• Call Now: 405.341.3554
  • Connect

Edmond Family Counseling Articles

Articles by the Counselors at Edmond Family Counseling

Parkland Shooter

Monday, April 09, 2018

By: Quinton Ellis, LPC

As a person, I can offer you no comfort about events like the recent school shooting in Florida, As a therapist, I may, in some respects, be able to offer even less. I have a master’s degree in counseling psychology and years of experience in my field – but in many regards, your guess is as good as mine as to how these tragedies happen. Surely, some people and agencies were asleep at their desks, but I also imagine that a lot of people bent over backwards for that young man and now, despite all their efforts, they will have those attempts grinding away at their hearts and minds forever. 

As I reflect, I do not think my involvement could have saved those innocent kids at Douglas High School in Parkland. How do you get those thoughts out of someone’s head? Talking someone back from suicide is hard enough, and no sure thing, but homicide? Mass homicide? That is indicative of a mind swimming way out there where the sharks are. We can certainly debate how he got that far out, but one thing is clear for mental health professionals, we’re going to need a much bigger boat.

All this is to say that there are unique limitations to mental health therapy that we cannot wish away. Indeed, all helping professions operate under the premise that the person you are helping actually wants your help – that they want to get better, or healthier, or closer to normal. Evidently, this young man had several points of contact with mental health professionals prior to turning 18. I feel relatively comfortable assuming that he was an…unmotivated client/patient. Another of mental healthcare’s limitations is the legal limitation of what can and cannot be done and the subsequent timing of those actions. Even law enforcement has its hands tied. As I imagine the 39 times 911 was summoned to the murder’s home over the years, I am certain that several of the officials were frustrated, having looked him in the eye, and considering the circumstances, that they could not just build a prison around his home right at that moment.

It seems, 99% of the time, we Americans can be and are proud of our rights and freedoms – that youthful mistakes, bad/dark jokes or threats are not reasons to deprive someone of their long- term liberties. However, most everyone agrees that this person was truly dangerous, mainly because he told them repeatedly that he was dangerous. We do not imprison people for bleating about crimes they have not yet committed. It’s a wager we gladly accept until such a time as this, when even 1% feels like an impossible high price to pay for such ideals.

I do actually have one suggestion – a plea really. If you do feel like a person is headed out to the shark infested waters, please document, in whatever way is available to you that person’s words and behaviors. Audio recording is ideal. Audio recording is passive while video is confrontational and likely to provoke the person you are scared of, or for into breaking…at least your phone. Your phone has a voice recorder, and you should become familiar with using it. They can do an excellent job of picking up voices even from your pocket at a considerable distance. Because sick and dangerous people are often not forthcoming about how sick and dangerous they are, these recordings (and other assorted documentation, eg. pictures of destruction, etc.) are essential to proving to therapists, doctors, and authorities, that this person poses a much greater threat to themselves or others than he or she is willing to amit. This can mean the difference between actual intervention and business as usual.

For many reasons, I darkly suspect that there will be more rather than fewer of these kinds of horrors in our future. If you are looking for hope, as I am, there were at least two stories in recent weeks about foiled plots similar to the one in Florida. One of those would-be killers was reported by his own grandmother after she read his murder diary. I do wish all of the therapists in his prison luck, if there is such a thing for prison therapists.

Please know, that our agency is deeply committed to furthering issues of mental health in the community. Edmond Family Counseling’s doors are always open to you and your family and your support is appreciated. To learn more, check out http://edmondfamily.org or our Facebook page: http://facebook.com/edmondfamilycounseling.


Post has no comments.
Post a Comment

Captcha Image

Trackback Link
Post has no trackbacks.

