hello from newbie

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by serenityprayer, Nov 13, 2009.

  1. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    I was directed here by a wonderful friend after my 9yr old sons recent diagnosis of Bipolar. Years ago he was diagnosis'ed as severe ADHD with anxiety disorder. After a year of therapy and natural supp's he has only gotten worse. He suffers from night terrors, rages, seperation anxiety, lying, mania and depression...he is ultra rapid cycling. He is taking risperdal 2mg per day and we are far from getting him stabilized yet. He has been symptomatic since the day of birth and after diagnosis and educating myself on early onset childhood bipolar disorder..I was thrilled to finally get an answer. My husband is also bipolar but will not get treatment at the moment...although I think we are on the verge of him getting help. Daily life at my house can be like a hurricane or tornado of difficulties.

    I have Crohn's disease, inflammatory neuropathic disease and bi-lateral trigeminal neuralgia....so I am on a lot of medication. My 11 year old daughter is the only one dealing with no medical problems ;) I am thankful she has been spared! I am learning cake decorating as a beautiful distraction and I rely on the Lord each day for strength, peace and patience. Through all of the difficulties...I am certainly blessed and full of joy and hope!

    At the moment I am dealing with my own anxiety due to the bipolar rages from my son which have been horrible after a few recent triggers from his birthday and my husband's unstable moods. I am thankful I can now see our family with clear vision...before I kept trying to figure it all out. I do feel isolated because not many can understand bipolar and chronic illness. I am thankful to find all of you...and thankful for my friend here who has been so empathetic & amazing. I find comfort in the posts here..I am so wiped out from all of it.

    God bless u all
  2. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Welcome Serenityprayer! Glad to FINALLY see you posting here :D (Guess who! Your one-and-only chicken lady friend!)

    I know you will enjoy getting to know everyone here. It's a great bunch of people who are very supportive, knowledgeable, and experienced. :bigsmile:
  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard. If you area a fan of the Serenity Prayer AND of House
    ;) we should get along just fine. DDD
  4. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Thanks so much gcvmom! Glad I finally made it here too! :tongue: U r an amazing mom & friend!!!!!!

    daughter...thanks for the welcome and yes I am a huge House fan and love the serenity prayer too! Gcvmom recently brought it back to my attention! :D My faith has sustained me through all the rough times & so have the love and support of great friends!

    Its about time to go pick up the kids from school...I am always crossing my fingers that the mood will be ok afterschool. DS had no night terrors and slept ok last night so I am praying this weekend goes well. He has a karate tournament tomorrow and that can be a trigger! We will see if the risperdal get him thru it!

    thanks again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TGIF :peaceful:
  5. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    Welcome!! Glad you joined us!

    My difficult child was on Risperdal for quite a long time. It worked wonders on him, but it made him gain lots of weight. So much that we finally gave it up so that we didn't have more problems with weight gain adding to it.

    You have your hands full. Stick around....it can be interesting here!
  6. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    Welcome! If you are a friend of the Chicken Lady then you must be A'OK!

    Yes, it does sound like you may need to be here, sorry! But we welcome you and are here for support and even good times.
  7. miles2go

    miles2go Member

    Hey welcome to our exclusive club of those with a BiPolar (BP) spouse and child. It's never boring is it? The BiPolar (BP) parent is definitely a trigger for the BiPolar (BP) kid as his psychiatrist pointed out to me. Also, an upper respiratory cold makes my son's sleep more shallow and the old circadian integrity is definitely a number one factor for this condition afaik. And I don't mean to discourage you, just to brace -- BiPolar (BP) adults don't like their medications -- takes spice/taste out of life, makes them feel "indifferent" etc. It's like a coke addict stopping.

    Dad -- abt 50.
    wife - BiPolar (BP) no medications
    difficult child 8y.o. boy, BiPolar (BP), ablify
    daughter 14, DS 5.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi there and welcome. Perhaps if you share more about your situation, we can give better "been there/done that" advice:tongue:.

