Munchausen By Proxy – Interview with Victim Author Julie Gregory

as we got closer to pinning down my mysterious illness in the cardiology department mom moved into micro managed healthcare with a logistical vigor of a drill sergeant look damn it this kid is sick or right just look at her and so help me God if she dies on me because you can't find anything wrong with her I'll sue you for every since you got making your own child sick to fulfill a disturbing need for attention might seem unimaginable to you but for a child suffering at the hand of their mother it's horrific Munchausen by proxy also known as medical child abuse is a controversial term that's used to describe a behavioral pattern that a caregiver deliberately exaggerated makes up and/or induces physical psychological or behavioral problems and those whom they care for on this episode of ask dr. Nandi we're talking about Munchausen by proxy we have with us Julie Gregory author of sickened and she's here to share her incredible and unthinkable memoir of growing up with a mother who suffered from Munchausen by proxy please welcome Julie I appreciate it so no um meeting your book yet what does one of your first memories of what's what happened with your mom um one of my first memories I my early years in Arizona and I'm sitting on my mom's lap she said honey do you want the suckers I said sure she reached in her purse and got out the suckers for me I took one of the suckers and put it on my tongue and it was red the sulfur taste and the real metallic zoltes you know happened on my tongue as it always did when I had the suckers and she would say do you want to finish the whole pack and I crunched it up and went for another sucker and what my mom had pulled out was a pack of matches the red sulfur tip matches I was about three or four at that time and then we moved to Ohio and my mom began researching in books just things that you would get like the pill book or medical digests and then saying I had symptoms getting medications and by the time I was 12 she was pursuing open-heart surgery for me so imagine your first memories with your mom is is that she was giving you a box of matches as suckers I mean this is how terrible and it's difficult for people to even understand or empathize because what happens is that how do you how can someone's mind be twisted in such a way that it becomes irresistible that you have to do this to your kids and this is what we want to talk about today is is explore that so we can have others who are suffering from this get the help they need also people who are doing this also get get some understanding and help that they need we have to take a break we come back Julie opens up Artur childhood the medication the tests and the surgeries all made-up illnesses I'm thinking be walking Julie Gregory author sickened her memoir of growing up with a mom with Munchausen by proxy now Julie we were talking a little bit about your childhood tell us what your childhood was like you know tell me what was going on throughout many years and then you started with the Arizona then you moved Ohio um I grew up really isolated so I grew up isolated and a dead end or row in a double-wide trailer my father was schizophrenic and my mom engaged in this child abuse I didn't know it at the time because um just like yourself if I gave you a medication for a heart problem that you didn't have how long would you take that medication before you started to feel physically ill right and then if I looked in the pill book and read about a medication that caused a toxic reaction with the medication you're already taking and I got a doctor to give me that medication to combine them you're going to feel really ill so as a child you don't know that you're being made ill I started out with little things like headaches and fevers that you know we're never quite documented I mean you can't really prove a migraine headache it was but then my mom would begin making things up taking me to doctors and speaking to them separately from me and then they were come in and do some kind of invasive procedure um the first time they did that I was ten and it was really terrible so it was very traumatic well um my mom woke up or I woke up and what often would happen with these doctor visits is that my mom would say you're sick you're not going to school today and then she would get in the phone book and call around and try to find a doctor that could see me if I would go to the doctor and they wouldn't do tests or they wouldn't you know take it further or she didn't get a good feedback or a warm response she would interpret that as me not showing I was sick enough and I would be really physically abused you know my head might be smashed into the windshield because I didn't act sick enough for her at the doctor to show them how sick I was so growing up being conditioned this way when my mom says we're going to go to the doctor you're sick you just trip into the automatic you know and you you already feel sick you're taking these medications so when I was ten she I was sitting in the examination room I didn't know why we were at the doctor you don't ask questions when you're in a family dynamic like that that's just it's just normalized and the doctor the nurses came in and I was in the gown and they shot me full of dye iodine dye and they inserted a tube in my urethra my mom had told them that I wasn't able to use the restroom and she had talked to the doctor separately from me on the hallway because she didn't want me to counter what she was telling them you attend I was 10 it felt um like I was being sexually violated it was an absolutely traumatic horrendous experience they had two people holding me down while they did this I was screaming I cut erupted in hives and on the way home my mom was on singing in the car she was really light and airy and happy and I remember um looking out at the fields because we lived very I fed into the country and I pressed my forehead to the glass the Sun was coming in warming my forehead and from a child's perspective I just felt that the warmth of that Sun was the only kind of light or hope that I had in my life I just felt really you know just dropped as any child would and then by the time I was very isolated yeah and then I was when I after that I was just starved and then my heart rate would be different when I stood up from when I sat down at a pediatricians office and that my mom capitalized on as having a heart condition which got her into getting home she starved you so that you were dehydrated then she took so anybody who knows this about anyone medicines that when you're dehydrated and you go from a lying to a standing position your heart rates gonna go up that's right yeah and then so what did she do based on that well I had no food in the mornings I had no lunch and I wasn't given any kind of lunch money and I she wouldn't sign the paperwork for free lunch so I went to a country school and I just didn't notice those things you know and then I did a lot of heavy work when I came home because we had a farm so um you know standing up and sitting down and standing up at the pediatricians office they noticed my heart wasn't in a normal rate and they sent me to the local hospital to just get an EKG and that my mom pounced on as wanting to get open-heart surgery done on me so over the next you know between age 11 and age 13 I did a lot of halter monitors EKGs and whenever the doctor would say this halter monitor is okay there's nothing wrong here she would just cut bait and run to another doctor and start up or all again she finally found a cardiologist willing to put me in a hospital to do an exploratory procedures yeah