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!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Yet more hoops to go through

We are a Navy family, and there is a program for military families called EFMP, which spells Exceptional Family Member Program. Enrolling in this would allow Bill to only be assigned to places that have the necessary treatment facilities for Caroline, and not overseas.  If you can get your child qualified for that(more paperwork for school system, doctors, us) then we may be able to get qualified for ECHO which is Exceptional Child  something or other, through which we may be able to obtain free services or extra services for a small fee for Caroline, such as an in-home helper, occupational, speech therapy, etc.  Just one more thing to fill out and wait on.  Oh, and our insurance company wants to us to get her qualified for Medicaid so that she would again receive more service, that they wouldn't have to pay for.  More paperwork.

Right now the biggest question for us is should we be looking at a long-term residential treatment center, where she would stay for up to a year.  That isn't our desire, but we are seeing more and more that Caroline is just so far behind academically, emotionally, socially and that what we have for her here may not be enough.  She is at a critical junction and we want to give her the best we can so that she can function in life. 


EmilyG said...

I recently stumbled across your blog and have read every post.

I was diagnosed with bipolar when I was 17. I am now 21 and thriving happily. Though it is still a daily struggle, God has been my ever present source of strength, and He cares for His little ones continually.

Reading your blog has helped me see some of what my family has gone through and is still going through with my condition. Through all the pain, misunderstandings, stigma, blame and despair love is the strong cord that keeps a family together. Do not despair, you are not alone.

If I can be of help in anyway, let me know. I'd be happy to share my experiences and coping techniques with you if that could help. My email is on my profile page.

domandkat said...

This SO makes my heart ache. I will be praying for you big time - ALL of you.

I need to give you a hug...AND some serious chocolate. Not that either will make the situation better, but anyway...