Tell me this isn't depression... with a little hypomania thrown in for good measure.

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by gcvmom, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    husband worked from home today. I think he got up to log into work around 9:30 this morning. I slept in until 10am and when I went downstairs he was scurrying around the yard letting the chickens out and then came in seeming very amped up, almost to the point of being irritable. He's been a little over-the-top pushy about sex lately and that's usually a sign he's getting hypomanic.

    So he works until about noon and comes downstairs asking if I'll go out to lunch with him today. He wants to go to an Indian buffet in the next town and starts rambling on about how that's what we ALWAYS do when he works from home (and I'm thinking what on EARTH is he talking about? We haven't been out for Indian food in over a year...) and can I call the restaurant to make sure they're open today and how late is the buffet served and.... (breathe, dude, breathe).

    We head out by 12:30pm and get to the place by about 12:50. He's very distracted and when he DOES follow my conversation he manages to blurt out something that's got nothing to do with what I'm talking about but seems to be an attempt to twist it into a complaint about our sex life (WTH?). I snapped at him and put him in his place. He tried back pedaling with his comments but I was already ticked off by then.

    We leave and make two stops on the way home and all the while I'm driving (he did this on the way out) he's trying to "fondle" me, which he knows bugs the living crud out of me, but then he gets mad because I'm "rejecting" him. I finally just said to STOP that and he just reclined back in his seat with his sunglasses on and acted as if he were going to sleep.

    We get home by about 2:30pm, he goes back upstairs to work some more, and hollers down to the kids that at 4:00pm he's taking them all down to the park for some exercise and to get easy child some soccer practice in since she has All Star games in about a week. 4pm hits and he comes down, and none of the kids wants to go, but he herds them all out the door. They come back about 40 min later, he goes back upstairs to work and the kids start telling me how dad is freaking out and going ballistic on them over stuff they don't really understand the reason for.

    He works until about 5:30pm then comes back down to pack up his laptop, then goes back upstairs to lay down, play spider solitaire on his personal laptop and watch TV the rest of the night! So after a GRUELING day of maybe 4.5 hours of actual WORK, he's SO tired he has to decompress away from everyone else.

    I don't know how many more days until his next psychiatrist appointment, but it can't come soon enough. I think I'm going to send this update to the doctor as a not-so-subtle reminder that the whole bipolar issue needs to be addressed head-on because this is just getting ridiculous.
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    When was his last eeg? Probably need to make sure that is all good too??? I have no experience with that but it sure sounds off. great idea to send the post.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    While you're at it... flag the doctor to look for early signs of dementia (not what you want to hear, I know), because that can bring on the distractedness, the getting stuck, the improper behavior, etc.
  5. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Oh yeah. Reading your post gave me flash backs!
  6. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    It HAS to be bipolar. Because he was like this times a HUNDRED before he started medications, so unless he had the cavernoma/seizure issues when I met him 23 years ago (and he didn't start those symptoms until we'd been married 15 years) and unless he was starting dementia at age 24 when I met him, then it's definitely bipolar. :rofl:

    psychiatrist agreed with me back in November that we need to get husband off Paxil and on something else... I'm guessing he'll try Seroquel XR since it works so well for difficult child 2, but we didn't go there in that conversation. I just am amazed the psychiatrist needed ME to tell him what to say to husband because he felt husband was resistant to going off Paxil. I said to tell him, "Look, if Paxil were doing the job it's supposed to do, then you wouldn't be having these symptoms. THEREFORE you need to try something else." It's really very simple logic, and husband responds to that well especially if you keep it unemotional and stick to the facts.

    And I'm getting ready to just drop a reality check in husband's lap if things continue...
  7. buddy

    buddy New Member

    He had a cavernoma??? Is that what the surgery/seizure part of your signature is?? That is what Q had. (different words used in different places....)

    I just asked because it said seizures/craniotomy on your signature line. I didn't know his history before that, lol.
  8. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Yes he did have one... they also called it "cavernous hemangioma," right temp. lobe, about the size of a grape. They got most of it but there's still a rice-grain-sized bit left. He gets an annual MRI to watch for changes and sees his neuro quarterly. He has autonomic seizures (simple-partial but with sensory-only symptoms that he experiences) which you really wouldn't know are happening unless he says something, though he typically has to stop what he's doing because it's a bit overwhelming for him.

