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How Do You Deal With An Abusive Child?

So, I read a post over on GOMI about a blogger with an autistic daughter who tried to kill said daughter and herself on Tuesday. They generally don't like linkbacks so I'll just copy+paste the short post here:

Kelli Stapleton, mother to an autistic daughter, was hospitalized Wednesday after attempting to kill herself and her child, Issy, late Tuesday. The mother and daughter were found unconscious on the shore of Lake Michigan with two portable charcoal grills burning inside the van. They were transported to the hospital and are being treated for carbon monoxide poisoning – and while Kelli is expected to recover, doctors fear 14 year old Issy may have permanent brain damage.

Earlier interviews with Kelli hinted that she might be reaching her limits:

“I felt like I needed witnesses…If I didn’t survive this situation, I wanted people to know that I was a good mom and I did everything I could do, and I asked for help from all these resources. … I’m grateful people read it and wanted to help.”

Kelli is expected to be arraigned sometime in the next week.

And it got me thinking; how DO you deal with an abusive child? And obviously, no, murder is not the answer, but how do deal with an abuser that genuinely can't help themselves?


I hadn't heard of these people before I read it here, but Issy has apparently put her mom in the hospital several times. In any other situation, you'd tell someone being abused to get out, but you can't abandon a child. YOUR CHILD. How do you deal with that? I dunno. It seems like a weirdly unique abuse situation that doesn't get talked about much. And again, I'm not saying it's fine to try to kill your child (because duh...) but what is the right way to deal when you genuinely have reached the end of your rope with a child you love who is an actual physical threat to you? And I don't necessarily just mean autism. With any child who might have severe tantrums, or might be big enough to hurt a parent.

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