Joseph arrived in the Babies’ Room at the Shabtai Levi Home when he was 3 days old. His mother, who had delivered him by Caesarean section, suffered from bipolar mood disorder and was transferred to a treatment facility. Several days later, she came to visit Joseph.

During her first visits, Joseph’s mother’s moods fluctuated from tranquil when Joseph would lie peacefully in her arms to moments filled with hostility and tension coupled with bizarre and inappropriate behaviour towards her son and aggressiveness towards the staff.

The staff in the Babies’ Room were witness to swift and extreme mood shifts and there were times when Joseph’s mother could not see or relate to his needs. She would undress him when changing his diaper and leave him naked in a chilly room. She felt that crying and restlessness was good for his development.

When Joseph was 3 weeks old, he was rushed to hospital when he suddenly stopped breathing and remained in intensive care until his condition stabilized. His mother’s bizarre behaviour was noticed in the hospital and after his discharge, she was put under intensive psychiatric supervision and treated with medication.

After two months of treatment, Joseph’s mother began to visit him again. In the beginning, she seemed hesitant and lacked confidence but after meeting with the Shabtai Levi staff and with the help of Joseph’s caregivers, she regained her confidence. She seemed more relaxed and organized when she was with him. She became more receptive to help and more willing to ask for it when she needed it. Father also became part of Joseph’s life and both parents engaged in the treatment that Joseph needed because of his slow development. Joseph is progressing well and is receiving intensive support from both parents. His mother is continuing with her psychiatric treatment and wants to continue her relationship with the staff at Shabtai Levi in order to guarantee the success of her family. At five months, Joseph was able to return to his parents’ home. 


1057 Steeles Avenue West
P.O. Box 81596
Toronto, ON
M2R 3X1


Charitable Number
84441 2056 RR0001