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 1, 2012

Mathnasium Testing and Verdict

Caroline had a math assessment done at Mathnasium yesterday, and let's just say that she shouldn't be taking Algebra I right now.  Sigh.  Her math learning disability evidenced itself in every problem.  She can't remember any of her pre-Algebra skills!!! And she has had two years of pre-Algebra!!!  She could do the basic algebra equations because that is what she is working on right now.  But she can't remember how to turn decimals into percentages and her word problem skills were dismal!  So this means that we have to go back to a seventh grade math level again in tutoring.  Knowing how poor her long term memory was when Learning RX tested her in October, we aren't surprised, just saddened.  Algebra may not be something she will finish this year before school starts in the fall.  In which case she may be doing some summer school in high school so she can get the four years of math that she needs to go to college.  And it is quite obvious now that she can never take a break from math in the summer.  She will need the constant reinforcement to not lose any ground she has made.  The hard part is that her 14 year old 8th grade younger sister is flying through Algebra this year, and Caroline is in the 9th grade and is turning 16 next week and can't get beyond pre-Algebra.  :(


cally said...

Ick! Algebra. The bane of my existence in high school! My dd has a lot of trouble with word problems, too. She also does dismally on standardized tests. The GOOD thing (have to look for those) about her needing to do schoolwork during the summer is the fact that she will maintain structure in her life and keep the neurons firing. Too much down time can be a bad thing.
You are a good mom for getting her checked out! Hugs!

the mom that could said...

I have a nine year old son with bipolar disorder (amongst other things) and I too am homeschooling him. His struggles are in reading. It is so hard to encourage him to do it, when it is so very hard for him. I have a five year old who is almost passing his brother up with reading. It is really hard to not make my oldest feel shamed, while still praising the acadmic achievements of my little guy! It is no easy path to take. I'm just glad I'm not the only one. Sometimes it certainly does feel that way.

Mama Bear said...

I feel your pain, my son is failing every math test right now. He just can't get through the steps, as a result, he just quits and refuses to do the work. Now they only see a problem with behavior, not recognizing that his brain is struggling with doing math, resulting in bad behavior. Grrrr..

Megan said...

Thanks for the comments. It takes a village to raise these kids sometimes!