Bizarre personality difficulties

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Nomad, Mar 31, 2018.

  1. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Our daughter has been diagnosis’d with bipolar. She is 30 now and got this diagnosis in elementary school.
    She can by hyper, moody, impulsive , argumentative and overly sensitive. (Fun!!!)
    She has other separate health issues too (physical).
    She is on disability and needs to be.

    She is visiting for the holiday. We now live in cities 3+ hours apart.

    Such peculiarities. Here are examples:
    10-14 days ago we drove by a house and noticed the fence was completely gone. No remnants of the fence. We were talking about it in front of her. She said angrily we were mistaken and she went by this same house a week ago, and the fence was fine. Insisted. Out of curiosity, my husband called the neighbor of these people and they said “no, they took the fence down and never put it back up and it is currently gone.” Bottom line...why was she arguing vehemently over something in which she was clearly wrong?

    We offered to take her to some nicer restaurants tonight. She complains bitterly that we take her to the same places over and over again when she visits. There are a few that are popular and we gave her three choices and described them. Asked could she pick one because since it’s Saturday, it’s best to make a reservation. She got argumentative and angry. Said she didn’t like any of them. I think some of this involves my husband because they are restaurants he likes. His attitude is that unless it’s her birthday or something, if he is going to spend a lot of money, he would like to be part of the decision making. But, he was willing to let her make the final choice. She got mad. Then she picked a common restaurant she goes to all the time. My husband said this seemed contradictory and she blasted him for being difficult. My head is spinning. I think she could of compromised a little. WTH?

    She just went to the bathroom and cane out and screamed at me for not having extra toilet paper in the bathroom. Said she had to use wet wipes. I had to interrupt her and tell her the TP was under the sink but....then she screamed some more and didn’t let me finish . Then I told her they (extra TP) were pushed back slightly in the cabinet, but if she looked carefully she would definitely see the extra toilet paper under the cabinet. She went back into the bathroom and I heard her growl “oh.”

    We all got coffee at Starbucks drive through. She was in the backseat. I handed her her coffee and a napkin. She made a sarcastic remark that she didn’t need a napkin.

    Anyway...what is this crap?

    This visit is actually better than most.

    We’ve had visits were 75% or more of her comments were sarcastic, angry or argumentative. We had a trip once that was so bad I ended up crying and got an ernergency script for any future visits (for me!) and made it clear she would not be visiting if she did not improve significantly. My nerves were shot to hexx.

    It’s about 40-50 percent this trip.

    She has great trouble making friends and some of them mention her odd attitude. Some are able to ignore it. Some dump her . They will literally secretly leave her somewhere and go off without her after she says something sarcastic or bizarre.

    What the heck is this behavior?

  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Just an idea as I was reading.

    I have an autistic son and he does have a sweet disposition but prefers familiar places to new ones,is picky about what he eats and is not different in a BAD way, but if you didn't know him well you may think he is odd. He is very good at passing for normal but he is different.

    Hate to keep repeating this but so many people here with different personalities are diagnosed with bipolar that it seems that anyone who has any sort of moodswings is diagnosed with bipolar. I don't think it's always the right diagnosis. I think often there are other reasons for moodswings...Asperger's and borderline being two.

    I don't know if her diagnoses even matters now as she is getting help and at least does not harm you or get dangerous. Maybe read about autism high functioning or, heck, just accept her the way she is....different. Yes, it will irritate you sometimes but you know who she is and how she acts. Here is an example of how we deal with Sonic. He hates crowds and gets bored easily so we are not going to insist he see Jumper graduate, although this is an important milestone for her and they love each other very much. But he could have a bad panic attack two hours from home with ten other people there to see Jumper graduate. If he does want to come he will be allowed to bring his little ame sytem to keep him distracted from the crowd and and if he needs to leave to get away from the crowd we will take him to the car. Is this the norm,? No! But he is this way so we make exceptions almost like an IEP for his

    Back to your daughter, the fence has me puzzled unless she never paid attention before and really thought it was there. In the big picture...does it matter? Maybe she doesn't have a good visual memory. I don't! It's possible.

    I would just be happy she is getting treatment and be firm about where you want to eat and if she makes a cranky comment ignore it and think in your head "Whatever!" You don't need to respond to nasty comments at all. They don't deserve responses. we all know,,,responses fuel the fire!

    Love and hugs to one of our smartest, nicest members.
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    Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
  3. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    This sounds like mixed states to me. Without medication, mixed states is where I live.

