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, December 5, 2010

Helpful Holiday Tips: Decorating the Tree, Unwrapping Presents, Shopping

Decorating the tree?  Let your bp kid decorate the tree with their own ornaments separately from everyone else.  They don't do well with the noise and confusion of the whole family trying to decorate at once, and meltdown can ensue.  We know.  Same thing with present opening: you may want to have them unwrap their gifts in a separate, quiet corner of a room,  everything in front of them ready to go.  Holiday traditions have to take a back seat sometimes to provide these kids with order instead of chaos.  Like going to the light displays that you drive through:  you may want to take the bp kid by themselves so the siblings in the car don't drive them crazy.  Peaceful, leisurely drives are always better than loud experiences in a very small  space.  Christmas shopping?  Avoid the malls when packed at peak times.  Try one big box store at a less busy time, like early in the morning on a week day or on weekend early enough so it is empty.  Everyone will enjoy a better shopping experience.  Or let them shop online for their siblings, friends, etc.  Or find a quiet gift making activity.  Oh, and if there is a ginger bread house to decorate, let them have time to decorate by themselves, maybe a specified part of the house, without loud siblings around.  Same thing with decorating cookies.  Give them their own cookies and space and decors during a quiet time alone and this can be a great experience!  Anything that can be done in a less chaotic way is going to go so much more smoothly.

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