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Old 03-09-2006, 11:23 AM   #1
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Bipolar not ADHD?????

My daughter is 13 and I believe she is bipolar not ADHD like she was diagnosed. Does anyone have any info/experience with bipolar teens? From the research I have done so far, symptoms are so much different in children than they are in adults. I have not approached my doctor or her pediatrician yet as they are the types to discount anything I may think unless I go in armed with facts and information. My daughter appears to be a rapid cycler, going through many different moods in a day. Just the word "no" often sets her off and if she cannot push my buttons, she goes after her little brother. I have been to Pathways seminars that teaches me the tools to acheive the life I want and I have learned that nothing I did made her this way and that it is not my fault. I am NOT a terrible mother although some days she makes me feel that way. I do not have the support from her father and some days he is a major trigger for her. As far a discipline goes, her dad and I are not on the same page....some days I do not even think we are in the same book! It gets so frustarting around here! Her brother and sister have both been diagnosed with ADHD and both have learning difficulties. Someone told me I was not spending enough alone time with my daughter and I told them that I do, and that the only way I could spend any more alone time with her was by moving out and getting our own apartment! Can anyone give me some input to bipolar teens???? Help!

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Old 03-16-2006, 05:55 AM   #2
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Re: Bipolar not ADHD?????

First of all,its not your fault you are very right about that.sometimes our hubbys live in denial,its much easier for them,mine was there too.
I looked for your post here when I saw you had posted here and on the research board but it didn't have the same heading and i missed it.we can chat a bit more freely here than on the research board.

my youngest son,who was 16 at the time,developed what is called Bi polar III because of the SSRIs he was was not til we got him to a doc who knew just what was going on and got him the heck off of the SSRIs did we finally get our son back.

just what meds is your daughter currently on?this is a very important question.Is she on any SSRI or other anti Ds presently or in the past?This type of bi polar can either be 'brought out' in someone with bi polar tendencies or as in my sons case,with absolutely no actual family Hx of any sort of actual mental health disorder in either side,he feels his particular bi polar was actually created by his sensitivity to the SSRIs he was taking to treat depression,which was not a severe type,only mild.

there IS hope,K? things do not have to be like this.unfortunetly it will take a very knowledgable doc to actually Dx what the big issues are here but you are doing your part by just researching least THAT gives you a bit of power back on your side for the time being anyway.I DO know what you are going thru.ain't life grand?

i would start researching bi polar III and also(not sure if i am spelling this right)cyclothemia?The bi polar III and this particular condidtion are somewhat the same and some docs use them interchangebly,but there are spome subtle differences.try doing the most research on these two particular conditions and see where theat leads you.

Was her behavoir always like this from a child on or did something appear to just 'trigger" it at some point in time?If this behavior started at a younger age,ther is always the possibility that her meds may have caused the behavior to actually escalate(no two people will react the same exact way on any sort of meds,it all depends on there individual body physiology and other factors)or she could also possibly have two actual seperate conditions going on at the same time.the key here is SYMPTOMS,how and when they actually presented themselves.

just a good suggestion here,but if you have not already done so, obtain ALL and i mean ALL of her medical records thus far.and i mean anything that has been generated on your daughter since the first onset of actual symptoms to the present.Everysingle doc she has seen any hospital(inpatient and outpatient and ER)that she has been to,just everything.start reading thru all of the stuff,espescially the clinic notes that every doc makes after any actual visit with them?Trust me, you will glean a ton of actual info that none of the docs ever bothered to tell you.I keep total; and complete records on my son and myself(I have way too many major medical problems to even list,trust me,lol)besides the bi polar issue my son has been thru hell and back with liver failure and transplant(this experience actually caused him to develop PTSD)and a major head injury and double skull fracture,so now we are not only dealing with the bi polar aspect but also some cognitive issues due to a brain bleed into the frontal lobe.

but getting and keeping up to date,all of your daughters records is really crucial espescially if she is seeing more than one can keep the most important info in an expanding folder that you can take with you to all her appts and if she has a need to see an ER doc.I know we had to go to the ER several times with some of my sons 'anger explosions from hell".just know that you are not alone in all this,K?Just keep doing what you are doing right now,research.and do not take crap from the docs.always remeber that they work for YOU,not the other way around.they don't scare me anymore as I have seen way too many of them totally screw things up from time to time,between me and my son,we have seen wayyyy too many to even count now.hang in there Kari,you will eventually hit upon the answers.good luck hon,Marcia
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Old 03-16-2006, 06:10 AM   #3
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Re: Bipolar not ADHD?????

I totally agree with feelbad: it may very well be bipolar disorder if these symptoms suddenly appeared within the last few months or so. However, if she has always acted like this, it may still be rapid cycling bipolar disorder, but it also could be something else. I, like your daughter, have always been moody and will explode into random fits; I was put on the mood stabilizer Lamictal this past fall, which has helped immensely, for proposed cyclothymia (a VERY mild form of bipolar disorder), but I know now that I'm not cyclothymic. The mood swings and outbursts are from my recent and completely correct diagnosis of Asperger's. Before putting your daughter on a whole bunch of medications that may be potentially unnecessary, keep researching and sorting out her symptoms. Oh, and as a sidenote, cyclothymia and bipolar III are very different. Cyclothymia is often refered to as bipolar IV disorder, and is a chronic condition where the person will constantly shift between mild hypomania and mild dysthymia. Bipolar III is bipolar (hypo)mania induced by the use of an organic substance, most notably anti-depressants. If you have any questions, feel free to ask! God bless!
"Not everything that steps out of line, and thus 'abnormal,' must necessarily be 'inferior.'"
-Hans Asperger

Last edited by GatsbyLuvr1920; 03-16-2006 at 06:14 AM.

Old 03-28-2006, 12:19 PM   #4
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Re: Bipolar not ADHD?????

Thank you both so much! Here's a little background: My daughter has been like this since she was two. She has always had a Dr. Jekyl/Mr. Hyde personality. She would be happy go lucky one moment and then a little demon from hell the next and would constantly switch throughout the day. AT 5 she was throwing knives at her sister and I was scared that I would not be able to knock her sister out of the way in time some day. One day it came too close for my liking, and I restrained her, left a bruise on her arm and went to the doctor. Children's aid society was called and we were sent off to a pyschologist who diagnosed her as ADHD with agressive and impulsive tendancies and prescribed ritalin. Her tantrums would range anywhere from 4-8 hours, yes hours, at any given time before and also after ritalin was prescribed. She was switched to Concerta and Risperdal about two years ago. As of late, it appears that she may have been molested last October while staying at a friends house. I called the pediatrician on Monday and felt like kicking him before our conversation was over (please check out my thread "AHHH!I just want to scream) for more on that. I am taking a stand and want to be totally armed with info for when I go in to see the doctor in the middle of April. Thanks for the reassurance that it is not me and also the insite that her father may be in denial...never thought of that! Thanks again

Old 04-01-2006, 05:51 AM   #5
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Re: Bipolar not ADHD?????

things are always sooo much easier in the 'land of denial" my hubby used to spend alot of time there when he didn't want to have to face and deal with the crappy stuff.It does appear from what you have posted that your daughters issues have been there since birth so the bi polar III is definitely not the issue like it was with my son.but that does not always mean that the meds are not also playing part in the overall behavior problems.sometimes they just fuel the fire ya know what I mean?

how are things going?i wish you luck on the upcomming appt,hopefully this doc has some new and improved ideas.let me know how it goes.Marcia

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