a heart catheterization I was in the hospital for a week and the beautiful thing about it was that my mom wasn't around she was in the hospital but she was visiting patients and she was hanging out with the nurses at the station and she was in the library this is her this is a kind of a recreational time for wasn't it I got a lot of food while I was there I ate three meals a day so here's a child that's in a hospital that doesn't want to leave and so I didn't want to go home I didn't want to leave and I was just happy to be there let me ask you this so you know what about what about your dad you know how was he involved in any of this you know anytime you have a parent that's doing this kind of perpetration you have to obviously have to have another parent who's equally checked out and you know my dad with his own mental illness he's not aware of things going on um but just back to the hospital you know the night before I had been with five days of full meals and extras and a whole week without my mom when they came in that night to prepare me for the surgery the next day I had no idea what they were doing and when she said they had to shave my body I mean that's just when you're 13 that's just so invasive you know it's very traumatic I left to the back of the bed I grabbed the covers and I just blurted out you don't have to do this my mom is making it up and I didn't believe that it just came out I didn't conceptually understand what that meant um but you were so frightened because of the fact that things were happening I mean imagine this I mean this is a child that even anybody who has children or just have you just horrified what she's talking about is that there all this is happening and you don't even know why we have take a break when we come back we'll share more with with you and then find out you know what happened finally how did you come out and and break on it about being in a hospital and then being terrified and then blurting out that she's she's making it up time what happened so I'm back in the corner of the bed I'm terrified having my body shaved for this surgery they're going to cut me open the next day with my arm and my thigh and run an electrical wire in my vein and artery into my heart while I'm awake so for being 13 it's really terrifying and blurting out you know my mom's making it up wasn't something I had ever considered before it just happened you never really considered that she was making all this up no because I was physically sick as I pointed out earlier you know if you're getting medications for things you don't need and I was getting tenormin which is a heart medication for heart condition I don't have that that's going to make you feel physically ill and it was being combined with lots of other medications that she would get from different doctors none of which knew none of who knew who you know who else was treating and she was the only point of reference so you just know exactly she's not going to forward those records exactly so um the nurse said hold on I'm going to check something out and I just had all of these floods of thoughts my cardiologist will adopt me I'll run away it's going to be okay you know they're gonna keep me safe they're gonna find out you know what's really going on I can't believe I said that about my mom I love my mom I know I'm sick I feel sick there's a lot of different complications things going on there the nurse came back in she had that solid clip to her walk that said she meant business she sedated me and shaved me and the next morning they wheeled me into surgery and even helped do something yeah they didn't nobody nobody did anything yeah um and just I remember uh you know my mom was there in like her best pastels and she had a wig on and she just you know looked in her opinion to be you know ready she was an Oldman yes she's in her element exactly my dad was there and you know the white plastic loafers that he squeezed into you know standing a few feet behind her and I remember reaching out for my father in this drug haze you know I just wanted to touch my father's face and he said bye sissy and they wheeled me in and the first incision they made was in my arm it just looked like a chicken breast being filleted open there was no blood and you know because their medical staff they're trying to make light and make jokes you know to keep me in good spirits you're saying look isn't that cool you're seeing your heartbeat on television it's like a soap opera or something you know but then um the the doctor came in the surgeon came in he had a whole row of scalpels and he took my leg and he kind of kinked it up so that it was like a big crab leg and I was watching him and he took the scalpel and he cut my inner thigh and the blood just raced out across this white sheet and at the sight of my blood I sort of fighting I started hitting people and fighting and you know there was probably three or four attending people around me they couldn't I was pulling the thing out of my arm I was getting off the table and they said you know get her down so they shoved the tube up my nose and they they put me out so um when the test results came back from this heart catheterization we were standing in a major hospital and with my child cardiologist and my mom was on a first-name basis with them she was so comfortable you know and you know he said these test results is great news these test results were normal or your daughter doesn't need open-heart surgery and she said John you promised me that you were going to get to the bottom of this we were in this together long I want that open-heart surgery for her he took a step back from her and he got really Stern you know and he just said drop it this isn't happening and I just remember um my – dreams that my cardiologist was going to adopt me you know what I mean and just the depression of of that those you only hope that was my only hope at that time one way of getting up yeah and then later that day my mom was in the phone book um calling up new cardiologists and she was saying you know my child has mitral valve prolapse and needs medication and evaluated and everything and she just went on to a new cardiologist and got me on more medication well this is I mean just told you the type of pathology we're talking about you know she feels and so if you have to recognize these signs that she's talking about the moms at her inner element in her Sunday best walking up and down when your child's suffering most normal parents are distressed to the nth degree they're wondering what's going to happen is my child going to be okay and they're they're not in their Sunday best or not gleeful and and those are signs that all the hospitals missed all the doctors missed because I know I mean when I deal with even adolescents not even young children like like like you were at that time the amount of worry that that you know these parents have but but but but this is a pathological condition these folks are such good actors they're such they're this is what they do and live for they fool almost everybody and so what happens is when you get fooled how did you finally escape what happened um you know it wasn't just me that this was done to my mom when I was in the ten or eleven age range she started to do this to my brother and my dad in our family girls were not important boys were my dad got involved he wasn't able to save me but he was going to save my brother and so what my mom did is she gained a license for foster children and she also gained a license for old war veterans she only took the diabetic war veterans the ones that would be given insulin and she over insulated them so that they would be kind of in