New here, exhausted, and at the end of my tether

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Wiynter, Apr 26, 2011.

  1. Wiynter

    Wiynter New Member

    Well, to make a really long story sort of short, a year ago today difficult child was released from her first psychiatric hospital stay for brandishing a knife at herself and her stepdad, and threatening to kill herself because the dogs interrupted her youtube viewing. Things seem to have only gotten worse. She may not be swinging knives, but we are in a fairly constant state of crisis. She's had 7 psychiatric hospital stays since last april, 8 if the partial hospitalization is included. In January, she was charged with assaulting me during a rage in which she tried to get past me to get into my room after easy child, and it ended in easy child and I barricaded in my room waiting for the police. Her court date was earlier this month, and the judge handed her a 2nd chance in a continuance, but she had to keep her nose clean, actually try in therapy, and have absolutely no police calls. Her guy with the county made it crystal clear that she needed to be careful, to take this seriously, that she could end up in a lot of situations she doesn't want to be, but apparently difficult child just doesn't care, there is a good chunk of her behavior that she can control so she doesn't end up in a rage, but she chooses not to, and openly admits to it, and despite being told what the consequences of continuing things are, she just won't stop.

    I'm at a loss. She was tested by a neurospych in July of last yr, and of all the diagnosis he put forth, psychiatrist settled on bipolar with psychotic features, ODD, and he is still trying to figure out if she is on the AS, as she fits a lot of the criteria, and if she is truly ADHD or if its a manifestation of the suspected Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). We've faithfully taken her to therapy, we're working to get her an IEP, we switched from our private therapy provider to the county hoping to get her more services, and we are switching to the county psychiatrist in may as well. We have done everything we can think of to help her, but it stays the same, or shades of the same thing. She is truly terrifying. husband works a lot of hours, and it leaves easy child and I with difficult child a lot more than I'd like. She is still cruel, defiant, and will rage with him, but is less likely to than she is with easy child and I.

    easy child doesn't look forward to weekends anymore, or holidays. I don't either. easy child told me about a neck lump yesterday, said she didn't know how long she'd had it but it had been more than 3 weeks, and when we were at the doctor's today, she told the doctor she'd had it for a yr. When asked why she hadn't told me before, she said because we were so stressed dealing with difficult child that she didn't want to ask for anything, and with difficult child's jealousy towards her, she's uncomfortable doing anything to take care of herself, or ask for something for fear that difficult child will come after her.

    I have nightmares about difficult child. My anxiety medication isn't cutting it anymore. What do you do when you feel you've done what you can, but are still dangling off the edge? Am I missing something? We've tried different methods, including the explosive child. I feel stuck. We can't afford a Residential Treatment Center (RTC), insurance won't cover anything other than emergency psychiatric hospital stays. But I don't feel that easy child is safe with difficult child in the house. I don't feel safe with difficult child in the house. Sorry this is so long!
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi, and welcome to the board.

    Do you think a long term facility may be a good option for her? In an Residential Treatment Center (RTC) they can treat the illness, give therapy and school, and the child does not live at home until she becomes stable. Have you considered this?
  3. Wiynter

    Wiynter New Member

    We've definitely considered it, and its where she would be right now if we could afford it or our insurance covered it. We are waiting/case building with the county, if she still hasn't improved after they've been involved for 6 months (3 left to go) they will look into funding options for us.

    Thank you for the welcome!
  4. Jena

    Jena New Member

    hi and welcome...........

    for you take a whole lotta breaks, as often as you can......... seriously your going to need it moving forward, you have your hands full. do you have a safety plan in place for you and easy child when difficult child is home with you guys?? my easy child just recently moved out of our crazy home, it gets to them it really does than they start acting out. if i had it to do all over again i'd get easy child into therapy younger even if she didnt' want to go. maybe you should or could offer that to easy child, an outlet safe place to vent so she doesnt' boil over also in time.

    you state in your signature your difficult child's medication resisitant?? i often think mine is too lol, yet what medications have you tried? all that rage has to be calmed for you to survive in that house. i know what you mean about rtcs' their a fortune. we wanted to send my easy child to one 2 years ago when she began flying off the handle yet we couldn't afford it and the county run facilities well she'd be better off on the street.

    anyway so what medications have you tried? have you tried the classic bipolar medications, lithium depakote, the mood stabilizers???

    sorry things are so rough. doesnt sound like your missing anything but peace at this point

    hang in there
  5. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hi Wiynter,

    Adding another welcome. You've found a great group of warrior parents!

    Because of the funding issues, you unfortunately have to play the waiting game with local health dept for three more months - you are half way there....

    At the first sign of violence or raging, call 911 or transport her to the ER. At least you can get one peaceful night of sleep.

