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Old 03-04-2006, 11:45 AM   #1
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goody2shuz HB Usergoody2shuz HB User
Daughter May be Bipolar

I see that there is a wealth of info here and I am in the scary phase of having my 14 year old daughter evaluated and diagnosed. She has been on an adolescent psych unit since Wednesday and this is her first hospitalization. As a mother this is such a scary road and I am hoping that some of you here can help me see through the fog that seems to have taken over.

My daughter over the past 4 months has become quite agitated, angry, frustrated and generally unhappy at home. She has a history of cutting, a first episode in 2004. She does well academically is an honor student but her behavior has changed quite significantly over the past 4 or 5 months.

Some of the behaviors that we see are extreme agitation, frustration in the home....feeling punished and as if there are too many rules. She has runaway from home and wants to live elsewhere and that is all she can think about. She has also participated in extremely sexual convos on the internet with boys at school and while on vacation often saving them as homework or in a journal page left torn out on her bed. Her appetite has increased significantly to the point that she never feels full. One teacher said that she stole a test from her office when she gets 100 on the tests and has written sexually explicit thoughts in Spanish on her test papers as well. She has lied and manipulated situations to the point where we were most recently investigated by CPS for a scratch on her face that she has since admitted she had lied about in order to be able to be removed from the home. She took half a bottle of advil 5 months ago and since she has been admitted she has admitted to cutting on at least 2 more occasions that we were unaware of (one time I questioned her about scratches on her arms which she said came from thorns while running through the woods which I had believed because she had run through the woods but she had lied) The cutting is often a result of having an argument with friends or family. She also admits to wanting to end her life and thinks about it often with a specific plan (this was talked about once she was admitted for evalutaion).

Our pediatrician, the school social worker, our daughter & ourselves agreed that the inpatient evaluation was the best way to go. However, our daughter after the second day in, begged us to take her home and stated that she was told by friends to "color things up" in order to be admitted so she could get away from us and that she was sorry & had learned her lesson. This worries me because how do we know what is true & what is fabricated....even the suicidal thoughts....how do we know for sure that she needs to even be on meds???

The psychiatrist at first felt that she had a mild depression and that the suicidal thoughts were impulsive. She wanted to start my daughter on Celexa after a day on the unit and we asked for her to hold off until our daughter were observed a little more. The next morning (yesterday) the doctor called stating that she saw more manic behavior (my daughter was happily skippping down the hall and giggily) and would not wnat to place her on Celexa because it could trigger more manic behavior (which was one of my concerns since they had not yet clearly diagnosed my daughter)

We all agreed that it was most important to control my daughters suicidal thoughts and the doctor decided that Abilify would be a better drug of choice. They are leaning towards a mild bipolar but have informed me that at this point in time during adolescence it is difficult to diagnose a particular disorder and that they are observing traits and treating them. Is this correct?? I was thinking that while my daughter was admitted they would have a definitive diagnosis by the time she was discharged but I am being told that they will not.....that they will discharge her and with continued evaluation by a psychologist and psychiatrst perscribing meds she will eventually be diagnosed. For now they intend to treat the traits and symptoms....most importatnly to lower the frustration, agitation and anger that may lead to impulsive suicidal tendencies/thoughts. They feel that the Abilify will do this.

I am a mom who is a "do not medicate unless absolutely necessary"!! I had no meds during both of my labors and have never given either of my kids a med unless absolutely necessary. And I do not want to start doing so either.

My older daughter went through similar teenage rebellion, not liking rules, impulsive type behavior, fighting, cursing you name it...it wasn't fun and she is 17 still making her share of mistakes but never had the suicidal thoughts/cutting. She was always wishing to be away from us as well in terms of feeling that she was punished too much but we honestly had simple guidelines and responsibilities as other parents do with compromising and the such. I am soo torn wondering if this is all part of the teenage behavior....I know that the suicidal thoughts must be taken seriously....but I am fighting this whole bipolar thing with every ounce of my being thinking that it is just a phase that she will get through and will end eventually with a little help along the way. Am I right??? Am I expecting too much??? Am I in denial or not seeing things clearly??? Please help me out to see what is up ahead for me.

The Abilify was started last night...she is on 2.5mg at bedtime. My daughter has a history of GERD (gastroesophogeal reflux disease) and said this morning on the phone that she had some heartburn with the med but otherwise didn't feel anything different. I am going to see if we can switch the timing to dinnertime in order to help her with the heartburn.

Any advice or support would be so much appreciated. It is a scary time for our family and it would be nice to know if we are doing the right thing and what may be up ahead on the road. I was told by a wonderful cyberfriend that this is the best place to be. And she never lies!!! (thanks, Ruth )

~ Goody

Last edited by goody2shuz; 03-04-2006 at 11:56 AM.

 
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Old 03-05-2006, 02:00 AM   #2
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Hmmm, you said this all started about 4 or 5 months ago? I'd start looking for something that was tramatic that happened around that time. Was there a death in the family? Was she raped or molested? Did yall move? Divorce? She get into drugs?

