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Re: so what can anyone do? Dory

Posted by seldomseen on January 2, 2008, at 8:27:27

In reply to so what can anyone do?, posted by Dory on January 1, 2008, at 22:16:13

My mom is bipolar and if I may, I would like to share with you a little bit of her story as I think it may offer you some hope.

Lamictal really helped my mom, but only after she lost her job, and I think it is only a part of the treatment. She absolutely exploded on Christmas day - this time at my sister and in front of her children. Everyone was crying and yelling. Presents went unopened, dinner was left on the table. Later I tried to help my sister see that our mother was ill, but she couldn't get past the hurt and how do you explain this to her children?

I had a long talk with my mom and her therapist after that. I can't believe she allowed me to sit in, but she did and the therapist made some excellent points.

He indicated that bipolar is just like any other chronic illness in that it has to be managed. If my mom were diabetic, she would have to monitor her blood sugar at multiple times during the day and take her insulin.

The situation is similar with bipolar, except that she needs to constantly monitor her emotions and take steps to keep them in check.

Nothing or no event was making her lash out, it was coming from the illness, but she was still responsible for it.
If she feels as though she is going to lash out she simply needs to get out of the situation. If she feels particularly sad, she needs to start talking about it and get help.

No, it isn't fair that she has bipolar and no it isn't fair that she has the burden of dealing with it, but that it was reality and she needed to face it.

He also indicated that he thought bipolar was contagious - not in the way other people would become bipolar, but that after a blow up, the shockwaves could really damage those in its wake and it was incumbent on her not to let that happen.

After that, I felt kinda bad for my mom, but she said she felt like she had a break through.

She said that she had always felt powerless to do ANYTHING about her behaviour, but that maybe she wasn't. She's going to start keeping an emotion journal to help her to keep track and get more in touch with how she feels and that she was "more" than this illness. She was also going to reach out to my sister and slowly, begin to rebuild that bridge that was burnt on Christmas day.

I vowed to help her anyway I could.





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