View Full Version : New to the boards

05-26-13, 06:21 PM
My name is Jennifer and I have an 11 year old son who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder this past year after SEVERAL failed attempts at treating ADHD. To make a VERY long story short, after being hospitalized after suicidal impulses on one medication, we seemed to finally find the right cocktail of meds. He is the oldest of my 4 children and over the last 5 months he had become increasingly more violent toward his younger brother. Being on so many meds (Daytrana, Abilify, and Seroquil) I got to the point where I didn't know what medication was helping. I made the decision to take him off everything to see what we were working with since he has been on meds since he was 6. He is now unbearable to be around. Hateful words, constant physical violence toward siblings.... The kicker is, he is only like this for certain people. When his dad is home, he still goes off, but he is able to get control of himself a lot faster. He is well behaved at school and pulled good grades up until I stopped all meds. (With his psychiatrists help of course) The only problems he seems to have at school is his extremely negative self image and the impression that all the kids hate him. He will bang his head into walls, fall on the floor kicking and screaming, etc. And he's 11! Somebody please tell me I'm not the only one going through this. I've read so many books trying to figure out how to help him but I just get more and more frustrated when professional strategies fail to work with him. He goes from screaming "I hate you" to me one minute and then 10 minutes later is crying and apologizing. I'm at a loss and I need help. He sees a therapist twice a month in addition to the psychiatrist once a month, so please don't think I'm not actively seeking treatment for him. I just see his destructive behavior taking him down a dark path and I don't want that to happen to my baby.

How did you know your child had Bipolar disorder? Was their diagnosis an ADHD diagnosis at first? What meds have worked for you and what has not? What do you find works for you at home to help cut down on the number of meltdowns?

Thanks in advance for all your help! I really appreciate it! :)

05-27-13, 05:46 AM
I do not have bipolar children, but I am BP myself. What you are describing sounds like a bit more than bipolar. What does his treatment team think of his violence? How are his siblings coping with it. Its hard to divide our time as moms when 1 child seems to monopolize it all but the sad fact is the other kids will figure out that their brother, issues or not, manages to take all of mommy's time but being negative (even tho he cant help it) and at some point they will try the negative route for attention themselves. Are you in family therapy? It sounds like your other children would benefit from some time to discuss their fears and feelings. How violent is he with them or other people or you? Are you certain its just bipolar and nothing else? Has he ever acted violent towards you?

08-18-13, 04:59 PM
Hi Jennifer, my sister has a 12 year old girl that is very similar to your situation. She acts better with her dad and excels at school and in that environment, but is a bear to deal with when she is at home, with her mom, or around siblings and in other settings and situations.

She also had very violent tendancies towards her sibling, and would try to jump out of windows, throw tantrums and on and on and on. She is finally on a good treatment plan, and seems to be doing better, but it's still stressfull since puberty is coming and the natural progression of hormones, and finding out how that will play in the scheme of things. Don't lose hope!

Anyway, I called my sister to ask her advice for you, and she suggested to check out the website NAMY. She was able to find some local resources & support groups for parents of bi-polar children. She also highly recommended the book The Bipolar Child.

I knew she was the person to call, since she thought her daughter was the only bi polar child that seemed to act this way. You are not alone.

My sister has found a local community of parents in your situation, and it's been a saving grace for her. They helped her find the right specialists for her situation, in her town too.

Alrigt, I'll shut up now. :p Your frustration sounded just like my sisters at one point and I just felt for you.

Hang in there