    He's buzzing around the house this morning doing stuff after laying around watching TV all day yesterday, and trying to engage people in a kind of intrusive way which is annoying to all of us. After he did something to difficult child 1 and made him angry, I commented "Boy, you're on a roll this morning!" To which he replied, "Yeah, I'm doing my best to pi$$ off everyone I talk to." At least he gets that people are unhappy with his behavior. But I doubt that will translate into him doing anything differently. He'll just take it all personally and go hide the rest of the day. He went to the store to get some groceries... let's see if my prediction holds true!
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It


    It sounds like he needs a medication tweak. I am glad you have a good relationship with his doctors. It gets frustrating when they won't listen to a spouse. It sounds like you should call tomorrow or the next day the doctor is in so that husband can get things adjusted asap.

    Please have a talk about car groping. I am sure you have been there done that, but it is a very dangerous thing even when the driver is aware it is going to happen. just because HIS kids are not on that highway with him doesn't mean someone else's kids aren't, or someone else's mommy, daddy, friend, hero. THAT is what the stakes are when he starts. I know YOU can see the dangers, but it sounds like he just thinks you are being a "meanie" and no one else would have ANY problem with it at any time.
  10. buddy

    buddy New Member

    That is what Q had. There is a good website. Did you know they now have identified several genetic forms of this and it can be inherited? If you have any information to share ever, please do... I would love that. At first they thought the genetic markers were only in the Hispanic population but now there are more kinds. the surgery report said Q's was the size of a beefsteak tomato. It leaked before they found it (strokes) and then was removed. Most of Q's seizures are temporal lobe and simple too. His start on the right and go to the left. I think if an adult can describe it like that, how frustrating must it be for Q who too has learned just to push thru them so often and most people wouldn't know (they were documented to be happening many many times all day and all night).

    I find myself having to remind people all of the time that this injury causes in Q (among other things that are known from a rt. temporal lobe injury): persistent talking, inability to recognize facial expressions, short term memory issues and since there are limbic system structures there (and he has hippocampal damage in the rt. temporal lobe) it affects his emotional control...up and down....Temporal lobe injury can cause childish behavior and emotional disregulation. I am so glad to be at the therapy center that works with brain injury now so they can help me explain this better to school and even psychiatrists. I can imagine that like for Q who we think has Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) independent of this, that it could only have added to and made much more complicated your husband's mental health issues. Though, I suppose he may have had that CA for a LOOONGGG time..and could have been the reason for those problems all along. ???? No way to know when it started to grow unless he ever had an MRI that didn't show one before it developed. Many people never have surgery as they probably told you. many have to live with them especially if they are in a really hard place to get out. They often wait until life threatening symptoms show up.

    do you belong to the anioma alliance? they are doing so much research. When Q was diagnosed there was almost NO information on this. Things have changed so much right? I have never actually "met" anyone who has experienced this... thanks so much for sharing!

    Angioma Alliance Cavernous Angioma Cavernous Malformation Cavernoma vascular hemangioma health organization cavernous angioma malformations venous brainstem cerebral support

    edit: Just read stars thing and it reminded me of something I haven't had to fully face yet, hope we dont.... the altered sexual stuff...

    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  11. Star*

    Star* call 911

    My only thought was - (in jest of course) that after he herded the kids off to the park - he'd somehow come home and ask for more WHOOPIE in an empty house Nothing says I want you - like being pawed over a plate of curried goat ribs.

    GOOD GOD woman I do not know how you do it. HUGS and Love -
  12. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Wow - sending HUGS.
    It sounds like you have another difficult child kid....only one that also wants and perseverates over sex. I might have to jump off the nearest cliff. :( Sorry.
    medication tweak for sure - maybe 2 mood stabilizers?
    Just a question - how do you get husband's doctors to talk to you so openly like that? I feel like I need that with Matt's doctors - but then again I don't really want Matt to know about it because he will think I am meddling or controlling him. Maybe it is different with a kid vs a spouse.
  13. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    husband's psychiatrist is the same one the kids see. He originally went to see him because we suspected ADHD back when the psychiatrist diagnosis'd the kids with ADHD (about 12 years ago). And by all accounts, husband does fit the ADHD criteria, however, psychiatrist didn't know there was much, much more to it (ie bipolar). Over time I've shared intimate details with the psychiatrist about what's gone on in our house, and based on what he's discussed with husband, how husband has responded to various medications, and my reports, he's come to the same conclusion over the past year that husband is very likely in the bipolar spectrum.

    husband was put on Paxil by his GP about 5 years ago because those seizures I told you about? Well GP thought they were panic attacks. Good news is that Paxil helped husband's rages tremendously. Bad news is that it didn't do diddly for the hypomanic garbage, nor does it completely treat his depression. But husband has seen how different life is on Paxil and he's afraid of going back to the bad-old-days when he lost control on nearly a daily basis, and thus his resistance to psychiatrist's suggestions over the past couple of years to get off the Paxil and try something else.

