Friday, February 27, 2009

Death in the Family, Part 5

The final installment of the Dead in the Family transcripts, which features the second half of the interview with the "Utleys".

What was the hardest part about your son becoming a zombie?

Jeff: Everything about it was hard. Everything.

Rachael: It was difficult in so many ways.

Jeff: He wasn't allowed to attend school. We had friends--ha! "Friends" who ceased all contact with us immediately.

Rachael: It was painful, watching him struggle.

Jeff: I was harassed at work. Presents left on my desk. A dead squirrel draped on the hood of my car.

Rachael: (Looks at Jeff) I think the hardest thing of all was that his brothers were scared of him, at first.

They were scared of their brother?

Rachael: (Nods) And it hurt him, I know it did, even though he didn't show it. They were cruel about the way they treated him, not intentionally, but I knew they were avoiding him.

How did you help them get over their fear? Or could you?

Rachael: We were patient and didn't try to force acceptance. We tried to make it safe for them to talk about their feelings, while at the same time including Joshua in everything we did as a family. The interaction was helping Joshua regain some control, and as he "returned" in some ways, the boys were more comfortable being with him.

Jeff: The process fed itself.

Rachael: The boys had long talks with our rabbi as well, and that helped greatly. He has been incredibly supportive. It meant so much when others were turning us away.

Jeff: It's strange. Many people ran away, couldn't get away from us fast enough, but others stepped up. Neighbors. There was a petition to the school board to allow Joshua to attend school. And we won.

So Joshua is going back to school?

Rachael: We prefer to homeschool right now. (Looks at Jeff). We're considering moving to Connecticut.

Jeff: There's a program their with the Hunter Institute which fosters inclusion of differently biotic kids in public schools. We're considering it.

Do you have any advice for other families with differently biotic children?

Jeff: Read eveything you can on the subject. The bad and the good. Skip Slydell's books are great. (Laughs) But get the bad stuff at the library; don't give any of those jerks money.

Rachael: Forming a support group with other families with differently biotic children can be very powerful. We have two other families that we meet with on a regular basis in each other's homes, and we correspond with many others on the Internet.

Jeff: (Looks at Rachael, smiles) Rachael contributes to a parenting blogring where she writes about raising a differently biotic kid.

Rachael: I think the most important thing is to love your child. Never stop loving your child. No matter what he or she does, no matter what happens, he or she is still your child. They need your love and approval. Never forget that.


Lita138 said...

Amazing! Very powerful!!!

Stuck_in_the_world_of_the_Living said...

That is awesome. I'm so glad that some people are still fighting the good fight of equality!

Yazzeh said...

Wow, they are amazing

Krystal said...

At least they've got their priorities straight. Unlike some people who go around killing squirrels.
Someone should notify PETA.

Anyway, I'm really glad they're getting support. I wish them the best of luck!

Anonymous said...

:D this made me all happiness and smiles

Gabrielle said...

I like this family :D

edwardandtommylover said...

its great that some familys care

lzz said...

I think that family is a great family!! I wish others were like them :(

Bianca Wilde said...

Awww <3
Aren'tpeople like that just the bees knees?
My heart has been sufficiently warmed...

Werewolf Moon said...

I love this family! They're awesome. They are very...deep? Is that a good word? I think so. The way they regard the whole incident and how they are taking it is very deep.

``Werewolf MOON``

Glee Rewatch Project said...

That family is so kind.

Anonymous said...

It's so great to see a nice, loving family. I'm so happy for their child that he has parents like that.

[Ryan] said...

Wow that was great! At least theres some good people in the world that wont abbandon us.

Becca the Rainbow Monster said...

How cool.
Has anyone looked into scolarships for diferently-biotic kids? like to go to college or something?

Anonymous said...

So fantastic to see (or read, as the case may be) about how supportive some families can be. Mostly, what sticks in my mind, is the families who abandoned their poor kids. But I'm sure these people shall stick with me as well.

By the way, keep writing Tommy.

From one writer to another,
Alice Lynn

Anonymous said...

That is better than the last few... some people don't understand us


Unheard Of said...

well it's about time that we saw one decent family. those last few were really tapdancing on my last good nerve.

are there any new additions to the HH, Tommy? you haven't mentioned it in a while.

Anonymous said...

Rachael and Jeff are two very beautiful people. =] Let's send them a letter of appriciation!! =]

Anonymous said...

i think there is nothing wrong with being a biotic person

Tommy Williams said...


I totally agree.


Anonymous said...

i reed all of them and i thought that the 2ed intervew was the worest!i loved the 3ed ond though!<3 they wher so nice i would take my kid if he/she died i wouent care!!!

Unknown said...

Awesome! I am glad the show had one positive family interview. I feel kind of bad about my earlier remark about religion after seeing that the family's Rabbi was supportive. I guess I mean close minded "religious" people suck.

ScribblerRigby said...

Beautiful. Glad they ended with this one, too - those last two interviews were quickly draining my faith in humanity.

Tommy, this blog is fantastic, and I admire you for keeping it up despite the trouble.

Max said...

That's really moving.

Anonymous said...

Those parents are the best, well other then Faith. They at least took in their kid but they are also making his life better. That's the most pwerful thing I've read all day.