Tuesday, January 24, 2017

What happened to Billy Calhoun from the Children Of Darkness documentary?

To rehash, patient William Calhoun (Billy Calhoun) was featured in the 1983 documentary called Children of Darkness. Billy Calhoun was the patient who was hurting himself so badly from his self-injurious behaviors and being escorted by orderlies around the hospital at the very beginning of the Children Of Darkness documentary.

The Children of Darkness documentary was broadcasted nationally on television in the United States on PBS that same year. The Children of Darkness documentary explored the lack of mental health care in America for juvenile psychiatry. Many seriously emotionally disturbed youth were shown. Richard Kotuk filmed and directed Children of Darkness documentary. Billy Calhoun was another star of the documentary as he was featured all over the place in regard to this documentary. Richard Kotuk focused a portion of his time filming Billy Calhoun due to his strange behavior inside said documentary. Billy Calhoun has a profound case of autism.

William Calhoun (Billy Calhoun) was born in 1963. At the age of 4, he was labeled severely mentally retarded. He was then later diagnosed with autism. As a child, Billy was suffering from severe autism. His severe autism caused him to act out in an aggressive manner as he was dangerous around other and himself. His family could no longer handle him or his dangerous destructive behavior. At the age of 7, he was placed in a state institution called Sagamore Hospital via Sagamore Children’s Hospital. He was more or less abandoned his mother, Mary Calhoun, and family despite that his mother saw him every week until she died. He was in a state of constant panic being unaware of what was going on around him.

During his stay as a patient at the Sagamore Hospital, his self-injurious behaviors worsened as acted more aggressive towards staff. Every 2 to 3 hours, Billy would be “walked” by orderlies around the hospital so his muscles would not atrophy or deteriorate. Billy had attacked hospital staff and orderlies in the past as described in the documentary. Most of the time he was strapped to his bed most of the time during the filming session for this documentary. While at Sagamore Children’s Hospital, Billy underwent intense therapy while being in restraints for 2 1/2 years long. 

Billy Calhoun is still alive and is now at the age of 53. Things have changed. Billy has undergone several behavioral interventions and therapy sessions. Some of his phases eventually passed. The lobotomy and shock therapy never happened. As a result, Billy Calhoun now receives 24 hour care around the clock. He is well cared for. Things have changed, but we can never undo the abuse, trauma, pain, suffering, and torture he went through as a child. What happened there is beyond words.

The self-injurious behaviors and self-destructive behavior is still evident and present. Just to a level that lets him function to the point where he can function to be as aggressive or dangerous as he once was earlier in his lifetime. Billy is now heavily medicated by fair amounts of drugs.

[William Calhoun (Billy Calhoun)’s mother was Mary Calhoun. She has since passed away.]

No comments:

Post a Comment