If this all just came out of no where there had to have been something that triggered it. Figure out what that was and get her into therapy so she can deal with it. Also, you need to make sure you communicate with her. Ask her how she's feeling. When she says fine, keep pressing her. She wants you to be interested but she doesn't want you to know it.

I was DXed with BiPolar when I was 12 but I don't think I am. A lot of things happened that year as well as the next 2 and I think I was just trying to cope with it. I already had problems from being abused as a child and then when I was 12 alot of things happend all with in a span of a few months. My parents got divorced and my dad moved away, my great grandmother died who I was very close to, I was molested by my grandfather while we were vistiting them in GA, I had sex(raped since I was only 12) for the first time with a 20 year old man, and I had just started Jr. High and all of my friends turned against me because I stuck up for someone who they didn't like.

Anyway, it was a pretty rough year and I really didn't know how to deal with it all. My mom wasn't really there since she was dealing with her own stuff and I had no one to talk to since all of my "friends" had turned their backs on me. I started cutting on myself and tried to commit suicide a couple of times. I started having sex and acting very promiscuous. My grades starting falling, I ran away a few times. My parents took me to the hospital and then I went to an inpatient treatment facility. I was in and out of there and a few others for the next few years.

If the place she is at is a short term facility, get her out ASAP. All the ones that I went to were nothing but a "fun time" and I learned some bad things about how to cut and where and how to hide things from my parents, Lots of things I shouldn't have. They have so much free time in those that the only thing to do is talk to each other and watch movies. The doctors don't really care, all they want is the money. You can't really help someone in a week and they know that. They don't get too involved either and just hand out medicine like it's candy while throwing around labels to make it look legit.

Long term facilites are a little better since they know they will be able to get to know the child and go a little more in depth. They helped me a little bit but not enough to justify spending all the money my parents spent and taking away the years of my life. Regular therapy and my parents being receptive would have done wonders.

BTW some of the people who work in those facilities are predators. Not only in the short term but also the long term treatment centers. I was molested by a staffmember while I was at a long term treatment center. I was flirting with the guy, you know testing out my newfound sexual power and then when it got to where they wanted to do something I didn't want to. I was scared and had only had sex like 2 times and he was an older man. They didn't care at that point. Like I said I was very sexual since I had been molested as a child and that's what tends to happen to someone who has had that experience.

I prolly shouldn't be telling you some of this stuff. I don't want to scare you. I just wnat to let you know what I went through so maybe you can help your daughter to go a different path then I went.

It sounds like you are very caring and interested in making sure she is taken care of. She needs that right now more then ever. Find out what is going on with her. More then likely she wants to talk about it, you just gotta keep at it because sometimes kids don't think that their parents will understand. But do it in a way that doesn't intimidate her and try not to get frustrated.

I really hope that everything goes well with your family. I hope she has learned her lesson and straightens up but it's not going to happen over night. Get ready for the long haul. Hopefully it wont take that long but be prepared if it does. I will be praying for you and your family and I wish you good luck!

Last edited by jennfaery; 03-05-2006 at 02:02 AM.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 02:20 AM   #3
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Also, if she just needs someone to talk to or if she needs some counciling just go that route. Don't medicate unless she is showing severe signs of Bipolar. Some of those meds have been shown to make children suicidal/homicidal and from personal experience it is true.

This might be a phase like you said. She could have gotten a new friend who is having problems and she might just be trying to act like her. There are all sorts of things that could be going on.

She also is a teenager and the hormones that are running through their bodies as well as the peer pressure is nothing to be disregarded. It's a tough time as I am sure you remember. Just try to understand where she is coming from.

She will try to manipulate and do everything she can to get what she wants. All teens do to some extent. You just gotta find a balance with trying to be understanding but have bounderies at the same time. Just remember to be consistant.

I went through this process from your daughters point of veiw so I know what she is feeling to some extent. If you have any questions, please, let me know and I will try to answer them as best as possible. I don't know everything but dealing with the mental health system for a few years taught me a little and I would love to be able to help someone who is going through something similar.

I have you and your family in my prayers and I hope you can work though this difficult time. Please, keep me updated on how you and your daughter are doing.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 11:08 AM   #4
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Quote:
Originally Posted by goody2shuz
I see that there is a wealth of info here and I am in the scary phase of having my 14 year old daughter evaluated and diagnosed. She has been on an adolescent psych unit since Wednesday and this is her first hospitalization. As a mother this is such a scary road and I am hoping that some of you here can help me see through the fog that seems to have taken over.

My daughter over the past 4 months has become quite agitated, angry, frustrated and generally unhappy at home. She has a history of cutting, a first episode in 2004. She does well academically is an honor student but her behavior has changed quite significantly over the past 4 or 5 months.

