Ex-Husband of Andrea Yates, Who Drowned Her 5 Children in Tub, Urges Forgiveness of Lindsay Clancy

"The next step of forgiveness, I'd say, is understanding it's a sickness," Russell Yates tells Inside Edition.

Lindsay Clancy, the Massachusetts mom charged with murdering her three young children, is receiving support from someone who lived through a similar tragedy.

Russell Yates, the ex-husband of Andrea Yates, lost his five children when his wife drowned them in a tub.

He now has a message for another husband who is living through this unspeakable tragedy. 

"The next step of forgiveness, I'd say is understanding, it's a sickness," Russell told NewsNation. "Like in this case you can do all you can at home, but you really can't protect yourself from a psychotic person at home.

"They get up in the middle of the night and you know light the house on fire," he continued.

Attorney George Parnham, who represented Andrea Yates, tells Inside Edition: "To come to a realization that you took the lives of the people you gave life to, they have to live with this for the rest of their lives."

Patrick Clancy has publicly stated that he forgives his wife for her actions, and both her and Lindsay's defense team contend that she suffered from postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis.

Andrea Yates also exhibited signs of severe postpartum depression and psychosis as well as schizophrenia long before she kiled her five children. The defense team said during the trial that she experienced a nervous breakdown two years before the killings, resulting in two suicide attempts and two hospitalizations so she could receive psychiatric care. But prosecutors did not see this as a defense against her actions.

And in Clancy's case, prosecutors in Plymouth County alleged that the mother is a cold and calculated murderer as she was arraigned from a hospital bed at a mental health facility earlier this week. 

"She used Apple Maps to make sure she would have enough time to strangle each child before her husband returned from where she had sent him," said Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Sprague. "The defendant did not take advantage of the situation when her husband left the home that night. She created the situation." 

Patrick Clancy returned home to find his wife injured after a failed suicide attempt, according to an arrest report obtained by Inside Edition Digital. He then went downstairs to find the couple's three children had been strangled in the basement.

The two oldest children—Cora 5, and Dawson, 3—were pronounced dead at the scene. Seven-month-old Callan was rushed to the hospital but succumbed to his injuries two days later. Clancy is charged with two counts of murder, three counts of strangulation and three counts of assault and battery with a deadly weapon. She entered a plea of not guilty to all charges at her arraignment. 

Dr. Catherine Birndorf is the medical director of The Motherhood Center, which provides supportive services for new and expecting moms and birthing people. The Motherhood Center offers access to support groups for new mothers and birthing people, individual therapy and more intensive services.

Birndorf treats people with postpartum depression. "She was not in her 'right mind' when she made those decisions," Birndorf says of Clancy to Inside Edition. "She believed that by killing her kids, killing herself, that she was probably helping them. She was not in a sane state of mind."

Birndorf says that some patients need to be medicated, noting that those suffering from postpartum psychosis often are prescribed, at a minimum, a mood stabilizer and an anti-psychotic. "Those are two serious medications that work very well," she says. 

Clancy's defense attorney said that she was over-medicated, taking 12 different drugs over a four-month period.

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