Our Unbreakable Bond: Mum And Daughter Both Have Brittle Bone Disease

DOROTHY HOHL: I like having somebody around who knows what I am going through because
I don’t have to explain it to her. COMM: Dorothy Hohl has osteogenesis imperfecta, a condition causing brittle bones and stunted
growth. DOROTHY HOHL: It’s a genetic disorder which affects the collagen in your system. Our bones
are very fragile and brittle and they break very easily, sometimes without trauma. COMM: Her daughter Savannah also has the condition, which Dorothy found out just the week before
she was born. DOROTHY HOHL: I cried for 10 minutes and then I got over it. Really, no that’s exactly
what happened. It was like it’s okay, it’s gonna be okay. I’m okay, she’s gonna be
okay. SAVANNAH LORENCE: I will say to people that I feel privileged from being born like this
because when you are in an accident and you then have to use a wheelchair, then your whole
life is completely devastating and I learnt how to live one way once. So I think that
contributes to some sort of normal life. I mean it is normal for us. DOROTHY HOHL: I was born with osteogenesis imperfecta. There was no history of it in
my family at all. So it was a spontaneous mutation. But Savannah had a 50/50 chance
of inheriting it from me. COMM: Despite that risk and the fact that she would be raising her baby alone, Dorothy
never hesitated to go through with the pregnancy. DOROTHY HOHL: Personally, I don’t think that men who are forced into fatherhood make
very good fathers. I made the decision that I want to continue the pregnancy. He said,
“I don’t want to” and I said, “that’s fine.” DOROTHY HOHL: I’ve actually felt the things that I knew she would be feeling. You know the
fear and the pain and all of that, and that’s not easy to deal with when you know what your
child is going to go through but again, I know I got through it, and I knew that no
matter what the good days have always outnumbered the bad. COMM: Both mother and daughter are 4’2” tall and have suffered many fractures. SAVANNAH LORENCE: It’s hard to say that like having surgery all the time is a positive
experience, when you don’t focus on the bad stuff, I went to a children’s orthopaedic
hospital and I would see the same people all the time and so there were good things about it. COMM: Dorothy was raised to be able to take care of herself. DOROTHY HOHL: I am really grateful to my parents. They really wanted me to be independent. My
father always said that you are gonna have to learn to get by in a world that’s not
necessarily an environment that was built for you. COMM: And she’s instilled the same in her daughter. DOROTHY HOHL: I have insisted that she do things for herself and not depend upon other
people. SAVANNAH LORENCE: I would be crying because I couldn’t figure how to do something, she
would say, “No. You just have to figure it out.” And that was tough when you were
young and you feel like your parents don’t care when they do. They just have to do that
to get you learn. DOROTHY HOHL: I was always very hard on her like, “Yeah, I know you are in pain, but
you can still do it, Savannah. Yeah, I know it’s hard for you, but you can still do
it.” SAVANNAH LORENCE: Yeah. Exactly. DOROTHY HOHL: Able-bodied people do things that are hard all the time. It’s not easy
to climb Mount Everest, but people push themselves and they do it. Now maybe our Mount Everest
is getting a plate off the bottom shelf of an upper cabinet, but that doesn’t mean you
shouldn’t try to do it. COMM: The pair were inseparable when Savannah was growing up, but last summer she moved
to Pennsylvania for college. DOROTHY HOHL: We’ve been together for 19 years. Every day, 24 hours a day and then
all of a sudden she’s not here anymore. The week before she left, I didn’t sleep
at all. I kept waking up in the middle of the night thinking, “Next week this time
she’s not gonna be here”, and it was really, it was very difficult for me. It was a very
heart-wrenching situation. COMM: But they make up for it when they do see each other. SAVANNAH LORENCE: We live on the coast. So we like to go to the beach together a lot.
We cook a lot together. She like spawned my love of cooking and baking. DOROTHY HOHL: When she comes home from school, usually like a week before she is coming home,
I say, “So what do you wanna have for dinner, while you are here? Is there anything special
you want me to make?” And we plan out our meals in advance. SAVANNAH LORENCE: When I was in the hospital, she would bring cookies and fried chicken
and potato salad and everything, so I don’t have to eat hospital food. DOROTHY HOHL: Yes, we share a, an absolute disdain for hospitals. COMM: And now Savannah is thinking about what life may hold after she finishes college. SAVANNAH LORENECE: I do want kids at some point. I would like to adopt, I think, probably.
Things have been easier because I think she’s just told me. You know, I know that she got
to this place. She had a great career. I am doing something completely different than
she did, but I know that I can still have a good career, live on my own and be independent
and not rely on other people.


  1. When you know that your children are likely to suffer from a horrible disease, you should not have children. This is pure selfishness and should be recognized as such. Just as we recognize unethical dog breeders, who cause painful diseases in dogs.

  2. I think that it is cruel to have children knowing your child has a strong change at the disease you have.

  3. They are both very good people & it's rude of me… But isn't it a bit selfish to bring a child into the world with a 50-50 risk of getting the same horrible disease?

  4. Pure selfishness !!! 50% chance of transmitting your shitty genes and still taking the risk of getting pregnant and bring another person into this already harsh world with that kind of disability !!! Wow !!!!
    SJW alert 🚨!!!

  5. Easy to say you don't understand why she had a child maybe it was what she always wanted bless them both




  7. I have brittle bones too, no other person in my family has it I have stage four and I have it easy I am 5’3 14 years old and I’ve only broken 6 major bones but it affects my joints a lot, I mean a lot but these girls are so strong

  8. Even though ppl sre judging the mother, it seems that she handled raising her daughter and now they are the living the best if their lives with not any major problems.

  9. She cried for 10 minutes, then got over it? Seriously? Sorry, but it was not about her….she knew he child could get this disease? I would NEVER do such a thing. I think it is extremely selfish. "I think I'll make a diseased child who will suffer…but that's OK because I will understand her pain."

  10. Amazing pair of inspiration, beauty and love! Many blessings to both of you. I pray lot of miracles will happen in your life.

  11. this is how me and my mom are (not this disorder)

    we have the same medical problems and totally understand each other

  12. very selfish to have a child when you know there is a 50 50 chance of them being born with the same pain and struggles you had to endure due to the disease I dont understand why people do this

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  14. there’s nothing wrong with being a disabled parent, but I don’t think it’s right to have a child yourself when you know they would have such a great chance of having a serious condition like that

  15. Making me emotional their relationship is amazing I love that they don’t let their condition hold them back

  16. @1:27 Is that VW bug a smart choice car for them? I mean she's having to take the wheels off to go anywhere. I know it's hard to make life changes and move, but I I personally would buy a cargo van and move to a house with no steps and a sidewalk with a super walmart around the corner.

  17. This is a condition that I think people with this condition should not have kids it sad see that had the same condition but iam proud of them it not a easy life

  18. An inspiration, I have learned you can't depend on anyone. Congrats baby girl you will make it πŸŽ‚β€πŸ‘πŸΏπŸ€™πŸΎπŸ‘πŸ‘ŠπŸ¨πŸ§πŸ™βœŒπŸ‘ŒπŸ˜š

  19. They should get a tiny house and house furniture that is suitable for their height and condition so they won’t have to fracture as many bones

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