Silka - posted on 06/09/2010 ( 3 moms have responded )
My daughter was diagnosed with Bipolar when she was 13. The past several years have gotten progressively worse as she get's older. She has been on several different medications, and has seen a therapist and a psychiatirist for over a year now. Her ups and downs go in seasons, but I am at such a loss as to what to do with her right now I just need some advice. Sorry if this get's long and if it is very scattered.
In January my daughter basically gave up on school. She had been attending an alternative high school for over a year because she could not handle traditional high school (she both refused to wake up in the morning due to her insomnia, and refused to do homework). Her alternative school was wonderful, very patient with her, her school hours were from 1:30pm to 6:30pm, and they had a no homework policy, just small class sized and worked with the students to get their work done in class. I thought it was a God send. But sure enough, she got tired of it and started ditching. Then she just started to flat out refuse to go. At first I was driving her (45 minutes from our home) to this school and had to rearrange my work schedule to get her there each day, and picking her up at night which was also a major inconvenience since I have two other children waiting for dinner, but I was doing it for her and every day I would watch her go in to school, and walk out the front door after school when I picked her up. Then a week later I would get an email from her teacher saying they haven't seen her all week. I was so frusterated with her. She was also being disrespectful at home, she outwardly hates my husband, her step-dad. He has a very hard time with her and wishes she would just go to jail or move out.
Last month she got into a fight with him in the kitchen and he ended up slapping her because she was so out of control and trying to fight him, then she comes crying to me to call the cops on him for abuse, when she abuses us constantly! I had her go stay with her grandma for a few days. Grandma thought she would force her to go to school by escorting her to her classes. On the third day of that my daughter threatened to throw herself out of the car while it was going 65 on the highway because she did not want to go to school so much. Grandma called the cops, cops took my daughter to an inpatient behavioral health hospital where she stayed for two weeks. It seemed to help a little. They changed her meds from just Lithium to Lithium and Seroquel.
I tried in vain to make her return to school after she was released from the hospital, but again she just went right back to ditching so I gave up and insisted she get a job. In the mean time the principal of her school calls me to inform me they are reporting her to truancy court and there is a chance that they will arrest ME due to neglect! I was shocked! I have done everything in my power imaginable to help my daughter. I love her with all my heart but she is tearing apart my family.
Three weeks ago she went into my purse while I was sleeping and stole $100, then snuck out her bedroom window and just returned today. While she was gone I received a few text messages that she was ok, moved out of state with a boy, was happy and had no intentions of coming home (as soon as the day before yesterday). I had no choice but to call the police and report her as a runaway. Then out of the blue she calls me today saying she is 15 minutes away from my house, has no money to get home, had no other choice but to call me because she is stranded. When I picked her up she was not remorseful, just defensive. Said she was sorry, but not heartfelt. Said that she was in Utah, even though I can not see how she could have possibly been there and gotten back home so fast. She said she came back to visit friends, but they kicked her out. She did not take her pills with her when she left so she has now been off her meds for 3 weeks cold turkey. She actually told me that she was earning money pan-handling downtown! We are not wealthy, but she comes from a good home!
My husband is livid that she has come back. I am sitting here in the living room, she is in her room in the basement and he is upstairs in our bedroom because they refuse to see each other. I feel guilty because the past 3 weeks without her here has been peaceful and fun and relaxed for all of us because she was not here causing drama.
I truly deeply love her, but she is so darn unlovable right now. I am not sure if I should hurry and make her an appointment with her therapist and have her start taking her meds again. I just do not know what to do. My biggest fear is that she will never actually grow up and become an adult. I know that teen stuff is temporary, but she is going to have a permanent criminal record before she gets the chance to mature.
Is this typical Bipolar behavior? I mean, can anyone relate to any of this or is this just over the top? I am beside myself with her. I have a 12 year old son that is an honor student, a 2 year old daughter that is a total sweet pea, and I am pregnant with my last (my husbands second). I couldn't possibly have my hands more full. I have looked into boot camps and boarding schools but they are all way way too expensive unless she commits a crime and is court ordered to go there. Thanks for letting me vent to this group and if anyone can shed any tiny ray of hope I really need to hear something positive right now. Thanks!