Some of the behaviors that we see are extreme agitation, frustration in the home....feeling punished and as if there are too many rules. She has runaway from home and wants to live elsewhere and that is all she can think about. She has also participated in extremely sexual convos on the internet with boys at school and while on vacation often saving them as homework or in a journal page left torn out on her bed. Her appetite has increased significantly to the point that she never feels full. One teacher said that she stole a test from her office when she gets 100 on the tests and has written sexually explicit thoughts in Spanish on her test papers as well. She has lied and manipulated situations to the point where we were most recently investigated by CPS for a scratch on her face that she has since admitted she had lied about in order to be able to be removed from the home. She took half a bottle of advil 5 months ago and since she has been admitted she has admitted to cutting on at least 2 more occasions that we were unaware of (one time I questioned her about scratches on her arms which she said came from thorns while running through the woods which I had believed because she had run through the woods but she had lied) The cutting is often a result of having an argument with friends or family. She also admits to wanting to end her life and thinks about it often with a specific plan (this was talked about once she was admitted for evalutaion).

Our pediatrician, the school social worker, our daughter & ourselves agreed that the inpatient evaluation was the best way to go. However, our daughter after the second day in, begged us to take her home and stated that she was told by friends to "color things up" in order to be admitted so she could get away from us and that she was sorry & had learned her lesson. This worries me because how do we know what is true & what is fabricated....even the suicidal thoughts....how do we know for sure that she needs to even be on meds???

The psychiatrist at first felt that she had a mild depression and that the suicidal thoughts were impulsive. She wanted to start my daughter on Celexa after a day on the unit and we asked for her to hold off until our daughter were observed a little more. The next morning (yesterday) the doctor called stating that she saw more manic behavior (my daughter was happily skippping down the hall and giggily) and would not wnat to place her on Celexa because it could trigger more manic behavior (which was one of my concerns since they had not yet clearly diagnosed my daughter)

We all agreed that it was most important to control my daughters suicidal thoughts and the doctor decided that Abilify would be a better drug of choice. They are leaning towards a mild bipolar but have informed me that at this point in time during adolescence it is difficult to diagnose a particular disorder and that they are observing traits and treating them. Is this correct?? I was thinking that while my daughter was admitted they would have a definitive diagnosis by the time she was discharged but I am being told that they will not.....that they will discharge her and with continued evaluation by a psychologist and psychiatrst perscribing meds she will eventually be diagnosed. For now they intend to treat the traits and symptoms....most importatnly to lower the frustration, agitation and anger that may lead to impulsive suicidal tendencies/thoughts. They feel that the Abilify will do this.

I am a mom who is a "do not medicate unless absolutely necessary"!! I had no meds during both of my labors and have never given either of my kids a med unless absolutely necessary. And I do not want to start doing so either.

My older daughter went through similar teenage rebellion, not liking rules, impulsive type behavior, fighting, cursing you name it...it wasn't fun and she is 17 still making her share of mistakes but never had the suicidal thoughts/cutting. She was always wishing to be away from us as well in terms of feeling that she was punished too much but we honestly had simple guidelines and responsibilities as other parents do with compromising and the such. I am soo torn wondering if this is all part of the teenage behavior....I know that the suicidal thoughts must be taken seriously....but I am fighting this whole bipolar thing with every ounce of my being thinking that it is just a phase that she will get through and will end eventually with a little help along the way. Am I right??? Am I expecting too much??? Am I in denial or not seeing things clearly??? Please help me out to see what is up ahead for me.

The Abilify was started last night...she is on 2.5mg at bedtime. My daughter has a history of GERD (gastroesophogeal reflux disease) and said this morning on the phone that she had some heartburn with the med but otherwise didn't feel anything different. I am going to see if we can switch the timing to dinnertime in order to help her with the heartburn.

Any advice or support would be so much appreciated. It is a scary time for our family and it would be nice to know if we are doing the right thing and what may be up ahead on the road. I was told by a wonderful cyberfriend that this is the best place to be. And she never lies!!! (thanks, Ruth )

~ Goody
There could be something bothering her, what's wrong with a little psychotherapy? Why would she want to get away from you? I'd investigate that more.

Also, there is a possibility of drug or alcohol abuse that could cause such behaviors....alcohol, pot, other drugs are a mix of stimulants and depressants, uppers and downers that mess up brain chemistry and can cause things like mania, depression and cutting so I don't know if she's involved in things like that or will admit she is into those things. Also, the withdrawal periods inbetween use can cause simular behaviors.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 02:18 PM   #5
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Thanks, Jennfaery and Jennita. We are more confused than ever. We just returned from a visit....our daughter had her first grounds pass for an hour. We brought our dog up picked up some dunkin donuts and slurpees and went to see her. The entire hour she became argumentative bringing up how she has no problems, how the nurse on the unit even asks why she is there, and that there is nothing wrong with her. She indicated that we put her there....we reminded her that she was in on the decision and had okayed it when at school with the social worker. We told her if it was true that she did not belong there that the doctor would have discussed that with us and would have her discharge home planned. We talked about wanting to have her home she immediately talked about too many rules punishment and we told her that we would be talking with the social worker tomorrow about formulating a contract to make it easier to live at home. She went on to say how her boyfriend & his mom were coming tomorrow to visit....we went over how that would not be permitted without us being there, that only parents were allowed visitation but we would bring her BF with us. She said that she wanted the BF's mom "Cheryl" to visit too. We stressed how we throught that the problems she was having with us needed working out and that we wanted her home and understood how she wanted to see her BF but it was not necessary to see the mom as well. She went on to say that perhaps it would be best to live elsewhere, that she wanted to divorce us as soon as she was 16 and could and perhaps she could go to a group home and be adopted. We told her that wasn't what we wanted but that it seemed to be her agenda no matter what...she asked us to bring her back to the unit that she didn't want to argue anymore and to please bring her back. I started to cry and told her that we didn't want the visit to go this way but the way that I saw it was that she no longer wanted to be with us and that perhaps taking a few days to herself would be best and to call us when she wanted to see us, that we loved her very much. I told her until we could work things out it might be best to have the next few visits to ourselves when she was ready. And we brought her back to the unit.

