse not your faith go take these children where i said it will happen for you god has not forgotten your devotion and faith in him, the image came to give you and your children his blessings and a miracle
 
February 28, 2007, 7:34 am CST

overwhelmed

I can't imagine having one handicapped child alone 3. I would like to do the superman thing but know I couldn't. And no matter how superly she wants to be, I feel it is best to place them in the best place possible for them, come and visit them daily all day if you want, but go home alone, get a good nights sleep and enjoy the one child you do have and enjoy this one man that loves you.  Be happy with what you can do something about and let professionals help with your children.  You are not writing them off, you are giving them a better life suited for them with professionals who can deal with this situation. I wish you the best of luck.
 
February 28, 2007, 7:36 am CST

Touch My Heart

This Story Touch My Heart. My Prayers Go out ot the Family!!!  I look for the ling to by the DVD an i did not see it
 
February 28, 2007, 7:37 am CST

We are humbled in your presence

Bless their hearts.  I will pray for them.  I am so very impressed with Liz, what an inspiration.

 
February 28, 2007, 7:42 am CST

02/28 Silent Darkness

Dr Phil i know you have seen and know where the virgin Marys image came to the cookie sheet take this family there and have Liz place the children's right hand on the image there you will wittiness a miracle.
 
February 28, 2007, 7:44 am CST

You know you can do it, too!

Quote From: homies4hoodies

I am a 22 year old mother of a 3 year old blind child. My child was born blind and as a parent I am often kept up at night worrying about her future. I often wonder about how to explain things such as colors to her. I also worry about how to instill self confidence in her. I often think about how she is going to be treated once she gets in to her middle school and high school years. It was very uplifting to hear from Jennifer Rothschild. She has accomplished so much and has so much confidence in her self. I can not wait to pick up her book.

A woman I know well from my son's school has a daughter of small stature ("little person"). Michele is treated as regulary as all the other 8th graders. And she always has been. Her parents placed her in private school for the sole person of her having to wear a uniform. This girl cannot wear the stylish clothing of her peers, so the uniform worked great. Michele is involved in sporting events for little people (she's very competitive) She is a fantastic roller blader, water skiier and she attends school dances, flirts with the boys and is filled with self-confidence. Her parents and only sister are of normal size. Michele attends a "little people" camp each summer and e-mails those friends throughout the year.

 

The reason Michele is doing so well academically, socially, etc. is DUE TO HER PARENT'S. They have worked so hard to treat Michele no differently than their other daughter. They are a close knit family...attending church weekly, being involved in sports and other hobbies. etc. The kids at the Catholic school LOVE Michele and you will never see her being treated differently.


What I am trying to tell you is that YOU are the one who will make all the difference in your daughter's life. Involve her in all the regular events that she can possible take part in, talk with her about her strengths, not her weaknesses. Involve her in events for the blind, as well. Expand her circle of friends. Keep her active. Accentuate the positive. You CAN do it and I can tell from your post that you KNOW you can do it! The ball is in your court. God  bless you. I'm sure your daughter will one day look back and truly appreciate the great quality of life you provided for her.

 
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