stupor okay so she kept them in a locked room awesome woman with in our trailer that she had built an interior room that was about 10 by 8 they sat in lazy boy recliner with trash bags in the seats and they would soil themselves and she would let them out once a day to eat at a card table and she would take all the leftovers from the refrigerator and just mix them together like you would feed you know cattle yeah and just put the slot of the cold slop out and so my mom developed this a rotisserie of people that she could take to doctors over and over again and nobody picked up on this well there's no way to how would anybody have separate doctors and there's no forwarding of medical records it was going to possibly know she would go to other towns you can go anywhere you know you can drive 40 minutes in any direction and intersect with three or four different cities or towns you know and if a doctor wouldn't go very further she never went back to that person she was always seeking in those records when I was a professional this is what she had all the time well the underlying psychopathology of these perpetrators as they are psychopathic you know so my mom has an eighth-grade education but she's very cunning and she's very manipulative and knows how to do that and you know the thing that happened is after the heart surgeries she was able to go on and get other things done to me and how I got out of it was I finally found someone have you let me have you hold that thought it's like we come back we'll find out how she got out of it so walking back we left you know Julia was talking about how she she escaped from this horrific situation so tell us please what I was saying is that my mom didn't just have me but she also had a license for foster children and War veterans and you know when I was 16 I finally did find someone to believe me about some of the abuses that were happening to the foster children I didn't know it was Munchausen by proxy there was lots of other violence as well but when they went to talk to the children that's when they discovered the war veterans in this locked in her room and so everybody got taken away and the licenses were revoked and because it was such a dangerous situation and I had been the one to facilitate that I had to go into protective custody because my my family made death threats my mom especially read it yeah to me against me so I was 16 I went into protective custody child custody and you know as a lot of abuse kids I was too scared to testify against my parents in court you have to face them you have to you know and there's always a chance you could be sent back home so um I didn't choose to testify against them and I was sent back home and then the world yeah I was sent back home when I was 17 yeah and um right after that my parents they burned the house down so they burned that our house burned down and they got an insurance settlement they went back later to do an investigation on how that house fire happened but at the time you know it's a rural community and there's probably not a lot of authority with certain things like that and it's a double-wide trailer so you know there's just not much investigative kind of stuff and when the house burned down my brother and I we lived I have a younger brother he's seven years younger and we lived in a small pool behind camper without even a bathroom I was a senior in high school and he would have been seven years younger and we got on the school bus we didn't tell anybody that our parents weren't there we didn't want to go into foster care or be separated or just left you yeah my mom went to Mexico and my dad moved away and moved into a garage and got a big flag that said kill them all that God sorted out you know Pio wmia flag and so I took care of my brother and we were very very tight you know I love my brother very much can I tell you something though you know we're talking about this is such a matter-of-fact way yeah you suffered unimaginably you suffered more than anybody I've heard talking like I said the fact that you're sitting here and as strong as you are talking to us is a testament and I think you're here because the odds are against this happening the odds are against you coming out of this situation as strong and as well as you are and that's that's an amazing amazing feat that's one of the things how angry were you when you 16 or 17 it's different when you're 10 when you knew this happened you're frightened but were you also angry because you kind understand what's going on I think that uh just going back into being drugged and having things done to me may be more subversive than angry and I think that you know the child's mind the psyche cannot really comprehend and handle in a full-on way the what's really happening the parent to whom you trust to whom you say I love you to whom you're bonded is actually using you as a shoehorn to get into the medical establishment and making you sick and causing you problems and keeping you out of school when I was 15 um you know my mom had kept me out of so much school for the medical stuff she was able to go to a new doctor a plastic surgeon and say that you know I wasn't getting enough oxygen to my brain and then I was MRDD and they did an operation on my nose and I ended up in a facial cast I mean you are just kept in a place of being kind of like a Pio w you know child and medical things were they are traumatic you don't heal from them overnight and you're just used as a guinea pig so I don't think I had time to be angry I was angry later yeah let me ask this is about a video that you want to show us that will really kind of demonstrate what's going on would you would you kind of go through that video with us absolutely it's a really good video for you so a lot of times people don't understand this is a woman who's put her child in a hospital saying the child vomits you can see she's shoving her fingers down the child's throat to try to make a child vomit this is a woman who has an infant here she's going to pull that infant's face over she lifts her breast and leans her entire weight over the infant's body she has submitted this child to the hospital for apnea or passing out and she is going to create this child to pass out there's a light monitor or the child struggling if you were to listen you would hear him gasping for breath and he is going to stop struggling soon his light monitor is going to go off and then surveillance hospital staff is going to come in now they're watching this the whole time she sees that he hasn't passed out yet so she does it again and what I want you to understand is that this is not a little bit of child abuse this child is life is in danger every second it's with this woman would you want this child to go back to this mother exactly so what hospitals do is see the light monitor it's it's going off now indicating to the staff the staff comes in turns on the light and the ethical point of contention of these videos is that they don't just have this happen once an hour later it's going to happen again they need to get this woman doing this repeatedly to be able to protect this child and that's because courts have commonly in the past they have put children back into the homes of these mothers and they end up dead so what happened in this is if this mother did go to jail and is barred forever from having this child or any other so you know we went through this this entire story what you talked about for those you're watching at home its she came here so that nobody else has to go through what she did and that is a lesson if you suspect anybody of having the same horrific experience that that she did or if your health care