My first reaction to the little I first heard was the sadness expressed in the first messages here.
I've been reading the news stories on Yahoo to get more information. The more I read there, the more I'm bothered about the father. It sounds as if Andrea had given up all she wanted to in life for her husband. Not working and home schooling both sound like what he wanted. She's from a Catholic family of 5 children, but the size of the family sounds like his idea as well. How can any one woman be expected to care full time for 5 children under the age of 7? At the very least having the older ones in school would have helped. No wonder she felt she was doing a terrible job & was damaging them.
Before her first depression & suicide attempt they had sold their house & furnishings, to either buy bigger or take off & travel (different neighbors, different accounts). Never doing either, they lived with her parents first, then bought a smaller house. Their old neighbors seem to have known her, but the new neighbors did not. Sounds to me like something was unravelling for some time.
My heart breaks for the children who knew Mom was killing them. I feel deeply distrubed by her actions, if she could call for help immediatly after, why not before? I also respect Sorcha's "been there" story. Sorcha could have, "I stopped myself, why not her?" Instead she tries to give us understanding.
I have a co-worker who served on a jury for homocide. New York did not have the death penalty at the time, but still she found it an awful & awesome responsibility. I came close to being on a jury for a child abuse case & was glad when others were selected. It's so easy to pass our coffee break verdicts, but being called on to actually judge would be terribly difficult.