    I feel really bad for your easy child. She sounds as if she is suffering so.

    One day at a time is how most of us live.

  6. Wow, your post sounds scary familiar! I feel that husband, easy child 3 and I are prisoners in our own home alot of the time. Our difficult child is very rageful, angry, mean mostly towards me but lately with husband and therapist as well. I am seriously ready for my difficult child to go to a Residential Treatment Center (RTC), husband is not completly there yet.

    Gentle hugs, but no real advice, just understanding!
  7. Wiynter

    Wiynter New Member

    Thanks for the warm welcome, nice to have a soft spot to land in all this. I'm lucky to have my mother in law right down the street, if she is home when difficult child starts up, easy child goes and hangs with grandma. When that's not an option, easy child is to get to the nearest safe place (my room, her own room) and lock the door. I didn't mention this in my initial post, but we've had 18 police visits since last april. We often get the same ones, and difficult child has been embarrassed because a few of the officers have pulled up along side her on walks and asked how she was doing. Our county guy made it clear to difficult child that the next call meant her being carted off to a detention home. Wish I knew if that were true, though I suppose he'd know for sure as he has access to all the police reports.

    I think at this time difficult child has been on all the atypicals that I know of. Her current medication list is zyprexa, topamax, depakote, tenex, cogenten, and concerta. This mix worked for her from her feb psychiatric hospital stay up until the end of march, in which she hit a spiral, had a 4 day psychiatric hospital stay, and is continuing down. She's been tried on risperdal, which she is allergic to, abilify, geodon, and seroquel. psychiatrist also did several trials with anti anxiety medications like xanax and klonopin. Basically, if a mix is found that seems to do something for her (we had 2 really peaceful weeks after she started the depakote), it eventually just doesn't. The dose can be raised, and it still won't be effective. Geodon and Zyprexa have been the most effective in controlling some of the symptoms.

    easy child is really having it rough. I'm working on getting my license so we no longer have to rely on husband to get places, once I'm mobile, easy child will be seeing the fam therapist we had prior to the move to the county. She really liked the therapist. I've been lurking and reading, and I am thinking about turning to a domestic violence support in the community, easy child and I could use it.

    Thanks again for the welcome!
  8. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    2 years ago... This was Onyxx, though she had a little more control, and husband is the kids' dad while I am stepmom. But so close. So close.

    Something I have to ask... If she is better around husband... Is he on the same page as you? (Legally, this doesn't matter as much as practically...) What about the girls' bio? Which leads me to ask... Did this behavior start somewhat suddenly?

    Fair enough - we had some great success for a week or so on several different medications, then Onyxx decided to cheek them. Clearly, they then did not work. Any chance of this? And "eventually just doesn't" - how long does it take? Curious.

    Lots of hugs, by the way. I know what it's like to sleep with locked doors.
  9. Wiynter

    Wiynter New Member

    husband and I are on the same page, we try to present a united front. He works crazy hours though, and as much as he backs my decisions, its generally me who has to deal with the discipline aspect. Bio dad is in the ether somewhere. No contact for 5+ years, and prior to that, it was sporadic at best.

    Nope, difficult child has been difficult child since she was about 2, almost 3. She was tested at 7, doctor wouldn't diagnosis her with anything, but did say she was years younger emotionally than her age, but was a good mimic. She was in some special programs with her school, we were working our way through the red tape to get a psychiatrist/any kind of real help for about 1.5 years before we immigrated to the states. Within a month of being here she was tested and diagnosis'd as ADHD. difficult child's gr 6 year actually went pretty well. She was still extremely rigid and controlling, but we could go as much as 3 months without any kind of blow up, and then her monthly started, and things took a nose dive from there. She's on seasonique in a bid to avoid the hormonal fluctuation.

    I administer the medications, but I suppose there is always that chance of her cheeking, but have never found any evidence. Her psychiatrist has suspected several times as well. Geodon got us through last summer, and she's been on the zyprexa the longest, since her nov psychiatric hospital stay, though her dose has gone from 10mg-25mg over those months. It seems to be a gradual thing, where her dose needs to be raised, the symptoms creep back in, and then eventually even the topped out dose won't work. It happened very quick for the seroquel, and a couple months for the geodon. Almost 6 months for the zyprexa thus far.

    Does it ever get any easier to deal with or understand?
  10. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Hi and welcome. Springtime often brings out a new degree of nastiness or mania in bipolars. One of those fun things. She's 14, so toss in puberty and hormonal fluxes, and it's like playing with a chem set while blindfolded.
    Are there any respite homes in your area that don't have kids or animals of their own (since they would be in danger from her)? DV counseling sounds like it would very useful in your situation.