Suffer the Little Children

Episode 58: Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy (Part 1)

April 21, 2021

Most of us have heard of Munchausen syndrome by proxy thanks to its prevalence in popular culture, including TV, movies, books, and, of course, news articles, but what is it exactly? Is it a crime, a cry for help, a mental disorder, or something else entirely? 

For the first time, to raise awareness of this insidious form of child abuse, I will cover Munchausen syndrome by proxy as a broad topic spanning several episodes instead of concentrating on one case. In part one of the series, I’ll tell you what studies and experts have to say about this commonly misunderstood condition, and I’ll also tell you the first part of the story of 5-year-old Garnett Spears. Garnett’s death in January of 2014 was the culmination of five brutal years of unnecessary surgical procedures, medications, hospitalizations, induced illnesses, and gratuitous suffering at the hands of his mother, and the egregiousness of Garnett’s story has made his one of the most well known cases of Munchausen syndrome by proxy to date. 

This is part 1 of the baffling phenomenon of Munchausen Syndrome by proxy. 

Links mentioned in the episode:

Dr. Marc Feldman’s latest book

Dr. Feldman’s bio

Andrea Dunlop’s latest book, We Came Here to Forget

John Glatt’s book, My Sweet Angel: The True Story of Lacey Spears, the Seemingly Perfect Mother Who Murdered Her Son in Cold Blood

Huge thanks to today’s sponsors:

On the Military True Crime Addict podcast, host David Kokish covers lesser known cases involving military personnel, veterans, family members, and others associated with the military, giving voices to the victims of these crimes and raising awareness for those impacted by them. 

Smile Brilliant provides teeth whitening and oral care products customized just for you! Use my coupon code to save 30% by clicking here.

Shout-out to The Jury Room Podcast, whose promo you heard at the top of the show! 

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This podcast is researched, written, hosted, edited, and produced by Laine. 

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