Sunday, September 25, 2005

When the phone rings at 3:00 AM, a parent loses a few years of their life. It's never good news, the best you can hope for is a wrong number. At 3:00 AM Sunday morning, our phone rang - it was Kyle's girlfriend. He had been severely beaten by some people they tried to kick out of their apartment. They were taking him to the hospital. We met them there, and after X-Rays and CAT scans, it was determined that Kyle had a fractured skull and a broken jaw. Also, they were watching him for signs of internal issues, he took several kicks to the ribs. Luckily, the fractured area of his skull is into his sinus cavity, and is not life threatening. It's a divot that looks like he might have been hit hard by a golf ball.

A quick synopsis of the issues leading up to this. There had been a 19 year old kid that had been crashing at their apartment. They wanted to get rid of him, and finally last night they told him to leave. As he was gathering his things he grabbed a Play Station that belonged to one of the people living in the apartment. Kyle told him to leave that there, and when he went to take it from him he was jumped by 4 other kids. One of the kids had brass knuckles, and that's likely what caused the damage to Kyle.

They filed a police report at the hospital. A few hours ago, a roommate that had been at the hospital with Kyle went home, and found that same kid still sleeping in their apartment. He called us, and we called 911. The police responded, and said they couldn't do anything. The kid had no warrants, and the report filed earlier had not been entered, and for some reason the officers said it was a misdemeanor. They had no reason to keep this kid, so they told him to gather his things and take off. They then informed me that it appeared Kyle was the only person of legal age in that apartment, and they had been hearing about several parties involving kegs of beer each week at this apartment. They suspected Kyle of buying the beer for these large parties of underage kids. It's starting to look like there's no way for Kyle to pursue this without getting himself into serious trouble.

We are very much conflicted right now. We love him dearly, but if he goes back to this apartment he'll likely find himself in jail again before long. We really don't want him living here, we think it would be a bad and potentially dangerous environment for our other kids. He can't hold a job, and he obviously has a serious drinking (and maybe drug) problem.

One of 2 scenarios will probably happen. First, we try to get him into the military. I am VERY much opposed to the war in Iraq, and I feel the same kind of compassion that is accorded, depending on political party, to unborn babies or death row inmates, should be extended to soldiers when at all possible. In other words, respect for life is THE OVERRIDING philosophy that drives me. Life in any form, born or unborn, deserves the same respect as any other life. Kyle feels the same way, and doesn't want to fight. But he would be an excellent and compassionate medic, or other similar job.

The second scenario is that we go to court to have him declared incompetent. He then is eligible for medicare, and can have some kind of normal health care. But we are NOT WILLING to be his guardians. And this also assumes he is found to be incompetent. Kyle's last full work-up indicated only depression. Well, we know there's more going on than that, and he's so brilliant he can make them believe anything he wants them to believe.

I'll keep you all updated over the next day or two. Kyle doesn't have insurance, so they won't keep him hospitalized any longer than necessary. But he needs to have surgery to put a pin in his jaw, and to fix the fracture in his forehead. And because he was throwing up blood, they'll be watching that, also. His lower lip is hamburger, so the blood could have been swallowed from there. They'll keep an eye on him and call us if necessary.

I just read some of your story. Our son also with bipollar and also named Kyle! He just turned 19 in Dec. As I'm reading I feel as if you are talking about our Kyle. Just about 6 weeks ago our son did try to kill himself. We ended up putting him in a state Mental Hospital for for about 10 days. He is now on meds and going to meetings but still can not keep a job and is now filing for disability. Like you I see a song that will never end. But on the other hand what else is he to do? I feel for you and for all the parents that have to watch there child go through this. mk
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