ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- We may never know what went through Adam Lanza's mind before he committed one of the most heinous crimes in our nation's history. But those who knew him say he was a loner, a recluse, which is a warning sign of mental illness, say local therapists Jack Merwin and Karen Selig.
"Children who are really withdrawn and seem to be depressed. Or hyperactive on the other end," they said.
Other, more serious, signs include: bed wetting, cruelty to animals, fire setting.
They're signs, Merwin and Selig say, parents should watch for with their children. When you see this behavior, it might be time for professional help. But they say many people don't get help, because of the social stigma attached to mental illness. Families don't want the label.
"I think that people resist coming and getting treatment," said Selig.
Lanza's relatives say he had a learning disability, but we haven't seen any evidence at this point that he had been diagnosed with a mental illness. But for those of us still struggling to make sense of his motive, it's the only reasonable conclusion.
"The idea is to get help before you get to a point where you need a diagnosis perhaps," said Merwin.