Breaking Down the Walls of Silence

Children of Darkness

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Published by Dennis in Psychiatric abuse


Children of Darkness is an Oscar nominated 1983 documentary film produced and written by Richard Kotuk and Ara Chekmayan. It explored the topic of juvenile psychiatry - an acute lack of mental health care in America for seriously emotionally disturbed youth. Many children in these institutions were simply warehoused and the common basic form of therapy was drugs, which didn't really help the kids but merely controlled them. The film not only uncovered the mistreatments in mental institutions but it also captured the cold realization that mental illness can happen to anyone. Public mental institutions were not just for the poor. Children from middle class families and upper middle class families often ended up there due to inadequate insurance money and dwindled savings.

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  • Curiouser and curiouser Added I wonder if the teenager who escaped the hospital to never was ever found again? I believe her name is debbie? The suicidal one. So sad, I've tried researching any news stories on her and nothing, not even a news story in that town around 84-85 (in regards to a runaway).