A letter to my son. David.

David,

As I write this I am faced with the reality that you are being moved further from our home.  From your family.

I wish that things could be different.

David, you have a multifaceted mental illness.  As a result of this, we do not feel that it is safe for you to live at home.  It isn’t that we don’t love you or want you.

We need for you to be safe from harm.  We need for others to be safe from harm.  It has been difficult to make the decisions to place you in residential psychiatric care.  We took you in.  We adopted you into our home and our hearts.

I could never be prouder than I am of you, and all that you have accomplished in your short life.

I wish that I could undo the life you had before you were born.  Undo the hardships that it has caused in your life.  In the end though, those hardships make you who you are.  I can’t take that away from you.  It is as much a part of your personality as my health conditions are a part of mine.

— A little story —

A long time ago there was a young man who was troubled by the life he was leading.  A good friend told him he had two options.  Option one led to a good life, a family and home.  Option two led to a hard life, likely prison time and other difficulties.  The young man chose Option one.  Met his bride and was married, a few children later, they had a family.  And in time, he came to know and love a young man named David.  His family adopted David into their home.

—–

So I give you two options David.

Option One leads to a good life.  Possibly one at home with your family.  Option One leads to an awareness of yourself and your conditions.  It will allow you to live with and manage your mental health in a positive manner.   Option One will be a lot of work and it won’t be easy.  I have faith that you can do it successfully.

Option Two.  Well, I imagine that Option Two can lead to a life of heartache. Option Two could lead to long term isolation in a clinical facility, or worse yet, a prison.  Option two will be a difficult life for you.

In the end, no one can make the choice for you.  The decision is yours, my son.  I can find people to help you develop the tools to live successfully with mental illness.  However, I can’t force you to accept the help and lessons that they will impart on you.

I know at twelve this seems like the end of your world.  I may not have experienced the mental illness part of your world, but I have been where you are.  I pray that you make a positive decision.

Regardless of your decision, you will always have a home where ever we live. You will always have a place in our heart.

You will always be our son.

We do this because we love you.   I pray that you understand some day.

Even though you are far away from home, we will still see you. You are still very important to us.

Love,

Dad.

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