We have a meeting tomorrow with the doctor in the morning and the social worker for a family meeting. I am exahusted and so is my husband. It seems that the med hasn't done a thing to decrease her agitation/frustration. The entire time it seemed that she was angry, misinterpreting things, and totally frustrated.

We had drug testing done and everything was negative. As far as changes go we lost a great grandmother 2 years ago followed by a great uncle she was close to a few weeks after that. She was upset by the loss and her frist cutting episode took place shortly after that. Around 5 months ago we moved at her request to our summerhome.....she was happier here and had developed more friendships and begged to start high school here. We still have our primary home and have asked her if she would like to go back and she gets upset at the suggestion. Her big sis moved out around the same time to go pursue college and this has been an adjustment as well. Otherwise everything has been fine.

Jennfaery...I must say that what you wrote did concern me as well as my husband. I have to say that the thought of past molestation has crossed my mind especially with the hypersexual activity. The doctor says that that goes with bipolar as well on the manic side. Can I ask how old you are now?? Your advice is much appreciated.....the patients in the unit are definitley of concern since they seem to have more problems than my daughter. One boy who is her friend now is there for just trying to make bombs (according to my daughter). His convos do concern me and it seems that she is fitting in much more than the day she bedgged us to get her out of there (which was her first day)

I do not see any effects (positive) from the Abilify and it looks as if our daughter does not want to come home and would rather stay there. We think the break will do us all good and have left the ball in her court in order to work that out.

I do not like the way our visit went and am so upset that my daughter doesn't want to live with us anymore. Jennita if you would like to see why go to the parenting board where I intiially made a post. That may answer your questions more....the thread was closed since I brought things over here.

Thanks for the help.....I could really use the support....I just can't stop crying because it feels as if I have lost my daughter.

~ Goody

 
Old 03-05-2006, 03:46 PM   #6
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

You haven't lost you daughter, sweetie. I know this is a difficult time but you will get through it. She will grow up and realize that everything she did was to her own detriment. I will just take some time for her to realize it.

If she has been abused or raped, hopefully it will come out in therapy. If it was me, I would get her out of there and get her into intensive one on one therapy where she would go either every day or every other day. Unless, she tries to hurt herself again or someone else, then you should hospitalize her.

The kids that are usually in these kinds of places have many more problems then you could probably imagine and she will learn things she shouldn't. Most of the kids in there have done this a few times and know the ins and outs. Like I said I learned how to do things I shouldn't have. Like being taught how to distract the staff, so my friends could get into the medicine and go make out or have sex with the boys on the unit and vice versa. How to commit suicide if I really wanted to. Like which way to cut and what pills to take. Stuff like that. Like how I could harm myself and people wouldn't know.

I also met a few people that I should have never had contact with. Once I got out of the short term facility, I was able to contact them and find out where they lived so I could run away to their house and my parents would never know where I was.

The short term places I went to was nothing but a vacation or fun time because the staff didn't really care and niether did the docs. They just wanted their money and handed out medicine like it was free. So we got to run around and play games and socialize with very little attention or supervision from the staff. I went to 3 different short term facilities and all 3 were like that. Even some of the long term ones were like that too.

From what I am hearing about your daughter, it doesn't sound like shes bipolar. But I am not a doctor. Alot of kids act like this because they have issues they don't know how to deal with. They have all these new feelings that they are experiencing, they think their parents are out to get them, some have things that were very tramatizing and no one to really talk to about it. When a person has all these things going on and no where to get these feelings out, one coping mechanism is stuffing it inside. That's what it sounds liek to me. All this stuff has happened and she hasn't had a safe place to put it. So she keeps it inside and eventually it builds up and builds up and then you just can't take it anymore and you start to do things like cut on yourself or run away because you just don't know how to deal with it. It's like stuffing something into a jar, that jar is only so big. Eventually you can't put anything else in there and that's when things just start to come out on their own. It's just like it explodes out and you can't control it anymore.

I really don't know what you should do since I don't know everything about the situation. If she started cutting on herself 2 years ago this has been a long time coming. She needs intensive one on one counsiling which she will not get in this place. She doesn't need to be around kids who have way more severe problems then her. She could possibly learn how to fake it and get what she wants. That's what I did anyway.

I am 23 now. I am married to a wonderful man and I have 3 beautiful children. My stepson, is about to be 5, my oldest daughter will be 3, and our newest addition will be 5 weeks in a couple of days.