    Its not a nice place to live, and I avoid people because I know it can make a not very nice person to be around.

    It's sort of an "everything sucks" way of thinking. The difference is, I no longer vocalize my opinion when in mixed states. I isolate because I'm afraid I will vocalize my opinion.

    Unfortunately, as a young person, I used to sometimes be spoiling for an argument sometimes, and yes...did get into the "nothing is right for me" way of thinking.

    She needs to get her medications checked out, and you need to avoid her until she can act like a reasonable human being.
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  4. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi nomad

    I agree with the above posters. There is kind of a meeting in the middle, that they advocate.

    On the one hand there is the recognition of limits. Of certain basic personality patterns that are rigid and inflexible: the expectation that she change seems unreasonable. From what you have posted she has limited insight, self awareness and poor coping.

    It seems that to make the visits go easier, we need to change our expectations, making the result about what will work. Clearly fine restaurants do not work.

    But this does not mean taking her crxp. There needs to be built in the idea that she needs to be responsible for her behavior. But if the expectation is that she conform in situations that trigger her? Is that fair?

    But I think you need to be ready to leave.

    There is something I deal with. There are behaviors by my son I hate. I can't stand them. There is no way I want to meet half way. My son can act oddly and disordered, but I hang onto the 80 percent of his presentation that is normal, and try to reject the disordered. At the root: I do not want him to be ill. I am tempted to reject what is ill. Is this fair?

    I am learning this is my problem. I leave my rightful lane to critique or to react to him, if he is not acting against me. And he is not. He has a right to be him. Even odd.

    I am learning a lot of this is my stuff. Learning boundaries. Dealing with my stuff. Staying centered in me. Basic compassion. Realistic expectations for myself and my child and us together. Most of all: that my son is not responsible to meet my expectations or needs. Those are mine.
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    Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
  5. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Thank you for letting me vent and giving me great input.
    And thank you for those very nice words Swot. give me tremendous insight!!!!

    We literally have discussed all these things. As odd as this sounds, we sometimes think it is mixed states AND either brain damage or some form of autism. It is extraordinarily difficult to be around. It is much worse if she is tense. She is often tense around her brother, who is a bio child. She is often envious of him. He saves his money and is very well organized. Naturally, this results in positive things for him and his family. This confuses and troubles her. She has little to no cause and effect reasoning powers.

    Today she is better (more pleasant). However, earlier when we all woke up I asked her how her night was and she said “I slept funny and have some pain and I’m upset I’m not dead. “ moments later, she was happily making breakfast.

    She has a small amount of control of her mood swings and nastiness and I do expect her to use it...even if it is somewhat limited.

    Yes...sometimes she is “spoiling” for a fight. If she gets around another person with the same illness in the same state of mind...there can be an explosion.

    I’ve heard over the years that as folks with this or related cobditions mature, with insight and effort, they do better.

    on the other hand, we are doing our very best not to poke the bear. I think you know what I mean.
    Also, very similarly, We have changed our expectations and our doing our very best to react calmly. (Copa :))

    We have set many boundaries with her and I’m pleased to say by and large they have worked.

    But, the overall strain is great.
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  6. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Apologies...more venting. I might need to take my emergency tablet.

    We had dayghter’s Hair done yesterday.

    Today, it is a little messy. She got it wet. Hair curling a little. Holiday event in a few hours.

    She can’t find the spray she likes to use before using her heat straightener. And it’s not coming out well. So, I calmly told her I recently found one I love and would she like to try mine instead. She screamed at me for five minutes saying that spraying her hair with any product would wet it and potentially cause more problems. Huh?

    She is hysterical.

    Soooo...yes, the idea of being with others does seem to be an issue. Even though she knows these people (all of them) fairly well. She sees some of them regularly (her brother for ex) and the others 3x a year.

    Where are my pills?

    She makes holidays s x c k. I’m trying.
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2018
  7. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Nomad. This is social anxiety, and I have it bad. Y'see, even if people were OK 3 or 6 months ago, they might've changed, or you might've changed, and then liking you then, doesn't mean they won't hate you now.

    Yeah...been there done that, still take a lorazepam before get-togethers with-what little family I have.
  8. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Thank you GN. Makes sense.
    Weird question...
    With her impulsive control issues, I would feel uncomfortable with her having a script for something like that.
    Additionally, she has had friends who would definitely take advantage of something like that.
    If we were living in the same city , I might (might) be willing to hold a small script for her to give her a tablet when she says she is in great need.
    Right this second, I can’t see her being as responsible as one absolutely needs to be with that type of script.
    I have thought if her asking the doctor for like three or four tablets. She sees the psychiatrist approx every four months. She would have to know that she can only take one approx once a month. Just random thoughts.
  9. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    The hair? She is off the charts anxious. You stepped in it nomad. I remember being like that very occasionally when young. Did not go to an event or first day on a job due to bad hair day.

