About our Daughter

I am mother to four wonderful daughters, ages 17, 19, 21, and 23, and wife to the greatest husband on earth. God has given us a special child to raise one who was diagnosed with early-onset bipolar disorder at the age of seven, though she showed signs of it from the age of fifteen months. She also has ADHD, Sensory Integration Disorder (sensory seeking), Dyslexia, and Non-Verbal Learning Disorder-NOS, all typical comorbidities for a bipolar child. In spite of the trials, she enjoys lacrosse, running (finished her first marathon in October of 2014!), and reading and writing her own books. I will share with you the many joys and sorrows we have faced and will face in the future with the hope that you may find better understanding about this mental illness caused by both chemical and structural abnormalities in the brain. I desire that you will be encouraged by this blog if you are also dealing with a bipolar child. Thank you for reading and sharing in our journey.

How Did You Know She Was Bipolar So Young?

I wrote a long explanation of how we came to this bipolar diagnosis in a child so young under my post of March 19th of 2009. If your child or a child you know bears similarities, please seek out a good psychiatrist and don't wait for "things to get better." Often they will simply get worse, and the longer a child is unmedicated, the more damage their brain can accrue. Early diagnoses and treatment are key to providing these children with a chance at a successful life later as a teen and an adult.
Never change, start or stop a medication without the approval of your child's physician!

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Child Study/IEP process

Today we began the process of going through our local public school system to get a Child Study for Caroline in order to obtain an IEP (Individual Educational Plan) and possible city/state services for Caroline at home.  During her last hospitalization we were strongly urged to seek help from the Community Services Board so that so much of the burden isn't on us everyday.  We might be able to get someone to come to our home several days a week to help tutor her, mediate, provide respite care, or even get free occupational therapy, or free tuition to a special needs school if the state cannot provide what she needs.  

 Students who are enrolled in public school and have either learning difficulties or emotional/behavioral issues are referred to a team in the school including a psychologist, social worker, special ed. teachers, etc, who determine if the child needs an IEP.  Then a home study is done where the child is interviewed and given a battery of tests.  If it is found that the child would benefit from an IEP, then she would be referred to another team to determine the exact services needed.  The team today told us they could not write an IEP because she is not enrolled in public school, but the Community Service Board says they are supposed to do this. We are not sure what to do next, but I guess we will do some digging and find out.  The team today were very impressed with Caroline's achievement testing, but we did emphasize that her daily performance is a struggle, and that this year's academics have been particularly inconsistent.

Right now we are also dealing with my father-in-law being deathly ill with pneumonia, so we are dealing with a lot this week.  I have hired a maid service and I wish I had done this years ago.  When your family is in constant crisis, it is very hard to keep up with the daily grind, even with the girls doing chores.  The house is so much cleaner now and everyone is happier.  Now if I could just conquer the laundry.

1 comment:

domandkat said...

Wow guys...

But my response is in regards to the maid service - ENJOY!!!! I only have someone come once a month, but with just 2 kids I can't keep this place anywhere close to clean.

ENJOY!!! ENJOY!!!! ENJOY!!!!!!!