2-Year-Old Found Wandering in Woods Clutching His Mom's Suicide Note

Katie HalbertHere's a good reminder that the choices we make are not made in a vacuum -- they're bound to affect the ones around us. A young Alabama mom is in jail, and her 2-year-old is in the foster system after the toddler was found wandering in the woods. In his hands? His mother's suicide note!

Now obviously Katie Halbert is alive -- or she wouldn't be facing misdemeanor charges here. And thank goodness for it. Suicide is never the answer. But then, neither is allowing a toddler to wander around the woods just because you're having a tough time.

I don't want to sound unsympathetic about Halbert's plight here. Being suicidal is no laughing matter. I hope she gets the help she needs -- for her sake and for her son's.

But I'm getting a little tired of parents putting their kids in danger because of their own personal problems. Look at the dad charged this week with attempted murder after he allegedly threw his 2-year-old off a motel balcony. Cops said he'd called the boy's mom and asked her to come home because he was frustrated. When she couldn't, cops say he threw the kid over the balcony and then jumped. Again ... putting the child in danger because he was too wrapped up in his own issues.

In Halbert's case, she doesn't seem to have called anyone at all. It was when the child was found in the woods with mom's note that police were called to look for her. When they did find her, cops charged her with third-degree domestic violence/reckless endangerment.

The thing is, when you have a child -- whether it's your own or one you are simply caring for at the moment -- you don't get to put yourself first anymore. You took on the mantle of being the responsible adult. You OWE it to that child to be there for them, to keep them safe because they can't do it themselves.

If you can't keep a child safe, you shouldn't be in charge of them. Period. And if you don't hand the child over to someone who can keep them safe, well ... expect to land in jail.

Do you have any sympathy for this mom? What do you think should be done with her?

 

Image via Etowah County Sheriff's Office

 

If the words someone is using indicate they may be considering suicide, or if you yourself have wrestled with the idea, please reach out to a suicide hotline. There is ALWAYS someone there who wants to listen and who will take you seriously. You can call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

child abuse, crime

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NoWei NoWei

She needs mental health treatment, not prison.

LoveM... LoveMeChain

It's hard for me to feel bad for her. Before your mental health/drug abuse/etc starts spiraling out of control, it is your responsibility as a parent to try and do something about it because it will affect your child. When she started having suicidial thoughts, it was time to reach out, but she didn't. I do hope she gets help now, though.


It reminds me of a horrible article on mydeathspace from a few years ago, a husband killed himself, leaving behind a wife and three kids. In despair, the mother killed herself three weeks later. Selfish, sad, and completely preventable.

Pam.N.42 Pam.N.42

People with real mental health issues often can have them completely under control one minute and than not at all seconds later. Its horrible to judge someone who is struggling with thoughts of suicide. Is it selfish? Sure because the pain and depression are to much, but just because shes a parent that doesn't mean she has a magic fix for a chronic mental issue. Also there is very little support of mental health in America, especially for things like depression, she may very well have had no one helping her and no one to go to when she needed it. Obviously she made some poor choices in not getting her child somewhere safe, but she clearly needed help so it isn't surprising. 

LostS... LostSoul88

wow.... this is how our country treats the mentally ill?! When I was 18 and living on my own, a man was murderd by police in my appt complex because he was sucidal. He had a knife and the one that pulled the trigger claimed he jumped forward with the knife and he shot to save his own life but the other officers said NOOOOO he dropped the knife and that's when the trigger was pulled. 


Of coarse it was he's word against a few other officers and he lost his job but wasn't charged with murder. 

nonmember avatar britni

No sympathy.im so tired of mothers like this.her child could have been seriously hurt or killed walking around alone like that.i dont care what her "problems" are ,she endangered an innocent child.no excuses.lock her up.seems she just wanted attention.she needs to grow up, get over her "problems" and take care of her child or give him/her to someone who will.

Sherry Lefferts

I think she needs help, she needs not sympathy but prayers, I cannot judge someone until I walk in their shoes, but I think that when you have kids you have to think of them first!!! This is coming from someone that has and has always had a wonderful support system!!! Maybe she only had herself, and that sucks!!!

Merry Pingel-Gerrits

One thing most here, including the author, are not taking into consideration is that while there are a good number of "preventable" case situations, there are also just as many that are not.  Many people who have been suicidal at one point in time or another also at the time had a sudden shift in hormonal chemicals that affected their brains and thereby their thought processes....this actually comes on fairly suddenly, without warning, and in nearly all cases IS NOT preventable.....unless everyone in this world were to submit to a blood test EVERYDAY....you know, just in case.  We DO NOT know what the exact situation is in this case, therefore, I strongly feel we do NOT belong passing judgment here or anywhere else for that matter unless we are THE judge, THE jury, GOD, or on the JURY for this case.

Merry Pingel-Gerrits

I also really think that if people in general were to have compassion for persons who DO reach out with these thoughts that are actually in a preventable situation....which these days, many people do not have that compassion...they are often told to get over it or to quit being so selfish, then maybe, just MAYBE, more people in preventable case situations could get the intervention help they are needing because they feel safe asking for it.  (And many of the cases I have personally been involved with are not people who are thinking these thoughts because they want to cause pain and harm to others, they are thinking that if they permanently remove themselves from the other peoples' lives that it will make these other peoples' lives better in the long run OR they are in a constant state of physical and emotional pain that they can no longer tolerate even on medications and they feel that suicide is the only way left to them to end that pain from continuing, they often have a very poor quality of life, OR they fall into the hormone imbalance, just saying.)

Kristen Johnson

been there, done that, going thru it actaully. Do I feel sympathy? No, when I had my kids I wrote them notes to tell them I loved them, and made sure they were taken care of. but some people it is very sporadic and you don't know how to deal with it. I have been dealing with these issues for 8 years now. I love my kids and I am glad I am not in that particular place at this present time. But just like anyone with Cancer, it is an ongoing battle. That is what people who don't understand/suffer from these types of issues understand.

Jessica Dawn Mendoza

I love how this article doesn't even bother to mention mental illness at all, but instead sums it all up to being too caught up in ones own problems. This is what is wrong with our country. We treat mental illness like it just doesn't even exist.

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