practitioner we need to be better prepared to really understand what's happening and that it may be a controversial diagnosis but I would say if there's if there's any suspicion of this at least it should be investigated and it's not easy it's not easy like you talked about to get in a court of law and actually prove this but I think the reason why we're doing this the reason why you've taken the time to go through this experience again and so that people understand are more aware as this doesn't happen again thank you very much for sharing it appreciate it it's my life's work thank you next what to do if you suspect someone you know is showing the signs of this child abuse welcome back we're not going after lawyers are costly thank you for joining us at we should having you know what you're talking about Munchausen by proxy what what exactly is it you know for in layman's terms for folks or for watching it a nurse to the audience what is it absolutely it is considered a medical child abuse so there is physical and emotional but this one is a very unique case where they utilize medications or even physical abuse or emotional abuse to perpetrate a lot of medical diagnoses through childhood and the children then are become sick and then through this the parents or the caregiver in those case will be able to seek attention and all that through their sick child almost to get rewarded for that you know the the term comes from mont johnson was a mercenary back and I think the 1800s was to make up these ridiculous stories about all the things he did then I think it's a British doctor who saw Munchausen's he saw patients who would you know make up these illnesses care and so he gave that name Munchausen's to them and then modulus is by proxies instead of yourself you just use a child and and make them look exactly exactly so when that happens and this child abuse happens how do we treat this well in two facets so typically if I have someone that's an adult that is the person that is causing this harm usually I don't see them in therapy unless they're forced to be there whether that may be through the system you know for abuse cases and then a lot of it is so many layers of deception and manipulation that in order to focus in on just the Munchausen by proxy part I mean you're looking at really in-depth therapy and they use a lot of let's pay attention over here and over there and not really on me so that is the same talk to them you mean they try to divert me absolutely absolutely because the problem is that they don't want to look into their own shadow so we have all of these things so a lot of the treatment options are the same as I would have with somebody that's psychopathic or sociopathic it's just you know in which derivative did they take that psycho psychopathology and utilize it in this case sadly it's towards children so there's that then I have the children that come to me more traditionally for the therapy and a lot of it has been and now you know in a Julia's case there was so many missed signs but now thank God we have a lot of teachers kind of piping up and saying you know they're missing a lot of school or you know there's a lot of different records that are a big cross-reference so I'm getting doctors referring people to me saying I really want you to talk to the child and I have the ability to see the child one-on-one in the office and get them to trust and love the environment so they can open up and say you know I really don't feel well but something's off here too and they can trust me enough to kind of rise to their own potential so that is a long term child therapy where you start off in a really loving caring environment and you get them to understand that the world is actually trustworthy because in that don't destroy it for them isn't it yeah absolutely well you know they they trust this parents and they don't even realize that what they're trusting is the thing that's destroying them so giving them a good reference point of healthy of being good enough the way you are is is more than anything the foundation to build on well the whole point of doing the show is that we want no child to have to have this happen and obviously if they do then we'd like to have folks like you come and help them but ideas let's just stop it from happening said said they don't have to worry about this thank you for taking the time yeah thank you missing me you're welcome Pacific will come back we'll have our favorite tuna fishing dr. zarifah to us and she'll talk more about the medical manifestations of Munchausen approxi welcome back we're not joined by 30 pediatrician that related to us walking again thank you thanks for having me back probably no we're talking about Munchausen's by proxy in and as a pediatrician how often I mean do you look like this often or do you see it often you know we don't see it often you know it's one of those things that you know common things occur commonly so your standard colds allergies these are what you see the most however in any medical specialty in the back of your mind you always have the severe illnesses this being one of them and going under the big term of even abuse in general that's always going to be in the back of your mind if you have unexplained illnesses situations where the story and what you're seeing in front of you don't make sense or things that you have treatment failure after treatment fail your return visits it's got to be in the back of your mind or an unexplained injury you know it's just one of those things in the back of your mind even though it is not as common that's called when you see those signs there you go and say when you see those signs what do you do as a physician it's it's not always easy because you're dealing with with with parents and children what what happens what do you do yeah you're right it's definitely not easy in general you know going into the world of pediatrics you're there for families you expect a loving family you would you just don't imagine that anyone is going to harm a child the same way you want to take care of a child as well as a doctor so in the medical field we're very into cause and effect there has to be a reason for everything I mean in the real world that doesn't happen but in general we really look for cause and effect so when you start getting stories when you start to see children come in again and again because it's a wide variety of presentation for Munchausen by proxy it's not always going to necessarily be the severe injury sometimes things start out mild it can be a case where the child comes in for the exact same symptoms that you never see in the office it can start as mild as someone insisting antibiotic after antibiotic for a sinus infection you never see you never see nasal drainage they're not as sick as they're being presented his home at home but things get more and more severe you know caregivers can actually induce illness yeah um you know patients can be worked up for big bleeding disorders when in fact the bruising is occurring because the parent is doing it at home to make it appear so this wide variety makes it hard to diagnose and as a result hard to treat because depending how severe times children have to be removed from the situation there are times family therapy can start with education and helping people get to the core and through it what when a when a doctor reports let's say they report a person what's what are the processes that they have to go through anyone in the medical field is a mandated reporter anyone who has contact with children is a mandated reporter so teachers clergy and again medical field is huge you're talking speech pathologist pathologist audiologist