    Glad you found us. Sorry you had to though.
  9. TPaul

    TPaul Idecor8

    Wanted to add my welcome to you to this great forumn. As I tell all new people to the board here. It is a wonderful group of people that a wealth of knowledge, experience and concern for those with difficult child.

  10. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Thank u so much for the welcome....wakeupcall, totoro, milestogo, midwestmom & Tpaul.

    Yes having a BiPolar (BP) husband and DS (do u all use difficult child as abbreviation for DS?) has tested my patience like nothing else. I am a very patient and forgiving person but I also have lots of codependent traits! :surprise:

    I can see how a BiPolar (BP) adult would not want to take medications...mine likes to gamble and drink. He has a very loving and caring side to him...but on the switch side he can snap in a moment & blow u away! I am hoping and praying he makes an appointment. soon to get help....we recently filed our 2nd bankruptcy...he has his own business...enuf said:( Our relationship has suffered tremendously from "I wont do it again" and then he does. I know he gets his "highs" from the gambling and he likes to go out and have drinks with friends at bars which is against my faith (and his) but he seems to build lots of anger and depression until he gets out the next time. It is an ugly cycle. With my illnesses........most of the time I just do not have the energy to fight it.:ashamed: In husband's manic phases..he also likes to spend money and comes up with crazy ideas, etc. He is depressed right now since the BK and lack of $$$ in our household. Praise be to God we were able to keep our home and cars, etc. in the BK.

    My BiPolar (BP) difficult child is not doing well on the risperdal so far...does anyone know if 2mg per day is a high or low dosage for 9yr old 70lbs?:confused: He is verrrrry manic this morn...wont stop moving, talking, irritable, doing things he is not allowed to do and saying he is a bad boy this morn..etc. I came in our office to get away from it...of course the guilt comes too for me, sigh. Anyhow, the doctor wants me to up the dose to 3mg if he is still not doing great as of Tuesday. The good news with the risperdal is that he went from not sleeping at all with-night terrors 7 days a week to sleeping now 3-4 days per week with wayyyy less night terrors. It does not seem to be helping his mood since we upped it from 1mg to 2mg though...however we've had his birthday and other out of the norm situations since the 2mg titrate. My intuition tells me to wait a few days and then try to up it...but I may call his doctor. Any experiences?

    difficult child did get thru the karate tournament yesterday, but he did not do too well with concentration, etc. There was a photographer there who was taking pics of the kids in the corner...like baseball pics only for karate. Anyhow, he would not do it...started to cry..then get angry with fists held up etc....saying "you always force me to do things, I dont want to do a picture!!!" etc. Needless to say, I decided I dont want to deal with a rage so we let it go and no picture was taken!:faint: :whiteflag:

    Stress has triggered a bit of a Crohn's flare for me....so avoiding stress is key for me right now.....but it seems to be closing in on me, LOL! I try to laugh about it.....but it is really not funny!!!!!:sad-very:

    Thanks a million to all of u..my heart and prayers go out to u all.

    Love & hope abound,
  11. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    SP, we typically use the term difficult child for our child/ren who have the challenging behaviors that led us here. If you daughter is a difficult child also, you could number them difficult child 1 and difficult child 2. Or give them some other nickname (not their real names). Or use the DS, daughter designation. Whatever you choose is fine, as long as you pick one and stick with it.

    I don't remember if I've suggested this before, but it's very likely that your son will need a second medication to control the manic symptoms. Typically it would be a mood stabilizer. These medications are best known for their use in epilepsy, but are also prescribed for mood disorders. Some are better for depressive mood stabilization, and some are better for manic end of the mood problems.

    I don't think 2mg is considered a high dose. We were up to 4mg at one point with difficult child 2 when he was on Risperdal. But everyone is different. I'm sure others will chime in with their experiences, too.