    As far as waking up sorry to not be dead...and then happily making breakfast...I see this as normal.

    She does not censor or edit what she verbalizes. The rest of us do. When I am just waking, the mentalizations from sleep/dream states are still in my head. Momentarily. But I don't make it a topic of conversation. Usually.

    Personally I would not consider the medications. She is better served to learn to self soothe, regulating her behavior by strategies she can learn. Me too.
  10. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    It's unlikely that her doctor would give her any "drugs of abuse", of which Ativan/Lorazepam is one (it's a benzo).

    Many SSRIs help with-anxiety. I'm on benzos after failing trials of the drugs more commonly used, and because my anxiety is crippling to the point of panic disorder.

    Especially with the impulse control issues your daughter has, it's highly unlikely that a reputable doctor would prescribe any medications that can be abused.

    While I've been known to make the occasional bad decision, I don't have issues with impulse control for the most part.

    You and I both know that the 4 pills lasting 4 mos isn't going to happen. She'll take them, like the way they make her feel, and go looking for more.
  11. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Thank you. True.
    Although she is not prone to drug abuse...still true.

    Stuff like what you just said (accurately) use to upset me deeply. The reason why is that it is frustrating when she has so many issues, it’s somewhere between impossible and extraordinarily unlikely to work through the various problems.
    I gave 100 plus percent trying to help her. My husband assured me that I absolutely did help her. She is an adult now and I have health problems up the ....So, no more huge help etc.
    she left this morning and I have such brain fog, I can barely function.
    My husband is in a deep sleep. Exhausted. Middle of the early afternoon....we both feel deeply drained.
    She has a good heart, but the mood swings and extreme anxiety attacks takes it out it out of us big time.
    She hugged me when she left and smiled and said “love ya!!!!”
    Her doctor’s have not come up with great medication ideas and although she does a little better with regularl therapy, she refuses to go. You can lead a horse to water but can’t make her drink.
    It means a lot to me that you guys helped me through this weekend, listened and offered good input.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
  12. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Just catching up (not on here on weekends). Wow.

    So glad you got through this. It does sound EXHAUSTING. Mentally and physically. So glad she has her own place to live away from you. That would be too hard and not good for her either!

  13. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    You know Nomad, when I would visit my mother as an older adult, I would stay at her house. There was a time I would bring my dog, in addition to my young child. It was a huge strain to my mother and frequently the visits would end in conflict for which I blamed her.

    In retrospect I see I was wrong and should have gotten a motel.

    I do not think it would be wrong to put your daughter up in a motel when she visits. What you would be preserving and protecting is the relationship as well as yourselves.
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  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I think it's hard also to be physically in the same place with a parent or grown child for any length of time. I like the idea of a hotel room especially with a difficult adult child. Honestly, the times I visited Bart were at his house and he was at times argumentative and I had to bite my tongue because grandson was there and no way would I argue with my grandson him there. I had to take many walks.

    I have stayed with Princess and no problem with her or baby but her SO is a problem and I started staying in hotels because I did not feel comfortable around him. My daughter understood...she knows he is difficult and is currently having problems with him...

    It is just easier for adults to have space. You seem to have done it all for your her a hotel room may be great for both of you, even if it possible for you to spend a few days with your son. All of our kids are different.
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  15. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Yes. I finally took the dive, too. After years of sleeping on my mother's sofa for holidays, etc, I booked a hotel room for thiscoming Friday night, when we will be celebrating Passover.

    My nephew and his wife are in from Taiwan, and nephew is observant (and doing the cooking), so it will be the whole magillah.

    My mother doesn't want to believe that sleeping on her couch is a night of misery for me, guilts me if talk about renting a room because $$$. This time she's got the grandkids there, so is renting a bed, has nephew's wife on the couch, so nowhere for me, and it'll run late. This way I can stay later, have a comfortable sleep, check out in the AM, and come back to the apartment and spend a bit more time with "the kids" and my mother before driving home.

    Mum is gonna have a fit. I'll have to spend time with my sister, but she won't try any gaslighting in company and we no longer talk on the phone or IM.

    Should be least I got a cheap hotel room.
  16. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Sheesh...she sounds like me when I was 12.