physical therapists so if you even have the suspicion that something about a story is not making sense or there's actually even a list that s mandated reporters will look at and guidelines there are certain injuries that have such a high likelihood of not being accidental such a high likelihood of abuse they are on that mandated list of reporting so certain types of fractures burns skin injuries presentations that you are by law mandated to report and these mandated you know reporters for example you know pediatricians being one of them if you see it in the office if you suspect it you don't have to confirm legally you don't have to do a huge investigation but you are obligated by law to file what we call a 3200 which is a document that you start filling out it's a very brief one about the history what happened when you saw the child in the office and then that launches the whole Child Protective Services investigation with caseworkers social workers special pediatricians with our child abuse specialists most hospitals have child abuse team that will investigate and again this is you know broad spectrum we're not specifically just talking Munchausen by proxy this goes for any abuse and so if you see that suspicion and this happens a lot in the ER certain fractures even if a halfway-decent story certain fractures are such that they definitely have to be reported and that relieves you a little bit from that burden because a lot of parents sometimes this is by no means abuse kids do fall you know we're talking about this carry stuff here but sometimes kids to fall um but it relieves a little bit of that you know like being the persecutor it is a biological system that's in place that's them that's great advice a quick break we come back the favorite part of my show is is the audience questions sometimes in questions into the audience yes ma'am hi our moms who abuse their children by Munchausen's by proxy victims of abuse themselves it's a good question you know people we have you know bullies often have been bullied themselves and what do you think about this not not you ask that first no our moms also victims themselves very much so typically you see that where they've been either emotionally physically or sexually abused as a child or adolescent and then they repeat the same cycle do what about what do you think oh well for me looking back definitely the things that happened to me such as the wreaths wrote us at age 10 and also being starved those same things happen to my mom she didn't have a medical test but she actually was sexually abused at age 10 and then I believe that the tests that she facilitated for me was sort of like re-enacting that the way a child would reenact that on a doll in therapy except I was a real-life person who had to go through that so I'm the same things that were done to her were done to me in a sort of a different format and she and you told me on stage I think that your mom was how old was she when she was actually about use um she was given a way to older men when she was younger um and then I also was giving away as well when I it was a teenager so um I think that you know the things that happen to her that she would cry to me about she would then you know need to reenact on me sort of as a unconscious some version sick and twisted version of therapy but without any conceptual understanding of what she was doing or how to really heal herself wait the way to for me is that what happens is these poor people they can abuse that's all they know and there's no release there's no way to like you talked about Laura is that they don't want to go into themselves to find out because because when you go in that place it's hurt that's it's not easy it's difficult and so rather than go there you know you transfer sure right you transfer that same behavior just to your daughter or child and then and then hopefully you get rid of that feeling because it's got I mean think about it this is this is it's very difficult because most of us not to face this but it's a cycle that continues on and if you didn't escape that the same thing may happen to you as well but you you become healthy and you're sharing this experience while the others don't it's a great question that's question yes do victims of my chosen by proxy grow up to live normal lives we talked about that Julie's a great example she's very strong and doing wonderfully well so what do you think I mean do people people Laura do people actually who have been victimized at this child abuse do they grow up to be normal normal kids and adults yeah I believe it's redefining normal right so normal is being content and happy within your life and sometimes intervention needs to happen when they're young other times I've had people come into therapy with me in their 80s in group homes and they've had the last ten years of their lives have been magnificent so it's absolutely in our potential to do that that's the beauty of our human potential human form Julie what do you think I just want to say something um you know this is my life's work um you know illuminating what I came from for the good of others but um I always and probably will always have a sadness of a loss of family I don't have the kind of family you know I don't know what it's like to have a mom want to take me to dinner or a dad who would be protective of me I've never known that and I'm still kind of looking to get adopted so so I just want to say you know for anyone that may come from a family of great adversity a family of origin is that it's such a hero's journey to hold accountable the people who harmed you and to separate from them I never advocate for people hanging out with your rapist you know for Thanksgiving dinner I just believe that it when someone's hurt you as a child the best course of action is to get away from them and stay away from them at all cost and that means forming your own family and finding you know adequate replacements for joy that you would normally get from your original family so that's kind of tricky for a lot of people it smallest and also you know one thing is that as we're closing is that you lose your childhood that you know there's a song by Michael Jackson it says have you seen my childhood and he talks about that and he talks about how he's trying to re-enact his childhood because I don't know if he was abused or not it is contentious but it's that loss of childhood you never gain because it's such an important part of your life let's take a break you know thank you very much for answering those questions I appreciate it please don't go away we'll come back by the specific welcome back today we've talked about Munchausen by proxy what can we take away from today's part those prescriptions first Munchausen by proxy is a rare form of child abuse that involves the exaggeration or fabrication of illness or symptoms by a primary caretaker now since the cause is a need for attention and sympathy from doctors or nurses or already have the health professional all medical practitioners have to be aware of the diagnosis also remember the perpetrator of medical child abuse is familiar with the medical profession and knowledgeable and how to induce illness and impairment of the child medical personnel often overlook the possibility of Munchausen by proxy because it goes against the belief that parents and caregivers would never deliberately hurt their child we have to be proactive to stop this abuse of our children now for more information on Munchausen by proxy or to revisit any of the information on our show today please visit our website at estate so namaste to each and every one of you thank you for watching see you next time you