I now understand the absolute hell I know I put my family though. There are alot of things I wish I wouldn't have done but I wouldn't be the person I am today without it.

BTW, don't stop seeing her. I know it seems like she doesn't want you there but she really does. She wants you there now more then ever and is probably saying most of the things she is saying to hurt you. Not because she hates you but because she is feeling really hurt right now and wants you to understand how she is feeling. Don't stop seeing her. Go everyday if you can. Even when she tells you never to come again, go anyway. Please keep me inforned. I'll be praying for yall.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 04:12 PM   #7
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Jennfaery ~ Thanks for the response...my husband would like to go pick our daughter up now after reading it....yes the patients have more problems than my daughter, my only concern is going without having her med adjusted....I do feel that she needs help in regard to that since she has admitted wanting to take her life and has told the psychiatrist of a plan to get to an artery while cutting and also of jumping out of a moving vehicle. She already took a bottle of advil and I do not want her coming home without addressing that real concern.....I am torn. We do meet with her doctor tomorrow....right now there are only 6 patients including my daughter with more staff members, so I think that she is okay. I do agree that I do not wnat her to pick up other behaviors....the roomate she is with seems quiet and okay having lost a father and not dealing with that too well.

We have a family counseling tomorrow....I think I am going to push with the doctor to get her out of there and in family counselling come up with a contract to make life at home tolerable. We need to have a therapist appt set before they will even discharge her, so I will work on that tomorrow. What you say makes perfect sense, however, I need to know that she is safe from harming herself and also from runnning away.

Any other thoughts....will leaving her in a few more days really be bad?? She is on day # 4. Thanks again for being here and I am glad that things worked out so well for you...it does give me some hope. ~ Goody

PS ~ I am debating whether to call her....what do you think??? Or should we just take the break and wait & see what happens tomorrow after meeting with the doctor???

Last edited by goody2shuz; 03-05-2006 at 04:22 PM.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 05:08 PM   #8
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Go ahead and call her. She needs your support now more then ever!

I was reading your other post in the parenting forum. I think most of the things she is doing is pretty normal. She is feeling more popular now that she is at the new school, she has a boyfriend, she is able to be more social. All this adds up to her kind of "acting up" so to say.

Now that she is there, I would NOT just take her out. She could see it as mastering the manipulation she was trying to pull whenever you guys are there. Man, it's a tough decision to make. Since she is already there and should be getting out in a few days, I don't think there is much more damage that could be done since she's already been there for a bit.

I know this is going to sound crazy but cutting is a new fade going around for some reason. It's that whole tortured teen thing. She probably saw some other people doing it and thought it would be cool. But you have to be careful with it because sometimes it can develop into a problem if it isn't taken care of right away.

I still have urges sometimes when things are just too stressful to cut on myself. When some one does that, it causes pain and your brain releases endorphins and it kind of helps you cope with whatever is going on. It is NOT a healthy way to deal with stress. It leaves scars that will never go away.

It really makes me sad sometimes when my daughter grabs my arms and touches the scars and asks me "What happened, Mommy?" It just breaks my heart that she sees that and that one day I will have to tell her what I did to myself. I just tell her that mommy had a boo boo a long long time ago and that it's all better now. She doesn't ask anything else aboput it now but I'm sure in the future that answer won't satisfy her curiosity and I will have to tell her the truth.

Anyway, I think that she does need some therapy but she should not be placed in another in patient program again unless she try to harm herself or others. Maybe print some of this stuff out and have her read it? You could also write her a letter? Bring her some flowers? My mom did that for me one time and it really made me feel like she cared. Just e there for her and let her know you care. Don't leave her alone right now. She my tell you that and actually may feel like that sometimes but deep down her wants you there right by her side.

She is growing up now. It's a difficult time to be a teenager. You have to realize that she is going to make mistakes and lie and do things she shouldn't. She's testing her boudaries and the world around her. That's just being a teenager. You have to give her a little room to make her own mistakes and let her learn from it. She needs to have free time but she has to understand that there has to be a balance.

Also, do yall sit down together at dinner time? If not, I would make this a regular occurance. Kids who have the time together every night and are able to talk with their parents a little about their day tend to be more well balanced. If you find it tough to talk about things, play a game or something. Like high and lows. What was your igh point of the day and low point. There are alot of other things you can do to make dinner time.

I'll get back with you later. Kids are drving hubby nuts. LOL Anyway, go ahead and give her a call.

 
Old 03-05-2006, 06:38 PM   #9
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Jennfaery ~ Thanks again for the shoulder. I agree that we need to follow this out. When we met with the doctor tomorrow morning we should have a better idea of how much longer she will be staying. The thing that bothers me is that I do see how she is falling into bonding with the other patients...the first day she wanted out of there because they were all crazy and now she calls them her friends. Even my other daughter commented to me on how happy she sounds there with all of her new friends. So this does concern me quite a bit. I will make sure I get rid of any phone numbers she brings home with her......a patient that was discharged called the patient phone to talk to everyone and I could see my daughter doing that as well and will have to monitor her phone calls upon her return home.

