Pregnant Teacher in China Disappears After Plea for Help From Psychiatric Hospital

She was forcibly admitted to a mental institution after defending another teacher who was fired
By Frank Yue
Frank Yue
Frank Yue
Frank Yue is a Canada-based journalist for The Epoch Times who covers China-related news. He also holds an M.A. in English language and literature from Tianjin Foreign Studies University, China.
December 24, 2021 Updated: December 26, 2021

A Chinese teacher who is pregnant disappeared soon after she secretly sent out her last message for help from a psychiatric hospital, where she said she had been forcibly taken.

“Find a way to save me” was the last plea for help received from Li Tiantian, a teacher in rural Yongshun County, in central China’s Hunan Province.

She wrote several posts online saying that local authorities had been threatening her since Dec. 18. Education authorities, police, and hospital employees forced her to sign her name on documents in a show of her pleading guilty for her online speech. Eventually, she was committed to a psychiatric hospital.

She had posted comments in support of another teacher, named Song Gengyi, from Shanghai Zhendan Vocational College. During class, Song questioned the credibility of the death count of the “Rape of Nanking,” which is officially listed as 300,000 Chinese deaths, and cited a lack of historical records to support the conclusion.

The school immediately fired Song after receiving a complaint from one of her students due to her remarks not being in line with the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) rhetoric on the event.

‘If I Die, That Would Be Two Lives’

“Song didn’t deny the violence during the Nanjing Massacre itself,” Li voiced her support on China’s Twitter-like blogging platform Weibo on Dec. 17. “She just presented her individual viewpoint.”

Li said there was nothing wrong with Song’s actions, and she argued that what was questionable was the student informing on his teacher, authorities who manipulated the reporting, and intellectuals who stayed silent about the incident.

Soon after, Li began receiving threats from officials, according to an internet user named Brother Lou, who relayed a message from Li seeking help at 6:09 p.m. on Dec. 18.

Li said that seven or eight officials from the local education and police authorities suddenly showed up at her front door and coerced her to sign her name on documents admitting her guilt, according to her relayed message. If she refused, she would lose her job and be arrested. They told her that the provincial governor had issued instructions to punish her.

At 4:51 p.m. on Dec. 19, Brother Lou relayed a second message from Li saying the local education authority and the hospital sent people to harass her, requiring her to seek hospital care for injections and medication, citing mental health concerns, according to the message.

“I’m pleading for society’s help,” wrote the teacher. “If I die, that would be two lives!”

A post spread on social media said Li is in her fourth month of pregnancy.

Li’s 7:43 p.m. message on the same day shows that more than 10 people broke into her bedroom and forcibly took her away before she could get properly dressed.

At 9:20 p.m., her last message went to a teacher surnamed Chen, who forwarded it to Brother Lou.

“Teacher Chen, I’m Li Tiantian,” she wrote. “I’m being forcibly held in the psychiatric hospital of Yongshun County by local police.” She said she smuggled the phone in her underwear. “My cellphone is running out of power.

“Find a way to save me!”

The Epoch Times repeatedly reached out to the local public security bureau and the education bureau but received no reply.

Staff in the Xiangxi Prefecture Psychiatric Hospital declined to provide client information or a phone number, citing privacy concerns.

Frank Yue
Frank Yue is a Canada-based journalist for The Epoch Times who covers China-related news. He also holds an M.A. in English language and literature from Tianjin Foreign Studies University, China.