Wednesday, March 13, 2019

God Knows Where I Am

I don't get into Netflix as much as I once thought I would. I am not much of a movie person. But I do like series and I love documentaries. Recently, through a friend who does You Tube, I picked up some Netflix shows I want to watch. She was so enthusiastic about one that I went and immediately watched it. WOW! I am glad I did. But, I warn you, it is somewhat sad.


GOD KNOWS WHERE I AM

This is the real life story of Linda Bishop. Linda was a mother, a sister, a friend. But she died alone in an abandoned farm house in one of the coldest winters New Hampshire had seen in years. Along with her body, discovered in the spring of 2008, they also found a journal. This journal documented her journey through starvation and insanity. The story is told through the eyes of her sister, her daughter, her friends, a police officer and medical professionals. 

Linda had been in an institution for 2 years but she was able to convince a judge she did not need a guardian and that she could make decisions for herself. She did not want her family notified about anything. She was paranoid and did not trust them. 

Linda was estranged from her daughter for a variety of reasons, but her sister did her best to help her. When Linda refused all medication she was released from the mental institution and because of HIPPA no one was notified. HIPPA laws were instituted in 1996 and ensures that medical records are kept private from anyone the patient does not want to see them. Linda had schizophrenia or a bi-polar disorder. Maybe both. 

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, there are an estimated 9.8 million Americans over the age of 18 with serious mental illness that impairs or interferes with one's life activities.

Upon Linda's release she made her way to this abandoned farm house and this is where she spent the remainder of her life. About four months. With only apples to eat.And water to drink. The water came from a creek behind the house. Or collected rainwater. Or melted snow. For four months. She rarely ventured out. Although there were neighbors right across the street. She could sit in the attic of the abandoned house and watch their big screen TV. She was sure her husband would find her. However, she was not married. He was a made up husband. Just existed in her mind.Linda died of starvation according to the autopsy. But she did know that GOD KNEW WHERE SHE WAS.

A  quote by Todd Wider, the producer of God Knows where I Am: "Some say Linda Bishop had a right to go there and die. But you can't exercise free will when the mind is not free."

If you haven't seen this documentary please watch. It is very profound.


34 comments:

  1. It sounds rather chilling. I must add it to my viewing.

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  2. These types of sad stories fascinate me so I'll be watching it. Good review. It is really sad to read the statistics of how many mentally ill are out there and so many of them homeless.

    betty

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    1. I was fascinated as well. So sad to know that help was just across the street.

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  3. So sad!I thought about watching this and then got sidetracked. I will be watching it soon.

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  4. Depending on my state of mind, I can watch and be okay, or I can watch and it will disturb me profoundly. Sometimes for months. I am bi-polar, but I take my medication seriously. My children seem to have inherited this from me. They do not take the medication seriously and I have spent hours on the phone with all three of them at times when they are suicidal. I doubt I could cope if I wasn't on daily medication. All three are on meds right now and since they are all in their 40's, they take this illness more seriously. I am pretty certain that my mother was bi-polar, but never treated for it. She led a miserable life and all those close to her were subject to her love/hate relationship. When she died we were estranged. I have since dealt with my feelings of guilt and now I just remember her with sadness.

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    1. I cannot imagine how it is to suffer with a mental illness. I am glad that you are on medication and that your children have been taught the importance of the medication. I hope the day will come when the stigma of mental illness no longer exists in America. My mom was a hard one to get along with as well. I am thankful we were not estranged at her death but she and my sister were. Sad!

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  5. I don't think I could sit through this. The idea of someone starving to death... It just gives me the willies. But I'm sure there are many who would get something profound from it.

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    1. The focus was really not on her starvation. For the most part the story from her point of view is upbeat until the end. But I do understand about not being able to watch. Not all movies are for all people!

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  6. What a sad story, but would be an eye opener to what happens to so many who go their own way when they really need help. They say there are many homeless on the street that are not in their right minds with bipolar and other disabilities. Heart breaking for sure.

    Hugs,
    'ma'

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  7. This prompts so many questions! I want to see it … and discuss with my DIL. Lois has worked with the mentally ill for 27+ years now; she laments our country's lack of funding and elected officials just putting a 'band-aid' over the problems.

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    1. In this case it was not a lack of funding as much as it was the HIPPA law. I think she could have been saved if they would have allowed her sister to be her guardian.

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  8. Sounds really interesting, and sad...

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  9. I remember her from when it happened. I remember she ate apples from old gnarly trees, then winter came and she died. So sad, I'm sure it was a good documentary.

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    1. Yes it was. And they were certainly gnarly old apple trees.

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  10. I reiterate, to everyone who knows old people (and that is most of us), more old people die of loneliness than any other cause.
    If you know an old person, know that, too.

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    1. Amen to that Joanne. The loneliness to a person who is older can be deadly. When I worked in the nursing home I was so surprised at the number of people who never had a single visitor.

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  11. Adding to my list now!! A crazy one to watch is Abducted in plain sight. You'll say what the heck out loud and shake your head.

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    1. I put that on my list. It was recommended by the same You Tuber. She said I would say "WTF" pretty often!

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  12. Yes, it sure was a sad story, but well done and enlightening. I was riveted to this show.

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  13. Definitely adding to my watch list.

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  14. It doesn't sound like my cup of tea, but it's good to see you back in the blogosphere!

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  15. Thank you for sharing this interesting post. I had not heard of Linda Bishop before. It reminds me of how fragile we can be - for whatever the reasone of cause. I would be interested in reading her journal. So glad to see you posting again! And... from here I am going back to your recent post on what you've been reading and leave a comment about an author I am reading through - in case you are interested. ;-)

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    1. THey showed bits of her journal on the show. I will go check out what you have to say about reading. Good seeing you my friend!

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  16. So much mental illness in this world. I think I will take a look at this documentary.

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