49 thoughts on “Munchausen By Proxy – Interview with Victim Author Julie Gregory

  1. This is one of the many reasons why I prefer life as it was a long time ago: people lived together, several generations under the same roof, several families living together or just next to each other. There was no privacy, but people were much safer and honest

  2. I actually have a heart condition, and I know how terrifying all these procedures and tests can be to a child whose parent is genuinely trying to help. I can't imagine going through this knowing that your parent not only didn't care, but was actively harmful. This woman is so brave speaking out like this and working to help people like her.

  3. This would never happen here in my country as child safety is always checked by doctors and they do make sure they can talk to children alone, also no child would go with out lunch at school, if they are with out lunch often , it is reported.
    I am so sad for this woman’s childhood.

  4. Been falsely accused of Munchausen by proxy because my adopted son had a rare disorder which included bone marrow loss, bleeding, brain atrophy…and the list goes on. I completely understand looking at the red flags but it was absolute hell and my kids suffered alot of trauma having to go through major investigation. Thankfully, God protected us throughout it but this is a topic that needs to be handled VERY carefully. It can completely anihalate a family. Now even hearing the words Munchaussens triggers me back to those memories

  5. I’m curious…has anyone here have any experience with this? What’s your story?

  6. And don't do such horrific things to cows either. What happens in factory farms is an atrocity and each person Can stand up against it. We need to write letters to legislators to stop the abuse in factory farms done to animals. Another vital means to end torture and slaughter is by going vegan.