    I'm really sorry your husband is causing so much stress for you on top of all the issues you have to deal with between your own health and difficult child's issues. My best advice to you is to tend to your own health first, difficult child second. husband will have to solve his problems on his own, and hopefully he will take that first step VERY SOON. I know you'd said that he seemed more open to the idea, and that he'd willingly go to an appointment, even if you had to schedule it for him. Maybe it's time to do that and give him that push if you think it will work.

    I don't know how you maintain such a positive attitude each day with all that you have on your plate. You are an inspiration to me!
  12. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Thank u!!!!!!!!!!!!!! U r so sweet! R u kidding...u r truly the inspiration to me!!!!! I am not sure how u do it all girl :D

    I see about the "difficult child" abbrev.......think I will go with that! ;) How long does it take to be able to post immediately? It takes a day or so for my post to show up.

    I think u r right...I think difficult child needs a mood stablilizer. He seems depressed and sad one moment...then irritable & manic the next. doctor said he was ultradian cycling I believe. I will say he is easier to be around when he is manic even though it tests my patience. If u even look at him wrong when he is in a down mood...he will cry & act like you just ended his world. When he is manic..nothing hurts him and he is super silly, goofy..talking non stop & lots of other symptoms. It can change in an hour or in a day, or a week...so I really feel he needs the mood stablilizer too...going to call his doctor. I will say that since he has started the risperdal, he is getting A's on tests & writing neatly..etc...a big difference but the moods are not stablilized and the rages continue on.

    I do hope husband gets help soon....and yes I am taking care of myself first:smug:. Last week was horrid..I was caught in his anger mood tornado and I am such a peaceful person...it causes great damage to my health. Any stress or anger can send my illness into a flare. Such a bummer! He gets stuck on one problem and wont stop talking about it...he obsesses on anger and can not let it go. Ive always been one to let things go, forgive and move on.....not him. I need to start getting smart about it and put my foot down in the beginning of the tornado to protect myself from a flare.:faint:

    Oh I totally messed up...he difficult child is taking 2 (.50) pills...so it is 1mg not 2mg. I guess that is not high and I should increase it and talk to doctor about mood stablilizer. I read that neurontin is a mood stabilizer....so funny cuz I take a high dose of it (3300mg per day) for my neuropathic disease. I think that has helped me cope with all of this too...its sedating but thats a good thing for me at the moment with all of this LOL!

    I hope your difficult child responds to the new medication well!!!!!!!!!!!! ;) oh.....difficult child has daytime wetting still (years ago it was soiling too) and did it yesterday. He was manic all day....I am starting to think the wetting and mania has a connection. Have u heard of this? Poor difficult child gets so ashamed but he was tested years ago for the problem and the doctor said it was lack of emotional maturity and not to punish, etc...to ignore and it will get better. That was before the bipolar diagnosis........now I am thinking I see a connection between the mania..racing thoughts & non stop body movements, etc. & daytime enuresis.

    Here is hoping for a stable week all around!!!!!!!!:D I am off to make a 2 tiered chocolate cake (fondant covered) for my friends daughter. It will be a beautiful distraction!

  13. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Welcome to a fellow Californian!
  14. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Thank u KTMom91:D It is surely a beautiful day in the neighborhood!
  15. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Definitely do NOT start increasing medications on your own without talking to the psychiatrist first!

    difficult child 2 did have the daytime wetting problem until about 4th grade. Frankly, I think he just did not "hear" what his body was telling him when he needed to go because he was too wound up in his head. So when he finally realized he had to go, it was an emergency. We made sure his teachers knew that this was an ongoing problem, that he should not be punished for asking to go, and to allow him to go when he said he needed to... or be prepared for the consequences! They were pretty cooperative about it. I agree that it is partly a maturity issue and partly related to the noise in his head from the bipolar.

    We didn't have the bowel issues so much, but I know others here have had experience with that type of problem in their difficult child's.

