Liza Long's little boy is a high-IQ math whiz who likes Greek mythology and Einsteinian physics. But when she tells the 13-year-old to change his pants, he can fly into a murderous rage: “You’re a stupid bitch," cries the boy—let's call him Michael. "I can wear whatever pants I want to. This is America. I have rights!" Then she'll rush him to a hospital to treat whatever mental illness he has—autism, ADHD, they're not sure. "I am sharing this story because I am Adam Lanza's mother," writes Long at Slog. "I am Jared Loughner's mother. I am Seung-Hui Cho's mother."
Long handles Michael on a fit-by-fit basis, hiding sharp objects or hugging him close whenever he becomes an enraged little monster. Then he usually comes home from the hospital sweet as pie with a new prescription—until next time. Social workers say Long could charge him with a crime that lands him in prison, but that's hardly appealing. What she really wants is help: "In the wake of another horrific national tragedy, it’s easy to talk about guns," she writes. But "it's time for a meaningful, nation-wide conversation about mental health. That's the only way our nation can ever truly heal." Click for Long's full column.