  7. They have to be very careful. My daughter was accused of making her baby sick. He was a new born and had violent vomiting. The Dr didn't want to see it because of a nurse who worked at the hospital in the labor and delivery who so happens to be daughters ex mother in law. There was one time at a Dr. appointment that my grandson started vomiting and quit breathing. The Dr. told my daughter she was at her wits end with her. After the Dr left the room, she told my daught there is something wrong with your baby and you need to get your baby to a different Dr. She drove my daughter and baby to hospitol so he could be admitted. A friend of daught told her she thinks he might have gerds. My daughter told Dr she wanted her baby checked for gerds , and he dud have it. Dr never apologized, needless to say he now has a different Dr

  8. And then you have the doctors who accuse you of this not saying it but you know because they don’t let you be in the room with your baby alone. My daughter had a failure to thrive due to being having a true full blown allergy to milk. They thought because she was hospitalized that was helping her gain weight when in fact it was the special formula that they gave her that helped her gain weight. I told them to release my baby I wanted to take her home. They sent me home with the prescription of formula and she grew and gained like a normal baby. She was a premature baby and had a rough start. Now she is a beautiful intelligent 13 ur old young lady. So glad I stood up for myself.

  9. Brave lady…helping inform others… hope you grow from strength to strength… pyschopaths are most dangerous people as their insidiousness is SO cleverly disguised…sad … world becoming aware but NOT fast enough….

  10. I read this book on the Libby app from the library, very sad, glad she is doing well

  11. I have read the book sickened and I really identify with Julie, as a child I suffered at the hands of my Munchausen by proxy mother, she even made me hit her and make me break her leg so she could get attention for herself as well. This condition changed my in ways I find hard to describe, I was infertile and managed to have a child with fertility treatment but often wondered if my infertility was a knock on effect from all the procedures I had as a child. My sister also suffered but I seemed to get the most of it as I was the youngest and more "sickly" of the two of us. My sister and I are very close now and we watch our still living mother like a hawk and try not to react to her. Could go on and on but won't lol, all in all we are reasonably well adjusted and leave pretty normal lives I would write a book myself but my parents are still alive and she would call me a liar so there is no point. One day perhaps I will have my freedom.

  12. Sorry I dont fall for the excuse "Because I was abused, now I have the right to abuse others". Just too easy to fall back on nowadays. Not an acceptable EXCUSE.

  13. That video of the baby was the worst thing ever.
    This woman is amazing. She is a hero.

  14. She was in between saying something very important & he spoke over her. He's not properly listening to her story! Good job she kept on.

  15. In NZ no doctor will take us on as a patient unless are records are forwarded from previous doctors…..they get a whole health history when we first sign up with them.

  16. I don’t think giving doctors more power is the solution. I think there are much easier ways. I’ve been treated horribly becuase my kids are not vaccinated. My sone was blue and almost died, turns out he had a kidney infection at 4 months old but the emergency doctor was yelling at me and threatening me that she needed to do a spinal tap immediately(so she could get a nice paycheck) and I refused becuase it was so obviously un needed. She turned me in and I was visited a few times in his hospital stay. Thank goodness his urine sample came in time but they were ready to lock me up even though I was being polite and professional about it even as my son was barely alive. Some doctors are nuts and on a power trip

  17. Doctors need to be much more onto this. In NZ doctors are conservative in prescribing drugs and do not give them out unnecessarily. I've had doctors who helped me look for alternatives to drugs for certain health conditions – dietary changes rather than expensive useless vitamins and minerals. Acupuncture for the pain of passing gallstones, colonic irrigation afterwards to remove the toxins from my system and a light natural diet. Even with stress disorders, they only prescribe Valium and drugs like that for 10 days, after that we have to go into counseling and join support groups. Surgery and invasive interventions are last resort and only used when all else fails, so it would be hard to get a child these unnecessary treatments in NZ.

  18. This is why HIPAA was created. It allows for the transfer of medical records w/o getting a patient's signature every time – its significantly decreased the way people can con the system and has created more continuity within the medical field.

  19. That sounds like what Shanann Watts had. The mom smothered the 2 babies then the psycho dad strangled the mom.

  20. this woman's parents have been investigated by the state and have never ever found any neglect, abuse, or have they ever found evidence of what she is alleging. I had to go do some research because she is the one that needs attention. Something about her is off. Nothing that she claims has ever been proven and I am convinced she is out just for attention and to make money on her book….I mean even the way she talks is so dramatic and out of a horror movie. Nothing about her seems real and more like a facade. People should really do some research before you take people serious right away….She seems really Mental.