    So keep posting your questions, thoughts, rants, whatever :) There are answers out there!
  16. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    Thank u gcvmom!!!!! :D

    His doctor told us to increase the medication by one pill (.50) on Tuesday (tomorrow) if he was not doing well. He is not doing great...so I think I should increase it but of course I am worried LOL! doctor said to call if anything horrid happens...otherwise increase it. I know we are not at the correct dosage cuz he is not good...but wondering if a mood stabilizer would help too as we increase...but I am thinking the doctor wants us to keep increasing and then add in the stabilizer later? I should have asked him!

    I am glad to know I am not alone in the daytime wetting.....hopefully that clears soon!!!!!!!!!

    Well difficult child is having a meltdown over cleaning his room........any advice on that one? With BiPolar (BP) kids......should I even try to get him to clean it? I am trying to change my parenting with him versus how we've handled our non-BiPolar (BP) daughter. Is it worth it? I want to teach him responsibility but I dont want a rage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:confused:

    Thankd a million!!!!!!!!!! hugs for all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  17. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    With respect to the chores/room cleaning... I've found difficult child 2 (and difficult child 1 for that matter) gets easily overwhelmed with a task like that. And when a kid like this is overwhelmed, he either has a meltdown or just shuts down.

    They still need to learn how to organize stuff and be responsible for putting their things away. But until his mental state is more stable, he may need some help in managing tasks like that. What often helps is if you break the project down into very small parts, and have them just focus on one part at a time. For instance, you might tell him to only pick up the Bionicles on the floor and put them in this box. If that's too much, then break it down further to having him pick up 10 Bionicles and put them in the box. Don't ask him to think beyond that. Once that task is finished, praise him lavishly and then move on to the next phase. Maybe it's 10 more Bionicles. Maybe it's pick up the socks (not all the clothes, just one type) on the floor and put them in the hamper. It's an oversimplification of the task so that they aren't overwhelmed.

    And some days, you may have to just back off and let it go. He won't die of a messy room afterall.

    That's where the book "The Explosive Child" helps with tips for managing kids like this. You learn a new approach to dealing with them and in turn you are able to reduce a lot of the stress in your relationship.

    Hope tomorrow is better for him and that you can get through this phase of titrating the Risperdal quickly, and perhaps move on to the next level of his treatment. Don't be shocked if this takes a while to sort out. Mood stabilizers can take several weeks to take effect. Depakote takes about 6 weeks, but some only take two. It's definitely an exercise in patience! But then, you already know a lot about that!!!
  18. serenityprayer

    serenityprayer New Member

    ha ha...I just noticed your "wattle I do?" LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Well I am thrilled to hear your advice about specific jobs & breaking it all up into sections. If I am upstairs..that is how I have handled it and he even smiles and enjoys cleaning his room. However, Ive noticed if I tell him to just clean it on his own...well that is when the meltdowns begin. He is super overwhelmed by it and I need to listen to his frustration. Somedays I do not have the energy to walk the stairs again so it becomes a battle. I think on those days I do not feel well (which is almost always LOL) and can not make it upstairs..I will let it go or send up husband!

    That is truly fantastic advice....cuz I know it works when it is applied...thank you so much! I need to go and get the book "Exposive Child". I've read "The Bipolar Child" and "Bipolar Kids"......they are wonderful books and I continue to return back to them for help and insight. The "Explosive Child" is now on the need to get list!!!!!!!!!

    Yes I think we will be titrating upwards tonight.......then calling the doctor once we watch him over the next week. I sure wish we could get him stabilized right away..but like u said, it is going to take time. Booo! lol. The good news is he is doing great in school now on it and being super proactive with homework, etc. so we are seeing some progress. The moods are just bad!

    Oh.................did u watch House last night????? If u did..........we must talk about it (dont want to give it away in case u missed it).:tongue:

    HUGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How is the Namenda going?
  19. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    Neurontin is NOT a mood stabilizer. In fact, the company that makes the stuff recently settled an immense lawsuit stemming from it's being marketed as such when clinical studies showed it to be ineffective.

    Neurontng does provide good results for some people who suffer from chronic pain, but that's about it.

    I would be VERY leery of any modern psychiatrist who prescribed the stuff.
  20. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member