• 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


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


Call Us Now!