The cutting I saw as a fad....my daughter told me the first time she did it that she did it because others did and it was no big thing. I decided to keep an eye on things and since she started up again and has told the psychiatrist that she is looking for an artery I am quite concerned about that.

Funny how you mentioned the scars....I talked to my daughter about that being something she may regret when she is a mother in the future having to explain the scars to her own daughter.

As I have had time to think about it, I see how my daughter's words were meant to hurt me in a way that she feels hurt. I am glad that I told her that I was able to cry rather than hurt myself and tell her with words how her words hurt me and hoped that she would be able to see that as a healthy way of doing things. She said that she does cry when she cuts and I told her that it would be good to get her to the point of crying and explaining what it was inside her that hurt her so much.

Yes we do sit down to dinner together and tonite with her empty spot there we prayed grace and felt so empty without her there. As my husband & I said grace he went on to add..."And please take care of our Erin while she is not here with us. Take her into the palm of Your hand and prtect her from any harm and bring her home to us soon." I was so comforted by his words and I called her shortly afterwards to tell her I loved her and didn't like the way our visit had gone and apologized telling her that we would see her tomorrow. She cut the convo short by saying that others were waiting for the phone.

I am hoping that tomorrow will be a better day.

Thanks again.....Goody

 
Old 03-06-2006, 03:57 AM   #10
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Ruth6:11 HB UserRuth6:11 HB User
Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

I'm here Goodyjust like always my friend.
Just enough time for a hug - and a reminder that IF Erin is bipolar - - her behavior IS a symptom, not something done to hurt you. Hard I know when she is saying such hurtful things. Like Jenn said, DO continue to see her as often as possible. If she was in the hospital with appendicitis wouldn't you be there? Of course!
And a note that from what I understand, cutting is ALWAYS serious. I'd really try to get to the bottom of the lack of coping skills or whatever is the cause of that.
There is a self-injury board here & although I know that you probably feel like you've been at too many new boards it may help to browse thru there for some insight...
Until I get a moment to sit down & type more, you are in my prayers and Erin DOES know you love her - but may not be able to "snap out of it"...
Hugs,
Ruth

 
Old 03-06-2006, 11:20 AM   #11
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

I think the advice here is great you've been getting. Just an observation on my part, it seems she is very co-dependant on having friends, whether at school or anywhere. I noticed she made alot of friends quickly at the new school, and now at the hospital she's at. I think having them helps her self-esteem. I didn't get the chance to read through all the posts on the parenting board, but I did see one where you mentioned she cut because of an arguement with her friends at school, indicating how important she feels they are to her.

Problem with depending on others for your own self worth is that sometimes you will do things that aren't healthy for you just to fit in or be accepted..so I still think the very swift accumulation of a new boyfriend and friends at her new school meant she most likely did something to fit in very quickly. Now, I've also read that most good girls/A students that take a sudden swan dive into bad girl/low grades happens alot when they are introduced to drugs. I know you had a drug screen done, but alot of drugs can clear the body before such tests.

Pot has a very short half-life, for example, can be gone in just a couple of hours. I just get the feeling it all started with her new boyfriend and new friends at school, of which could possibly be a group who indulges into drugs. Drugs such as pot will make even the brightest person alot duller, it does effect motivation, makes people lazy in general and effects cognitive learning.

I'm just saying I'm very suspicious drugs are involved, but mainly because of the boyfriend and group of friends as a way of fitting in and being accepted. Most clics I remember when I went to school that had the "druggies" were very tight, very close, sort of a club. Really can make a person feel like they are part of something special, or like a family so much that they don't see how much more important it is to not harm themselves for the sake of having "friends".

And unfortunately, parents are the biggest road block, they stand in the way of this and probably this is why she wants to get away from your rules because they don't let her be free to do what and with who she wants.

But she doesn't realize the road she's been on will definately lead to mental illness, which is no real freedom at all but endless dependancy on doctors, drugs or even sometimes being forced into hospitalization that may not always be as pleasant as the one she's in right now.

Was she ever the type to make friends easily before? Did she not fit in or have alot of friends in childhood? Was she overweight?

I'm just thinking there has to be a reason why all her self-worth and happiness seems to depend on how many friends or if she is sexually attractive to boys. I think she feels like she isn't worth much without the approval of others. Look how she feels about the people with her now, for example, they have something in common(mental diagnosis) and they no doubt accept her into their group, which seems to again make her very happy.

She just doesn't seem to have much self worth, I mean, she hurts herself in reaction to how others treat her, and only when she is "fitting in "and having friends is she truly happy, like now with her new-found friends at the hospital who have accepted her into the group, or the clic.

Poor girl doesn't realize that when you have a loving family, they'll ultimately be the ones to catch you when you fall the hardest; sometimes friends dissapper when the things get tough in life, while family usually will stay to help you fight the battle intil the end. Investing in friends IMHO is a bad investment compared to family.

That is, if one is fortunate to have a good family, good parents... and it sounds like your daughter does.....maybe someday she'll get it, lets' hope.

 
Old 03-07-2006, 04:48 AM   #12
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

OOOPS...double post....

Last edited by goody2shuz; 03-07-2006 at 04:53 AM.

