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!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Moms with Combat Stress

An article appeared recently in the news stating that moms of autistic kids have the same amount of stress as soldiers in combat. No kidding. I think that moms of bipolar kids must have at least that amount of stress and possibly more. I mean we are living with a frequently violent child when they are unstable, which is often much of the time, save for the rare times when all medicines are just right, the school situation is just right, and the rest of the family is doing ok. I wake up every morning since Caroline has come back from the RTC in August with a clenched jaw, muscles in my back and neck in tight knots, and a sense of tension and anxiety following horrible nightmares every night. I think it is PTSD from so many years living in chaos and fear. I need to renew our YMCA membership so I get back into yoga and pilates, which bring healing for us living this sort of life. Combat would definitely describe our daily lives, fighting to keep our children, and ourselves, sane.


Faith said...

Megan, exercise definitely helps with stress. You might look into getting a massage once in a while, too. Of course that can get expensive, but there may be massage schools in your area that offer them for less. Sorry to hear that things are more stressed right now. It seemed that things had been going pretty well since she came back from Meridell.

Corrie Howe said...

I read a similar article (if not the same). I agree

erika said...

And you are a real trooper.

Accidental Expert said...

Boy does this post hit home for me today. We have been dealing with lots of "combat" lately around here.

As the mother of an autistic child and a bipolar one, I have to say, many times dealing with the bipolar is hardest.

Yoga huh? I think I'll have to look into that.

Cinda said...

Megan, you are so right-on with this. Once out of the most critical stages I finally found time to see a therapist, get back to yoga and do walking meditations. Daughter Linea was diagnosed with PTSD herself from the terrifying things she has gone through when unstable. She is working on that with her psychologist. Her psychiatrist has assured that the anniversaries of some of the worst times are noted and treated as they arise from year to year as they are triggers. It is not only we parents that have to deal with this but our children! Great post. Do take care. As my therapist reminds me, "Breathe and breathe into yourself a space inside of you, for you." PS It took awhile for me to admit I needed a little help to get through this since I am the "helper" and do this stuff as part of my job!

Cinda said...

Yeah! Linea wrote on her blog and offered all of us in the mental health trenches some advice. It means so much more coming from her. I think it will make you smile today! http://www.lineajohnson.blogspot.com