    Soooo... that's where we are today, and that's why I finally stopped mincing words with the psychiatrist and told him to be black, white and blunt with husband about WHY he needs to be on something different. Fingers crossed that happens soon!
  14. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Buddy, I think that husband's cavernoma was very small for a very long time. Here's why:

    He'd been having sensory symptoms for about 5 years (it did seem to coincide with starting stims for his ADHD symptoms) when he "passed out" while driving to work. That led to an MRI a few days later which showed NOTHING to the attending neuro from the ER.

    He continued to have symptoms for two more years, all the while we consulted cardiology, ENT, psychiatrist and GP. No one could figure it out. I'd been researching my butt off and found out about autonomic seizures. The symptoms fit, so the last time we went to the GP I asked the question. He agreed it was worth another trip to the neuro. We met with the neuro and without ordering any more tests referred us to an epilepsy specialist at a local teaching hospital. We gave that doctor the original MRI to review. He called and said he saw a very small abnormality in the right temp lobe and wanted new films since it had been two years. The NEW film showed that there was indeed a cavernoma in that spot and it had TRIPLED in size during that time.

    So the fact that it was barely visible when he was symptomatic leads me to believe that it probably wasn't there or was very, very small to start with. It's possible the stims caused it to grow, it's possible his slightly elevated blood pressure caused it to grow, it's possible the ibuprofen he would pop like candy for back pain or other aches caused it to grow/leak (anything that increases intracranial pressure or thins the blood can wreck havoc with these). There are admittedly a lot of factors that could have caused it to grow.

    I don't believe he has the type that is genetically influenced. Mainly because it's the only one they've ever found in his brain, which at this point has been examined extensively on film.

    I did join the Angioma Alliance when I was researching all this to figure out what was going on. I feel we are particularly blessed that this was not in a bad spot -- there are so many things that can go wrong with this malformations and I've read about some very very sad cases. I'm so sorry that Q has had to deal with something like this and on such a large scale -- a tomato-size cavernoma is HUGE for anyone, much less a child!

    I'm sure some of husband's issues are connected to the cavernoma -- I know his memory has never been great and it's actually become worse since his surgery. But he's also had head injuries from wrestling and football as a kid, so when you lump all the physical insults with the mental health issues, it's a wonder he functions as well as he does.

    I do know that there are a lot of things that can still be improved for him given the proper medications -- I've seen improvements in difficult child 2, so that gives me hope, and it keeps the door open a crack for difficult conversations to be started since we all know it's a reality in this family.

    Hope springs eternal...
  15. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Can he stay on paxil and add another mood stab?
  16. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    We'll see what psychiatrist suggests!

    difficult child 2 has done very well with Seroquel XR, and psychiatrist had mentioned that husband could benefit from something that affects dopamine and serotonin to a lesser extent. Risperdal was one drug that came up several years ago in conversations, but with difficult child 2's history of dystonic reactions and the many other similarities he shares with husband, psychiatrist may suggest Seroquel instead.
  17. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    You have NO idea how bad it was at one point... he's partially medicated now, and things are like 90% better than before. I'm still pushing for that last 10%+. psychiatrist said these seizures were likely a blessing in disguise, because the old, unmedicated husband would NEVER have agreed to go on medications before he lost his license for 6 months because of the one seizure-induced blackout. He'll be on an AE for life (thank GOD). Just need to get it through to him that Paxil ain't cuttin' it for rest of what's going on.
  18. buddy

    buddy New Member

    THat is what I was thinking too, wasn't sure how to say it... I just think it is amazing you are doing so great and helping him like that. I guess that is what it is all about when you choose to love someone in sickness and in health but wow, you have so much with the difficult child's too. Now I see why you write zookeeper, (or are you really a zookeeper, I guess I should ask)
  19. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking its both... her sig does list the "zoo" but that's only the "official" zoo...
  20. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I'm a little embarrassed now. We often say in our family that we live in a zoo so I took it that way.... Not trying to insult... just an expression we use. Sorry gcv mom! Really just meant I could see you have a TON on your plate and have to manage soooooo much.