 
Old 03-07-2006, 04:52 AM   #13
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Hello, All Jennita you are soooo right in my getting great advice here as well as support......I cannot thank you guys enough for holding me up during this time that I find it so hard to stand on my own two feet. I feel as if I am somewhat able to do so but the reality is that I can stumble and fall so easily still. And knowing I am able to come here makes it easy to make sure that doesn't happen!!! Thank God!!!

As far as your concerns, I do not dismiss them totally and know that drug/alcohol use shouldn't be ruled out, however, my instincts are that it is not what is causing my daughter's symptoms right now. I DO agree that her self worth does need working on which I am praying will be addressed in therapy.

Regarding some questions you brought up.....my daughter was always extremely social since she was a little girl...sometimes even too much for her own good!!! Alot of the time she did well in school but when going to those teacher conferences it was a repetition of hearing how great she does academically but there was a problem keeping Erin from talking/interacting with others. We just saw that as part of her personality and something we just had to accept, always keeping an eye on it making sure it didn't interfere with her grades and other aspects of her life. There were times we thought she was borderline ADHD, however, she never tested positive for that. (Funny when I have researched Bipolar it is said that it fits in with ADHD) Erin made friends easily, however, when she got to the Junior High level, her friendships were much more tight knit and confined to one or two close friends. As far as weight, she was always underweight and still is.

I do agree that she holds friendships as being extremely important.....they are her everything now but I do remember that being a part of my teenage years as well. Who wanted to be with their parents when there were friends around??? And yes, she invests alot into that, way too much IMHO. I believe she loves the new school she is in because there are only 100 students in her grade level and she knows every one of them and loves the fact that she does. At this point in time she has 10 friends that she is extremely close to both male & female. And then there's the BF, a grade ahead of her, who doesn't really get along with her friends. I have to say that my daughter balances that quite well realizing that dropping her friends for a BF is not in her best interest. And the BF on her plate right now could be a problem emotionally to balance overall and I am praying that he will fizzle out....there is talk that he may be moving away soon which would surely be a godsend!!! Eliminating him, as much as I would like to, would only upset the applecart...our plan is to make him our ally in keeping Erin healthy. He will be closely monitored at the same time.

Anyway....yesterday I finally saw the rainbow coming through the clouds. WE met with the psychiatrist who told us that she believes Erin has a mild case of Bipolar II the least severe form and one in which she will most likely outgrow. She told us that this comes about when the hormonal surges place such an extreme stress on the body that it offsets the balance of seratonin and dopamine levels in the body causing cycling of moods in such a way that it interferes with thought processes and overall well being. She went on to say that by using a mood stabilizer such as Abilify and a touch of an antidepresssant like Celexa, it brings things back into balance until the hormone levels level off a little more. She said she expects Erin to need the assistance of these meds for anywhere from 6-8 months at which time she hopes to wean her off. She told us that the meds were considered to be extrememly safe in her opinion compared to most others and that Erin, in conjunction with thereapy, would get through this. I have to say that my husband & I were quite relieved after meeting with the doctor. She told us her plan was to double up on the Abilify to 5mg and add in the Celexa 5mg. She said she expected to have Erin discharged home within a few days and to have a 6 hour home pass into effect for today.

We saw Erin a few minutes afterwards....she stood back and seemed apprehensive about seeing us there. I gave her a letter I had written reminding her of how much she was loved and how we wanted her to be back home with us again. I also reminded her of a time a few months back when she snuggled with me at church and how I would like to see us get back to being able to do so again. I acknowledged the hurt & pain that she was in and told her that I was hoping and praying that it would be relieved soon so that she could be happy again and that we would always be there for her no matter what.

Later on, we arrived early to see Erin before the social worker. I wanted her to hear about the new med that would be given from me and not anyone else. I told her about it and I could see her concerns about what she had heard from the other patients about them drugging you up written all over her face. I shared with her how I had spoken to her a few weeks ago about her possibly needing help through the teenage years, that sometimes there were physical or chemical problems that made it more difficult to get through these years and that we should check it out and see if there was a way to help her out. That is when I suggested we go to her Peidatrician for a complete physical to have things checked out. And that now, from the doctor's evaluation of her, she did have a chemical imbalance that required some meds to balance things out and that it would be needed only temporarily to help her through. I reminded her how since she was in my uterus (which my daughter indicated was TMI ) that I made sure that she was protected from having any unnecessary meds or anything that would potentially bring her harm to her introduced into my body. And how I still felt that way.....and how now I saw the meds she was on as a way to perhaps not only save her life but also assist her through a very rough time that her body couldn't do on it's own. She seemed to understand more and we went on to play a game of quarters which brought the first smile to my daughter's face that I hadn't seen in such a long time!! Did I ever tell you what a beautiful smile it is...it's one of those smles that lights up the room and when she smiles her eyes radiate her soul to everybody around her. My how I have missed being witness to that!!!

