Munchausen’s By Proxy Syndrome

Munchausen’s Syndrome is a compulsive tendency to invent elaborate health problems for oneself. It is named after the German storybook character and his impossible adventures. “Munchausen’s-by-proxy” is the compulsive need of some mothers to attribute improbable health-issues to their children.

Rod recalls Dee Dee — to whom he was briefly married, though they separated before Gypsy was born — told him their baby was suffering from sleep apnea at 3 months old. Her reported medical issues snowballed from there: muscular dystrophy requiring the use of a wheelchair; seizure medication that made her teeth fall out, requiring doctors to implant a feeding tube; leukemia. Gypsy was home-schooled after second grade on claims of her limited mental capacity.

All would turn out to be unfounded.

The girl, who was not in any way disabled, ended up murdering her mother in 2015.

I suspect that the same thing happens on a smaller scale with hyperactivity and autism, that more children are diagnosed and told they have a disability than really should be. There is nothing wrong with taking Ritalin or an anti-depressant, but how much of it is driven by a mother who can’t accept her kids as they are, a little too hyper or a little too morose? And what about what transgender children whom we are told are in desperate need of puberty blockers and surgeries?

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10 comments

  1. Puberty blockers only delay the process. Going off them sets the process on again.

    1. Hysterical mom teaching child that puberty is bad, what could possibly go wrong?

      1. I presume consent and doctors are part of the process.

      2. Both of which can be manipulated, as per the referenced story. You would say the risk of that is taken for granted and does not outweigh the goods. I disagree of course, but the point is that, like autism or ADHD being over diagnosed, we can safely assume the same is happening with “transgendered” children with their Munchausen mothers.

      3. The issue is the universality of standards (which is part of the functioning of law.)

        If your formula is X should be prohibited because it is or can be manipulated or misused by a minority- that has huge implications. The same formula could then be applied to prohibit guns or any other activity where there are abuses by a minority of people.

      4. No, my opposition is based on the immorality and irrationality of the act, which is abusive in and of itself.
        But if you must have your hysterical mothers getting puberty blockers, hormones and surgeries for their tomboys or effeminate sons, I’m 1) just pointing out the inevitable abuses you will have to deal with and 2) expressing my suspicion that once the fad passes there will be lots of angry 20-somethings hating mom for this.

      5. When you present an argument you lay out a mathematical equation.
        Are you trying to say your equation is only valid in single instance and the logic in and of itself isn’t valid in other instances?

      6. No, see above.

      7. I did see above. How do you frame your standards as to prohibit the situation you’re criticising without that affecting the rights of other people in analogous positions?
        The only way is some version of Jim Crow laws where rules apply to people based on their identity.

      8. I am pointing out a bizarre behavior that I suspect is partly to blame for overmedicated children and adolescent transgenderism.
        You want to turn it into a legal question.

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