Voices in her head

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by JJJ, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    We had our first sibling visit in 10 months. It went very well. We played basketball and walked around the grounds of the Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Eeyore played basketball but then stayed behind when we went on our walk. The younger 3 seemed to have dealt with it as well as could be expected (Tigger had nightmares, Eeyore became a total crab for a few days, Piglet was oblivious as usual).

    Kanga avoided our calls for 3 days. She said she didn't feel like talking to us. Kanga and I had a nice conversation yesterday. She said she liked the visit but that her voices were telling her mean things about the kids again. She does seem to want to beat the voices this time. She called the therapist and they are going to meet tomorrow to discuss the voices again. She also said she still wants the next sibling visit to happen as scheduled (in 2 weeks).

    I told her that we were very proud of her for telling her therapist about the voices and that is an important step in learning to control them.

    It saddens and frightens me that a 45-minute visit could trigger the voices against her siblings. Has anyone had a difficult child with command hallucinations who ever gained control over them?
  2. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    No experience here, JJJ, but I wanted to send you luck and strength and support. I am glad she is learning to communicate about the voices and trying to control them. You're right, that is a big step.
    I am so sorry for everyone.
  3. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    JJJ - difficult child 1 had problems with voices for a while - and faces too. She finally got mad at them and decided it was time to do something about them. They do still come back, but it's funny (sad, but funny) when I wake up in the middle of the night and hear her talking... "You're going to wake up Dad and C. I'm tired of having to listen to you and I'm turning you off now." She treats them like a radio, and after a few months of this... They mostly went away! It is almost as if, by deciding she did not want them any more, she is controlling them with a volume dial. Or changing the station, maybe.

    I don't know if that will work for Kanga, but that's what J did... So far, so good...
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I think mostly medication works for that. If you ever saw "A Brilliant Mind," even Nash, the genius, couldn't control them on his own. But our medications now are wonderful for hallucinations. I go to a self help group for mentally ill people and some hear voices and have learned to live with them (medications turn down the volume A LOT). My own opinion on this child's medications is no way Jose would I put anyone with voices on Zoloft. They CAUSE hallucinations in many people. I'd be leery of the Zoloft maybe making them worse.
  5. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    MWM - no joke. Wellbutrin has that effect, too - difficult child finally refused to take it any more and that's when she started to control the voices. I do think the Seroquel is helping - because let's be honest, any medication that is not taken "forever" is mostly like cough syrup - treats the symptoms but not the cause. So if the medication is helping the person learn how to deal with the issues at hand, then what they learned sticks around when the medications disappear.

    That said, there ARE medications that keep things to a dull roar so that the person CAN deal with them. These would fall into the "forever" category with stuff like coumadin, insulin...

    Personally, I'm not fond of medications, but the powers that be wouldn't have given humankind the knowledge to figure them out if they weren't mean to be used, right?!
  6. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    No experience, but wanted to add my support. I'm glad she's recognizing that she needs to tell her therapist about this.
  7. no advice. Just wanted to say that I'm glad the sibling visit went as well as it did. It is very good that Kanga appears to want to control the voices and sought the help of her therapist. I am sorry though that the younger kids are having such problems, this has got to be so hard for them and for you.


  8. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    JJJ, she needs to be on a better medication combo to combat the voices. She might need a mood stabilizer in addition to an atypical antipsychotic (like Abilify). Furthermore, Abilify might need to be increased or augmented by a second antipsychotic.

    As others have mentioned, Zoloft could be making the voices worse. I'd recommend a discussion with the podc about that.
  9. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    I'm glad that you got to spend time with your beautiful Kanga. It sounds like she is doing her best to adapt and get along with the rules. Also sounds like she's trying very hard to do the right things. I'm very proud of her for her efforts. Give her a hug from her Aunti Star.

    As far as the fallout? Maybe next visit could just be a video tape of the kids throughout the weeks - leave the camera plugged in and grab it during the moment - catch the kids saying HI to her or telling her they miss her, love her - wish she was able to help them do this chore or that - then let them stay home and just take the video tape for her to watch????

    If the kids trigger her voices - there must be a voice or persona in there that is jealous. I'm by no means even savy on schizophrenic episodes, but if she named the jealous personality - and then maybe at the last end of the tape you and DF talk to Kanga AND mention the named voice so it was recognized - for now? Maybe it would help her not be jealous. If jealousy is a personality , and kindness is a personality etc - maybe recognizing the jealous one would send a message to her brain that EVERYONE in her head is loved - no reason to be jealous of the little ones????

    I dunno know - poor kid - my heart really goes out to her, but I'm in tears thinking that she IS making progress. You've fought so long and so hard for her well being - Gosh Mom - TAKE A BOW........I think this was great news.

    I'm also on the bandwagon with can't take Zoloft. It did cause me to have thoughts - maybe internal voices that wanted me to plan my own suicide. Not carry it out - just plan it over and over. Did the same thing for Dude too when he was 13, 16-17. Some chemical makeups just can't deal with it and the doctor told us that usually if the Mother can't take it - neither will the child be able to.

  10. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Just wanted to jump in and offer my support. I am so pleased that Kanga is taking some responsibility for herself, even not talking to you for 3 days, was in some way trying to take care of herself because she was probably afraid of what she would say.

    Have you ever read the book A Beautiful Mind? The book is amazingly insightful about hallucinations, and the brain of a schizophrenic. Even better than the movie.

    I do not have any personal experience, but I have heard and read about people learning to face their voices - and talk them back out of their head, basically. In other words, recognizing they are voices, and refusing to allow them power - vs - giving into them and assuming they are reality. In fact it seems Kanga is starting to do this a little bit - which is great news.

    Hugs & strength.
  11. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    K doesn't have command hallucinations. She has had the mean voices in the past.

    Now it is mostly OK. They still get angry but on a much less frequency.

    She will talk about them when she is hypo or manic. She is pretty much OK with the voices at this point and talks with her psychiatrist about them.
    Because they are part of her Bipolar her psychiatrist is not so concerned yet.
    She does not feel she has schizo-affective disorder or schizophrenia. Nor do we upon much thorough research.

    We will see how it unravels as she gets older.
    The AP"S seem to keep it under control for the most part.
    I have seen a correlation with stress, anxiety etc. and her visual or auditory hallucinations. For K at times they are actually a sense of comfort.
    K and her psychiatrist have an open dialogue about the voices and visuals.
    The rule is she has to leave them at home, this doesn't work, but it gives her something to work on. It also lets her know that it is OK. psychiatrist also feels that for some BiPolar (BP) patients this symptom does go away with time and therapy. Especially if it isn't schizophrenia, which most times it isn't, Schizophrenia is very rare.

    But if K were having command hallucinations or they were scaring her or not being decreased by medications, I would have a call into and pushing psychiatrist for answers and help.
    Also like the others said I would look into the medications anyway... you never know.
  12. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Thanks all. I spoke with psychiatrist today. He doesn't want to change her medications because Kanga denied the voiced to the nurse and downplayed them when he spoke with her today. Unfortunetly both boys had crisis today so I missed the phone call while psychiatrist had Kanga with him but I did get to talk to him afterwards.

    He is going to see her again in two weeks. She was on Risperdal (dose got to max for her weight without symptom control, switched to Geodon -- she was a drugged zombie and still the voices controlled her, then she got TD and a medwash and now Abilify).

    I just hope that I can get Kanga to admit to him how bad the voices really are and also to the visual hallucinations so that when he writes her psychiatric evaluation it is accurate.