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  • Bipolar parents raising bipolar kids...anyone have more advice

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    Old 12-06-2008, 06:32 PM   #1
    mommy2fourbratz
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    Angry Bipolar parents raising bipolar kids...anyone have more advice

    Ok here is my story....
    I am a single mom who works and goes to school. I have 4 kids who are 12-11-7-7 and have all been diagnosed with ADHD. My 11 yr old daughter is bipolar and so is one of the twins so I think their ADHD diagnosis was incorrect. My 7yr old is the worst out of the 4. He wakes up at the crack of dawn and proceeds to destroy everything he can. He empties cabinets, breaks dvds (now hidden), tears up the blinds, breaks my jewelry (now under lock and key after he broke my $600 diamond necklace), puts stuff in the drains, cuts up and rips up papers, throws clothes all over the house, wipes pb or other stuff like icing all over the tv and his bed, hides food in his room everywhere, dumps pop or juice out all over, and just generally acts like a cyclone. He has stolen from me and from the school on at least 4 occasions. I get up fairly early as they go to school but on the weekends I am so tired from the lack of sleep during the week that I sleep till 9 or so. It takes me about 8-12 hrs to clean the messes he has made and has destroyed our relationship because I am so frustrated that I try to get away from him to avoid exploding. My other kids suffer because I am yelling and crying and generally miserable which affects my relationship with them.
    Don't mistake me, I tell all of my kids I love them every day numerous times, I try to spend all my free time with them, I buy them stuff when I am able (not very often and they break it anyway), and I am a generally hands on mom. They are not neglected, abused, or any other thing that would cause this behavior....so I am assuming it must be the disease even though I was not this way when I was his age. He was on Depakote for a while but I hated the way it made him so I took him off of it figuring it was better that I be stressed out than for him to feel that way. Now after about 18mths of only meds for ADHD I have put him on Respiradol to help with the mood swings and so far he is doing great!! The problem is that he is still doing all of the other things and with my disorder it is very hard for me to spend every day of my life so stressed out. I was good for a while and was really happy, but since he started this behavior again in June I have contimplated suicide more times than I can count. I know I am ill and that is why I tend to tell myself it is not life, it is the disease that makes me feel that way but I am beginning to wonder if I will ever have a normal life.
    My family has pretty much disowned us because of how my kids are, my friends don't want my kids in their houses because of the fact that they are so hyper and my son is so destructive. So here I sit, locked away with these issues and dealing with them totally alone. I can't have anyone in my life because no one can deal with them and I don't have the time to deal with my kids and be in a relationship.
    Also let me paint it a little clearer for you....in addition to the above issues, my kids literally argue and fight 95% of the time they are together (well my 3 boys anyway). My daughter (11yr old) has moved in with her dad because of her brothers behavior. My oldest son will not go because he is afraid of what would happen if he weren't here to help. I feel so bad because he should not be worried about this stuff. He stays home all weekend because of my other 2 and the stuff they do. He stays so he can help clean it up and no matter how many times I tell him to go play he won't. Now his grades are suffering and so are the twins. All of my kids were straight A students till this year (the twins don't get A's but were top of the class), now they have horrible behavior issues in school and at home. Outside of my bipolar twin the only issues the other 2 have are general ADHD issues....hyperactivity, forgetfulness, impulsivity, etc....but he suffers from so many issues that he missed a lot of school because he was having meltdowns and I knew they would send him home.
    They are all very intelligent (maybe too intelligent sometimes) and this poses problems cause they think of things to destroy that I can never predict.
    I can't lock everything cause the landlord won't let me put holes in the cabinets and I don't have money for other methods.
    So far they broke the locks on my car, the livign room window, my windshield, my diamond necklace, my printer, my digital camera, my tv, my dvd player, my sofa (cut it to shreds), stabbed my table and windowsills with a screwdriver, my cell phone (2 since the summer), the toilet, kitchen and bathroom sinks, tub, central air, entertainment center, xmas tree, my bed, their beds (son stabbed his with scissors until I had to throw it out, plus he hid chicken bones in it...gross), their walls are all wrote on, they took my lipstick that is longwear and rybbed it all over their carpet, drew with markers and white out on the carpet, ripped the wood all over their dresser so that now I have to find a free one somewhere cause it is not safe anymore, I can't list all of it and this is just since summer this year.....

    Is there anyone out there who has even some of these issues who has any tips for how to stop his behavior or maybe some advice on programs or anything.
    The only problem is all the programs here cost money and I am so broke that I literally have to scrounge for gas money every week.....so any freebie programs for kids would be great too...or if anyone just wants to vent or chat.....
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    They say that which does not kill us only serves to make us stronger.....well I have news for you, if that was true I would be like Hercules by now from the stresses of my life.....

     
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    Old 12-07-2008, 08:37 AM   #2
    TearsANDRage
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    Re: Bipolar parents raising bipolar kids...anyone have more advice

    I truly feel for your situation, I do not have bipolar myself but my nine year old daughter does. I can tell you from my experience, that treatment is essential for both you and your child. Your bouts of bipolar will feed off of one another and it will be difficult if you are both cycling at the same time. My daughter is on Rispiradone as well, and it has worked well for her...she also has major anxiety as well for which she is being treated with Paxil...again, I have seen a HUGE change in her. For me, it is finding a balance between the bahaviours that are a result of her illness, and the behaviour that is a result of her age, being a child. She knows that she is bipolar and at times, tries to use it as an excuse for bad behaviour. I have to make sure that her boundaries are very clear otherwise she is a walking timebomb. For me, it has taken time to be able to assertain which behaviour is cases from her illness....a lot of monitoring and journal keeping. Being bipolar yourself, I hope that you keep a journal of your moods in order to track your cycles and then track your child's as well, you will find that there is clear patterns after time. I also had to modify my daughters diet, I found that certain foods contribute to her illness, chocolate being a big one! Keep in touch with your medical professionals, stay on your medication even if you are feeling well, and be as proactive as you can. I wish you the very best of luck!!

     
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