Recent Posts


Conflict Communicating with your teen Divorce Trauma Opiods Exercise treatment for depression Isolation in teens Drug Use Disability Positive Reinforcement Facebook Food Allergies How to recognize domestic violence Edmond How do children process trauma Retirement Schedule 1 Drug Microagression Divorce School Darcy McConnell Joshua and Rebecca Weigel Hanna Baker Positive Thinking Edmond Family Counseling Communication techniques for couples Underage Drinking Community Suicide Prevention Programs United States Drug Enforcement Agency Depression Parenting and Cell Phones Belinda Crosier Impact of Suicide Dr. Rhonda Patrick National Drug Threat Assessment Summary Suicide Prevention for Teens Why did the system fail Girl Strong Learning Oklahoma drug use Heroin Crisis 710 Teen Jobs ADHD Family Roles Stress Peers Prescription Drugs Sanjay Gupta Working Parents Limitations of counseling Scapegoating College Campus Independent Living Social anxiety Newsletter Boundaries Butane Hask Oil Ridley Scott Edmond drug use School Anxiety Twitter Parkland Shooter Young Adults Oklahoma Department of Human Services Panic attacks Elizabeth Loftus Early Treatment of Depression Teenagers College Transitions Sheila Stinnett Tumblr What Matters Most Program Siblings in Conflict Dr. Ben Carson Technology Emotional Development Summer Plans for Teens Ben Carson Co-Parenting Class Millenials Setting Boundaries for Your Teen How long should counseling take What to do when you are laid off Teens and cell phones Parenting Teenagers HK pen How prevalent is domestic violence Suicide Divorce with minor children Personality Test Mild-Depression Choices Presidential debate Donald Miller Edmond Municipal Court Childhood depression The Miracle Worker How to detect signs of depression Captain of Your Ship Cell Phones Help for panic and anxiety Apps for Teens Domestic violence resources Wax non-verbal communication Supersurvivors Al McCormick Self Image 13 Reasons Why NOT How many sessions do I need Positive Illusions Culture DIY Marriage counseling Fidget Spinners Edmond Character Council self-sabotage What Really Matters Teens Use of Technology Political Correctness When Teens Should Get a Cell Phone Bong Annie Sullivan Butane Honey Oil Grandparent Initiative Golden Child Marijuana Marriage counseling Support Group AARP Risk taking ADA Unemployment and depression Great Depression Addiction Chad McCoy Codependency Disciplining Teens Reading Family Systems Theory Panic Disorder Waxing Holiday stress Suicide Prevention Recommendations Discipline 13 Reasons Why Setting Boundaries with Adult Children Retirement Planning Teen Drug Use New year’s resolution Role Models Marriage Mayme White Miller Enabling Adult Children Self Investment Unemployment high school Happiness Prom safety Child Development Feldman and Kravetz Twenty Somethings Normalcy Helen Keller How common are panic attacks Teens and Time Management Teenage Boys Call of Duty spring Learning Disabilites Fear Organization Spanking Negative Thinking Grandparents as parents Teen Parenting The Amazing Race Eating Disorder Relationships Jackie Shaw Movies for Teens Misconceptions of Smoking Marijuana Americans with Disabilities Act Legalization of Marijuana list Is therapy forever Substance Abuse Summer time parenting Quinton Ellis Gun violence and mental health Prevention Heroin in the Suburbs Grandparenting Child Abuse Brain Research World Health Organization School Consequences David Feldman Political bias Parenting through Divorce Mental Health Summer Freshman Year Tetra-Amelia Syndrome Prom guidelines for teens Medical Use of Marijuana in Oklahoma Sexual Abuse GirlStrong Drinking in high school The Martian Book Holidays College Age Children Managing substance abuse Teen Suicide Bullying Aggregated News for Teens Nutrition and stress Adult Children Communicating with your child Entitlement Syndrome Anger HB 2249 Parent peer pressure Alcohol gadgets Amanda Percival Seniors Will counseling work quickly Back to School parenting college age kids Bias and memory Confidentiality Dating Instagram How to talk to your kids about terrorism Affluenza personal growth Therapy Co-Parenting Death Procrastination The Golden Years 5 Love Languages Family Theory Teenage perception of drug use Character Development How to control panic attacks bucket list Terrorism and children Parenting with purpose Teen Safety Audrey Woods Time Management Emotions Michael Jackson Goal Setting Funding History Social Media Prom goals Gender Roles Teenage Development Disasters Drug Abuse Changing Problem Behavior Grounded Hope Micro-aggression Links between unemployment and depression College fads The Martian Movie Developmentally appropriate strategies for grief counseling Self-Esteem Speaker Listener Technique Children Communication Anxiety John Goetz How to manage anxiety Decision-Making Detox Diet Jay Asher Drugs What is domestic violence Chores for Teens Oklahoma Statute on Marijuana Andy Weir The Butterfly Circus Parenting Teens and Smartphones Lee Daniel Kravetz Panic Snapchat James Dobson Strong Willed Child Depression and social media


Call Us Now!