  21. Who is dr. Nandi and where can i see his shows ? Ive never heard of this guy

  22. Kudos to the interviewer! Straightforward questions and kind to her as well. Don't see that on Dr.Phil

  23. So glad we have records available online to doctors today. Every record from about 2010 is available to any medical facility with just your name, date of birth and Social Security number.

  24. Why does this woman keep adding stuff into her story. Veterans? I don’t buy it! Just brought up being given to other men? Wouldn’t that be part of her story and not just the answer to a question? Maybe she’s suffering from actual munchausens.

  25. Mothers that do this to their children deserve to be murdered , just like gypsy rose orchestrated for her mother . I feel no sympathy for these sick fucks.

  26. Okay let's not have any confusion here, forced cath and having your pubic hair noncon shaved ARE sexual assault. They are not LIKE sexual assault.

  27. The fucked up part is that stress and trauma puts one at risk for legitimate autoimmune conditions. My partner has a muncher mom and he grew up to legitimately develop diagnosed and blood-tested lupus.

  28. At 14 minutes in, I need to take a walk. I'm having anxiety and my heart is racing after listening to that horrific story.

  29. She's incredibly well spoken and intelligent. It's amazing considering how much trauma she went through as a child

  30. this lady is embellishing a lot about the testing on her… people are never shaved head to toe for cardiac caths… they don't "fillet" the arm to place a catheter… you are also not put to sleep for this procedure…its interesting that she is putting on such a sad story of abuse to get people to feel sorry for her… she is so needy herself… obviously has some severe mental illness…and of course she wrote a book… how convinent… she does not look the host in the eyes…too many holes in her story…

  31. Why the hell would a court allow a child to go back to an adult thats on video suffocating them even one time. Seriously, our system is clearly unequipped to deal with victims of abuse.

  32. OMG I wish they'd had a trigger warning on that hospital video.

  33. The medical staff in these cases need to be prosecuted, its disgusting! They helped her mother abuse her.

  34. I don't actually think it was the mother who suffered from Munchausens I think whoever they are caring for are the real sufferers, don't you think? I don't think these people suffer much at all, it's the kids or elderly people or whoever else gets stuck with these monsters…sorry I have little sympathy for anyone who seeks attention by harming others!
    I think most parents would put up with awkward questions or having to be watched it in the end it shows up people who are doing this kind of thing. I wouldn't mind if I thought that it saved some poor kid from being treated this way. Like the lady said, they're at risk of dying every minute they're with the person. I wouldn't object, or be angry about being filmed in hospital at night if it helps to catch someone like the monster on the film!

  35. Is it mostly mothers who do this or do fathers do it too?

  36. I know of this condition, I really believed her until she got to the old veterans part . I don't think I believe all her story.

  37. This makes me ill. I dread and fear possible illness in my child. So much so that I’d argue I have hypochondria by proxy. These people who hurt kids or pretend kids are hurt? I can’t even begin to imagine. My kid gets a cold and I go insane.

    These parents need to turn themselves in

  38. Good news now is medical records are digital and I believe easier for drs all across the country to access. So hopefully this is now easier to catch these child abusers sooner and save the victims.

  39. I CALL BULLSHIT….Look I am so so sorry if I’m wrong but some of this doesn’t add up?! I believe her mom did terrible things to her but I think she’s embellishing some of the details…I do not believe a 40/50 something year old lady can remember word for word a conversation she had when she was 3? Like what her mom said, what she said and I have an even harder time believing that a 3 year old would willingly eat matches even if her mom called them suckers. she also said she crunched them after sucking them… what did she crunch? Wouldn’t the red part be wet and under the red part is wood so did she crunch the wood?? Also she said her mom slammed her head into the windshield? Think that through… specially in old cars where dashboards were huge. how would you even do that? You would have to have her stand or kneel on the seat and get her head close and then her mom would have taken her and awkwardly pushed her up into the dashboard and then awkwardly slam her face into the slanted glass? Unless they had a Jeep Wrangler where the windshield is closer and straight up and down and not slanted like most cars…Why not just bash her into the window right next to her? I’m sorry that I’m such a cynic, like I said; I believe her mom did abuse her, I’m just saying it sounds like she embellishing the details, I’m sure growing up the way she did that she too likes being a sympathetic victim and prolly still seeks that attention to this day!

  40. Also what is “zoltes” she says it at 1:43 and I can’t find it defined anywhere, it doesn’t come back as being a word, I can’t even figure out what she means if she’s using the wrong word… the closest I can come up with is “jolts” ???

  41. hi there! I saw your channel name and just wanted say my aunt who is a army veteran, name is Trieste. I also clicked because this mental illness has always interested me.

  42. Was in no where near as abusive as a situation but I was taken out of my parents custody because of their dysfunction. It took me almost dying of dehydration, starving, and almost getting shot for the courts to take me from my parents custody.

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