LOST CONTACT WITH REALITY?
CLINICAL psychologist Dr Kgamadi Kometsi said maladaptive psychological behaviour is caused by a variety of things so no one single thing would have caused what happened.
“In most cases for something as hectic as that to happen, one would’ve needed to lose contact with reality because doing something like that while in full contact with reality would be completely overwhelming for a normal person.
“She might have lost contact with reality because of whatever challenges she might have had in her life because of mental illness perhaps as it’s not quite clear what has happened,” said Kometsi.
He pointed out that losing contact with reality is some form of psychosis and it would be difficult to diagnose her without having sat down with her. Kometsi said these kinds of cases are common in psychiatric institutions. “I’ve done work in the correctional services for a number of years where people committed such crimes.
The ending of a person’s life is one of the most difficult things to deal with when you are having to assist the perpetrator to rehabilitate and become a different person. In committing this kind of act, in most cases, there needs to be some kind of psychosis unless we are talking about someone who is a complete psychopath.”
He is cautioning against jumping to conclusions. “It’s not my sense that this particular mother could have been a psychopath. She might have been facing a mountain of challenges and difficulties that might have landed her where she ended up,” he said, calling for society not to be quick to pass judgment.
“We need to gain an understanding of what is happening in our society that is resulting in these kinds of acts. A multi-disciplinary approach is needed where churches, community leaders and healthcare professionals join hands to provide the assistance that is needed.”