Hedge ~ You bring up a great point!!! As we are looking into figuring out what it is that my two daughters are going through it is so easy to see how any person could fit into the diagnosis of Bipolar!!! That is why I am somewhat relieved that my doctors are not too quick to diagnose my daughter with the disorder. It is somewhat frustrating as well. I would like them to do what they do in the medical field....you have classic symptoms they do testing, they rule out, and they treat and hopefully cure.
However in the world of treating the mind, there is a whole open world of misdiagnosis.....there are some tests that can be run but it could be so easy to convince the mind of another person that they fit into a condition that truly is not occurring.
I am not denying that my daughter has a problem that she needs help with. She is cutting herself and has admittted to wanting to kill herself. The first time she cut herself she said "everyone is doing it". So I thought it was a fad of some type....I was watching MTV and saw a video on of an artist singing with scars displayed openly all over her arms. She sang and was showing them off!!! I do honestly think that peers and MTV have definitely played a role into my daughter's cutting......reading about how it allows you to deal with inner pain will draw you into wanting to try it out yourself like any addiction whether it be alcohol, drugs, smoking....they all are escaping mechanisms to pain and stress.
Teenage years suck as we all know and there is an array of emotions and moods going on as hormones are raging!!! Take any given teen and they will fit into the characteristics of Bipolar!!! Heck...as a perimenopausal woman I do too!!
As they are attempting to diagnose my daughter I sometimes question if I am Bipolar
And my friends are too???
So......as we stand now we have my daughter diagnosed with a "mood disorder". Okay....in time we will see, for now they see it as a temporary condition.
My other daughter started out the same behaviors at my younger daughter's age minus the cutting/suicidal thoughts. We are now wondering if she is Bipolar or has a "mood disorder" too. She started out with anger, irrritability, was extremely argumentative, dissliked any rules imposed upon her. She ran away and constantly spoke of wanting to live elsewhere. She got into angry outbursts whenever things would not go her way. She kicked her dad where it counts. She has thrown parties at our house, drank with friends sneaking our liquor, tried weed. She lies and manipulates and never seems to have any remorse for how her behavior affects the lives of others. If we look back on our teenage years we were all the same in terms of selfishness, lack of better judgement, and experimentation. However, I do see it as being more severe in my two girls. And, the question still remains......is this just normal teenage rebellion or are we Bipolar???
She and her sister are both honor students. My oldest went to live with my brother to pursue her dream of getting into a college in his state that she saw as having a better opportunity applying in state. We made the sacrifices. She did her share of rebellion there too and just about the time she should be hearing about her admission to the college of her dreams, is suspended from highschool awaiting an expulsion hearing and has been arrested for underage drinking on the school premises!!! She is in therapy and the therapist feels that she is an overrebelious teen borderline sociopath!!
How is a mother to know......part of me feels that this is all normal but it is definitely of concern. My youngest needs to be on meds for self injury purposes and we are still regulating them but Hedge the question that you pose keeps me awake every single night as a mother wanting to do what is best for her children!! How do they really know if one is truly Bipolar???? Or has any disorder??? We all are compulsive and obsessive to a degree....we all go through ups & downs.....does that mean we have a "mood disorder"???
I guess I am more venting than anything.....but your post definitely grabbed my attention enough for me to respond in a way that leads me to believe that I ought to be extremely careful before my daughter is diagnosed....for now I am thrilled that she is being treated for a "mood disorder"!!! That could be an array of things and at first I couldn't understand why they couldn't just diagnose her.....I am so use to the medical field of doing their tests and within a day or two knowing what it is they need to treat. With the mind....that is certainly not the case!!
I must admit....that "One Flew Over The Cukoos Nest" has more than entered my mind of late!!! And it certainly scares me!!
Sorry if I rambled on but I just had to let it all out!!!