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Schmidt re: sister concerns

Posted by Lyrical13 on February 22, 2004, at 16:22:59

In reply to PBP Guest Expert: Erika Schmidt, LCSW, posted by Dr. Bob on February 22, 2004, at 2:44:56

I have concerns about my younger sister who is 15. I am 34. (we're technically half sisters... same dad, different mom). Within the past year or so she has been dx'ed with a mood disorder. The first symptoms were panic/anxiety but she has since experienced severe depression. The doc has also mentioned bipolar. (MHx note: Several members of our dad's family have battled with depression/anxiety. After 13 yrs of thinking I was depressed w/ GAD I have recently been dx'ed BPII)

Back in Nov. she was talking/writing about suicide and she showed me her arms... there were scars all the way up to her shoulder where she had cut herself. They looked pretty old. I asked her how long she had been doing it and she said for 2 or 3 years. We have a very good relationship and have "sister night" every week. She is on Prozac and Trileptal. The day she showed me her arms I urged her to call her doctor. I also told her mom that she needed to see the doc immediately. They contacted her doc and he raised the Trileptal.

My concern is that she is still struggling. Falling apart during the week that her best friend was out of town. Still seems down but says she's "OK". She quit going to counseling because the counselor made her mad. She isn't seeing a psychiatrist. Her pediatrician prescribes her meds but she doesn't see him for regular visits. I have expressed my concern about this to her and to my parents. I have urged her to talk to someone else (new counselor) and to think about finding an adolescent psychiatrist. I even researched docs/counselors in the area that specialize in her type of problems. I gave the info to both parents (for some reason my step-mom thought we should keep this all secret from my dad.... I finally told him what was going on b/c a few months had gone by and my s-mom hadn't followed through on anything....she is basically trying to be the "cool mom" and not make her daughter mad. Anyway, I told my dad what was happened with HIS daughter and he thanked me and asked for more info. I gave it to him and haven't heard anything else yet.)

I guess what I want to know is if you have any other advice for getting sis some help. I am afraid she will do something to seriously hurt herself. I think I have done all I can do. I think it is in my parents' hands...and God's hands. I am so frustrated though that they aren't taking this more seriously.

Thanks for any insight or advice you might be able to give.





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poster:Lyrical13 thread:308062