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!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Excited About an Idea

I have this idea that I can't stop thinking about: a weekend national conference for parents of bipolar kids and teens that would be at a very nice resort type of retreat center, with seminars led by experts in areas of education, psychology, psychiatric medication, social skill building, self-care for parents, navigating health insurance and state services, etc. I would include time for small focus groups, and free time where we could compare notes, make new friends, and enjoy relaxing at a spa getting pedicures, facials, or eating out, and exploring a fun new city without our kids! I think I will start working to make this happen because I think it is so very much needed. I hear from so many parents who are struggling to get the right help for their children, and time for themselves, which is nearly nonexistent. Maybe we could have "vendors" so to speak from special summer camps, residential treatment centers, and therapeutic school reps, and a book table, and resource center. I have so many ideas for something like this. We have a wonderful hotel and conference center nearby with an attached spa and a five star restaurant, about 20 minutes from a beach. Maybe I could look into their rates and availabilities. I will contact CABF also to see what kind of support I could get from them. Wouldn't it be great to hear from Dr. Papalos and Dr. Wilens, and many others who are experts in all things related to these special needs kids? Cinda, I need to get you on board!

13 comments:

Through Thick and Thin said...

i absolutely love this idea!!!

Megan said...

Oh good! I think we parents need something for ourselves. I noticed lots of conferences for the experts, but nothing for the caregivers! We need each other and we need a break!

Vampi said...

That's a great idea!

domandkat said...

That sounds splendid! Go for it! Got any idea where to start? I'm not sure I would!

Amy said...

I would be there and will be glad to help in anyway I can.

J-momma said...

that would be awesome! but could you please have it on the east coast so i can go? :)

Megan said...

I do live on the East Coast. Maybe there should be two: one on the East coast and one on the West!

wileycoyote said...

OMG as my daughter might say w/ a lot of emotion and energy! My wife and I would be there for sure but I must ask, which side of the States are we referring? We are on the East coast, NC. :)

Hartley said...

Love your idea--I am in the Seattle area and would love to help coordinate on this end. I do have some experience and some very good connections out here.

Let me know if you take this idea anywhere!

Hartley
www.hartleysboys.com

Megan said...

I sent an email to CABF about the idea and I haven't heard back from them. I wonder if I should call them. Something like this needs the support of a major organization like them, or NAMI, etc. I will keep pestering them...nicely of course!

Jana said...

I love this idea. This is something I think I would probably dig into the pockets for and fly to, though it would be great if it was in the Midwest. I would love to get something like this going in our area. Our family lives in a community of 160,000+ and there is nothing like this. People around this area are still really afraid to talk about mental health issues, especially bipolar, though we are fortunate enough to have a dedicated inpatient psychiatric hospital and partial hospitaliation. Great idea.

sandi said...

Hi.. I can't find your camp links on your site. Can u email to me? Skanders0702@yahoo.com. thanks

sandi said...

Hello. Can u give me the links you have for the camps for children with bipolar disorder?