My mother-in-law, Darlene Fae Hamp, passed away on January 5th, 2018 around 10:00 PM, at her apartment complex in Lincoln City, Oregon. She was only sixty years old.
Darlene had suffered from a psychological disorder, called “Conversion Disorder” for most of her adult life. This heartbreaking disorder manifests itself by converting psychological pain and trauma into physiological symptoms. In Darlene’s case, those symptoms were so severe that she left the workforce entirely when her daughter (my wife) , Paulene, was only 15 years-old. Paulene had to drop out of High School to take care of her mother and did so for about the next 10 + years. Paulene had to switch roles and become the parent instead of child, of a 39 year old woman. Despite years of attempts by Paulene and I, to get her mother to accept help for her Conversion Disorder, Darlene refused to seek the appropriate mental health treatment. Darlene was afraid of the stigma placed on mental health problems by her family, and was not able to overcome the familial and personal guilt enough, to seek the help she so desperately needed.
Part of the ugliness of Conversion Disorder, is that those under its sway, can be blind to their own progress. In Darlene’s case, she could not see (visually process) her own hands and fingers moving, because her belief was that she was crippled in her left arm. Her guilt and apathy spread, despite having no actual physical malady. Her brain told her she was a victim, and her body followed suit.
Darlene’s condition deteriorated until she was nearly a quadriplegic. She was confined to a wheelchair and a neck brace because her body had atrophied so far from inactivity that she needed a full time care giver. What is heart breaking is that, Darlene’s unwillingness to seek help for her mental disorder caused nothing short of a slow form of suicide. Instead of treating the actual issue, her medical doctors layered pain medication upon pain medication. Her body atrophied to a point it could no longer continue and she died.
Darlene had been living on Social Security disability income for the past two decades and has been less than fiscally responsible with those funds. Conversion Disorder is a selfish disorder. Because of her disorder, Darlene left no life insurance, no assets, no Will and Testament, no last wishes, or requests. What she left was heartache and bills.
In this Go Fund Me campaign, I ask you to help my beloved wife Paulene. I ask that you take the final passing of her mother and make it a blessing to others. With no insurance, we are faced with bills we cannot pay on our own. We are prideful people and would never want to ask for help. The Ranger in me hates to admit, I’m done. I’m tapped. I don’t have the funds to cover Darlene’s memorial and bills. But there’s something I know about the Ranger and Cop community, you all take care of your own and we love you all for that.
If you are willing to support Darlene’s memorial fund, know that any funds that come in from this campaign that are in excess of what is needed to cover her memorial, will go to the Research of Conversion Disorder so that no other family ever has to live with this completely preventable loss.
God Bless you, and Rangers Lead The Way!
- The Bairds
- Katie Bighill
Lincoln City, OR