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OT: Disturbing Story

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Old 10-26-2004, 02:54 PM   #1
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Unhappy OT: Disturbing Story

I almost didnt post this. This story has really disturbed me greatly. I am just thankful that this poor woman is in a better place now. It just makes me even more thankful that I have a supportive husband and all you great people at 3fc.
This isnt meant to offend, I just thought in by sharing this story, it can make us all appreciate the support we have.

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/localne...body_0818.html
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Old 10-26-2004, 04:33 PM   #2
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I heard about this story back in August on another site. It is very sad in so many different ways.
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Old 10-26-2004, 04:38 PM   #3
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Gosh... that is just heartbreaking.
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Old 10-26-2004, 04:41 PM   #4
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what a story! kind of made me want to throw up.
So the big question is.. when do we become responsible for each other? sounds like her boyfriend left and she died within a week or two.
She was so young.. I wonder about mental illness with her... could that have been a factor too. She was depressed.
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Old 10-26-2004, 04:47 PM   #5
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I dont know, but did you listen to the 911 tape? There was a link for it on the left side of the page. The operator asked if she had heart problems and they didnt even know.

It just seems like the family was way too busy getting into trouble to help her out. I mean how long would it have taken to spend a few minutes a day cleaning her up,..talking to her,.. or even picking up the phone to get some help.

I am just so thankful for hubby and 3fc. I do agree that depression was involved, but in a situation like that, I think anyone would be depressed. My heart breaks for her :-(
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Old 10-26-2004, 04:58 PM   #6
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That poor woman. I feel so awful that there are people who seem to just "fall through the cracks". It seems like she had some family...but no-one who would help her. Yes, she was a grown woman with her own free will, but it seems to me like *somebody*, *anybody* should have helped her. I am glad you posted this, it does really make me appreciate my health, even if I am overweight.
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Old 10-26-2004, 05:24 PM   #7
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oh... I hate debates... (because I'm never on the majority)
but....
I have to disagree with you on this

"I mean how long would it have taken to spend a few minutes a day cleaning her up,..talking to her,.."

I would not want someone to be alone like that - but what happened to personal responsibility? She broke her leg twice - once she recovered. I believe that one has to want to help themselves too. Should we help out family just because they don't want to help themselves when they are capable? I believe in helping people out - the question for me is - to what extent? Had she ever asked for help - maybe not from her family but from a doctor? she may not of had insurance - but in this country you can walk into an er an not have to pay.

We don't know what she wanted.

I really don't want to step on anyone's toes here.. honestly

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Old 10-26-2004, 05:29 PM   #8
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Oh i understand what you mean. even if she didnt want help, they could have least kept the house in a more decent state. I was assuming she wanted help, you are right, I didnt think that maybe she didnt. But still,... the enviroment itself could have been better at the very least
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Old 10-26-2004, 06:13 PM   #9
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But in this country, mental health programs are not considered ER kind of stuff. No, this woman should have been helped because she was sick. Yes, there is personal responsibility but only if you have the mental capability to have that responsibility. If you are so depressed that you allow your skin to become fused to a couch, I think you are have crossed beyond being able to ask for help.

I disagree with the attitude that you should be able to ask for help to receive it. She was muted by her disease. She was so scared to leave the couch, she became paralyzed by it.

This happens in the elderly all the time, they have an injury scary enough that they don't want to go through the pain of it again, so they refuse to get out of bed. This happened to the woman twice. If she had been eledery, there would be no question that this was neglect. Just because this woman's disease was obesity as well as a significant mental illness doesn't make it less of an atrocity that she was ignored.
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Old 10-26-2004, 06:20 PM   #10
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Wow. I can't believe stuff like this happens.

Personal responsibilities or not... I've got to believe that if that became me, someone, ANYONE would help me.

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Old 10-26-2004, 06:30 PM   #11
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I read this story back in August and it was quite different than the story told here. They never mentioned the broken legs or anything but it was plainly put that the woman refused to leave the couch and when her boyfriend tried to force her, she refused. Anyway, it is a sad story and I feel for her.
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Old 10-26-2004, 06:32 PM   #12
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It just makes me sad that she had to go that way,I mean dirty,lying in your own excrement,imagine how she felt when the paramedics had to put on safety gear just to get her out of her own house,Obviously they supplied her with enough food to sustain her weight,so why couldn't her family get her the help she desperately needed.It's is illegal to keep an animal in those conditions and between her obvious weight problem and depression she was in no shape to help herself.I think the boyfriend should be held accountable for letting this woman get so sick.I mean the couch was woven into her back.Can you imagine it?She was probably so ashamed of the condition of herself that she was too embarrased to call someone for help.Would you let your mother,father,sister,child survive like that and not do something?May god be with her.
A big man like that died here a few years ago,I live in a small town so everyone knew of him.Although he was looked after physically,he had major health problems from his weight was told to go on a diet or he was going to die.He was found dead in his bed from a heart attack at the age of 37.They had to take the railing off of the stairs to get him out.It took 12 people to lift him out of the house.And I felt sorry for him that he couldn't do what he needed to do to live.
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Old 10-26-2004, 06:45 PM   #13
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This truly is a heartbreaking story. It's hard to know what all was or wasn't done or what should or could have been done. We don't know all the pieces of the puzzle and the main player is no longer her to tell her side of the story.

I just pray that Gayle's soul is at peace and that those left behind are able to cope with what happened. It is a reminder to us all though that we have to take care of ourselves and each other.
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Old 10-26-2004, 07:24 PM   #14
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Maybe she could have helped herself maybe not. However there is no excuse for her family to leave the house or her in that condition. I think of my mom living downstairs and if she became where she could not get around then I am the one responsible to take care of her. Even if it was by choice to not go out or she refused the help. I still have that responsibility to take care of her. Her family is scum as far as I'm concerened. And no one should be left to live that way even if they say they want to be left alone. If she was saying that and refused help she is clearly not in her right mind and needs help.

I see so many saying it's not my responsibility to(Fill in the Blank). Think if our parents took that attitude. Where would we be. We are responsible to help our family. That is a basic principle.
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Old 10-26-2004, 11:31 PM   #15
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Unfortunately in today's society it doesn't come down to responsibility, you can only care for yourself. If you go out of your way to help other people, you generally get used. And while it would have been nice for her family to help her out, they definitely had issues. And when you are dealing with something big (like robbing people to likely survive) you really CAN only think about yourself. And who would she had gone to for help? To doctors? Doesn't it cost to see a doctor? Doesn't it cost for antidepressants (if she was indeed depressed)? It's clear she didn't have much money, so where does all of that come from? And if you are depressed, you aren't seeing yourself as a priority, so why would you care about yourself? And if you do have family around, and they are pretty self involved, why would they want to be around someone who is depressed when they aren't exactly making it either? There are just so many questions and possibilities, but honestly, I think it comes down to that almighty dollar. If you are in a higher class you know about depression and the treatment for it, and you have the ability to seek out help. When you are poor you are so focused on making it to the next paycheque so you can somehow survive, you don't have the ability to dream or hope for something better.. and I say this from experience. It's a really sad story, and I feel for her.

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