Anyway, we all went on to meet with the social worker and discussed our grounds pass that went terrible the previous day. We all agreed that it sucked and we discusssed how it turned out that way....how each of us was so looking forward to it and how quickly things went downhill. Erin admitted to getting agitated with most things we said, of misinterpreting some things and how she might have changed things particualry her behavior to make the outcome a little bit better. And we did the same. We discussed the home pass and the social worker pointed out how it was to be spent with parents only because the way he saw it she had no probelms to work on with the friends, that it was a form of therapy in which she could work on relating to us, her parents. And we started initiating a home contract and will finish that up today before the home pass. By the end of the session we were all laughing and relieved....much was accomplished and getting Erin home seemed more on the horizon whereas the previous day it didn't. We know that there is much to be done in terms of the recovery to our family unit but I do believe that it is possible now that we all have a clearer understanding of the problem.

So today we are looking forward to our time with our daughter.....we plan on taking her home to shave her legs (that is her first request ). We will then bake a cake that is part of one of her assignments for her culinary arts classs at school and she can bring it back with her to the unit. We will then go out for dinner together, Erin's choice, and ad lib it from there. Just being with her is something we are so looking forward to.

I must admit that I am a little bit nervous....I think we all are because we have that fear that things will revert back to how they were before Erin was hospitalized, of her running away and doing everything in her power to get a way....however, I am hoping that with this fresh start she will truly return home to us in her heart and realize that we do love her and have her best interests always on our minds as her parents who love her so much.

I will keep you posted....please say a few prayers for us that all continues to go well.....I really could use them. And thanks again for standing by me through this terrible time that I hope someday to look back upon as a distant memory!!!

~ Goody

Last edited by goody2shuz; 03-07-2006 at 06:16 AM.

 
Old 03-07-2006, 07:52 AM   #14
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

GoodyI am totally confused!
I have never ever never heard of ANYone "outgrowing" Bipolar Disorder. I am unable to find such a statement in any of the books I have or on the internet. I would be interested in finding out what studies they are referring to. If she were to "outgrow" it, my first assumption would be that it wasn't Bipolar Disorder to begin with.
Any type of anti-depressent OTHER than an SSRI would be better in my book but I'd add that better that she is on a mood stabilizer also if that's the only anti-depressant they will consider.

I'm honestly a little uncomfortable about the outgrowing statements, and certainly am no doctor - I sure don't want to undermine any treatment!

But do keep searching for every bit of unconditional mom love that you have. I've told many people over the years that anyone who loves someone with Bipolar Disorder needs to have Skin of Teflon.
It's true... I remember when I was hooked on the Dune Trilogy (It's probably a Quintolgy by now) there was a mantra they would say about fear. A bipolars moods are like fear. You have to let it flow over and through you.

The hugs you get to keep...
Ruth

 
Old 03-07-2006, 08:22 AM   #15
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Re: Daughter May be Bipolar

Hi, Ruth I was along the same thinking as you regarding the Bipolar however, when I brought that question up with the psychiatrist she said in kids like Erin it does run it's course that way. Again she said, that time would tell but that is what she saw in terms of her experience and treatment. Anyway, my dear cybertwin...I did express her adding the Celexa and my concern of it's triggering Bipolar III....the doctor said that yes that is certainly true when the med is introduced prior to stabilization of any manic tendencies. I am sure worried now that my cybertwin is concerned and do want you to interject so we can act as a team on all of this.

Funny how Erin just called me and told me the meds were making her extremely sleepy and I reassurred her that that was perfectly normal, that there was a period of adjustment and that the doctor would make sure that they they were adjusted better before she went home. And.....Ruth except for the grogginess, my Erin is back!!! She told me that she had something that was worrying her , that while speaking to another friend yesterday on the phone that she heard that her BF was mad at her and was interested in another girl. My heart sank because she has enough stress but it took a leap because she was able to tell me. For so long I had to pull things out of Erin and try every magical trick in the book to find out what it was that she was holding so depp inside. Like another poster said....it's like a jar that can hold nothing else.....Erin is now able to keep that jar from filling up too much and I am thrilled!! Well, the words of reassurance came so naturally and I told her that I would be up soon and we would talk more about it and that everything would be okay and to worry about herself and not what was hapening on the outside...that most likely she was hearing a rumor and even if it were true Mommy would help her through it. She thanked me and told me I made her feel better.

Okay, Ruth....help me do the research...I will of course express my concerns with the doctor once again and get some reassurrance for us both. With you & I as a team....Erin is going to be okay!! I know He put you there for me to help me through this and that He is watching over my baby!!

(((HUGS))) ~ Goody

UPDATE: I called Erin's nurse who explained to me that my concerns about the Celexa were unwarranted, that often it was perscribed by primary care physicians who didn't monitor it closely and just gave higher doses. She explained that it wouldn't throw anyone into a Bipolar disorder but would trigger a manic episode if introduced prior to a mood stabilizer. And she did say that there ARE forms of mild Bipolar I that ARE temporary. The nurse said she has a name of a book that she has for our family that will help out significantly. zi will update you more later my dear worried cybertwin. Any other info you find would be much appreciated since I am new to all of this and fully trust YOU!!

Last edited by goody2shuz; 03-07-2006 at 08:49 AM.

 
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