My Teenage Bipolar Years


After my breakdown, my parents’ started to get me therapy. I didn’t last long because my father didn’t appreciate the therapist pointing out his drinking problem or the fact that my parents’ used me in their tug of war match. So after just a few sessions, therapy was over for me and I was left to deal on my own. The therapist’s remarks didn’t stop my parent’s behavior of course and I was still being used as their pawn in their little game. At some point, I refused to play along and just began playing by my own rules.

I went from being an honor roll student to a child who was barely passing her classes. Much like when they didn’t acknowledge my honor roll status, they didn’t acknowledge my failing status either. What I didn’t realize at the time was I had gone manic and not only was I having breakdowns at home and failing school, but I was ruining friendships as well. Good friendships, people I had known most of my life. I was known as the trouble maker in school and was getting into a lot of fights and then…..the hypersexuality kicked in. That was the hardest part to overcome as an adult. I was called all sorts of names and at the time everyone thought I was seeking the love and attention I wasn’t getting at home. In part, that may be true, but knowing now what I know combined with everything else, I wasn’t just a teenager acting out, I was bipolar and there was no one to get me help. I was fighting constantly with my Mom and when I wasn’t fighting with her I was locking myself in my room to avoid her. When she’d get ready to go out drinking, I’d sigh in relief because it meant I didn’t have to deal with her anymore.

I began sneaking out and going to parties and ruining even more friendships along the way. People just didn’t understand I was sick and I wasn’t meaning to hurt them, it was just happening. I needed someone to save me and instead everyone was walking out of my life and leaving me alone.

I remember one summer, I was all alone, most of my friendships severed. I sat alone, crying out of desperation. I had never felt this kind of feeling before. It was like everything around me had turned black and the darkness was closing in on me. I realized I had no one to help me and no one was there for me and all I wanted to do was die. I called a friend, one of the only ones’ I had left and cried to her. She didn’t know what to say as most kids don’t and she didn’t know if I was serious so it was ignored. I don’t blame her for this. She just had no clue what to do to help me.

That would be the very first time I would attempt suicide. It’s hard for me to keep my attempts in order. I know what I’ve done. But I believe this was the time I tried to overdose on my mom’s sleeping pills. When I told her and my guidance counselor at school, they both ignored it and again brushed it under the rug. I was put in some class for children with alcoholic parents and troubled homes and that was the end of it. When in reality I should have been taken to the hospital.

I can’t urge you enough, if you have a child crying out for help to get them the help they need. Hiding it will only make it worse and they will only suffer longer.

Until next time….

Becca♥

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Good Night


Our day was quite uneventful. We have a houseful of people with the flu and when I say a houseful, I mean that. There are 5 out of the 8 people who live here that are sick. It has not been fun at all. I’m hoping I wake tomorrow to a better day with everyone as that will free me up a little to blog more than I have been.

Hubs had a meeting with J’s teachers’ today and he will be placed in the Special Education program. I am thrilled about this as he really needs the extra help. He is struggling in his classes and becomes quite frustrated when the work is too hard. He’s been on his Adderall for almost a week now and I can already see a difference in him. All I want for him is to do the very best he can and succeed in whatever it is he is meant to succeed in.

We also had our couples therapy tonight. I am also thrilled that we have started to go. It feels like a safe environment to discuss the things that are bothering us most. Even if we do end up sitting in awkward silence once in a while. It is good for our marriage, even though we have a pretty strong relationship, there’s no reason why we can’t work to make it stronger.

I hope somewhere, somehow my blogged touched someone today and helped someone out in their time of difficulty. It always makes me know that I’m not doing this in vain when I know I am helping others.

Until next time…..

Becca♥

Therapy? Is It Important?


In simple terms, yes. I believe everyone could benefit from a good friend to talk to, someone they can bounce things off of, someone who can give them advice and direct them in the best place possible. But we can get all those things from friends’ we don’t have to pay, right? Wrong!

Friends are great to have, but it’s really not fair to them or their own mental well-being if we are constantly bogging them down with our troubles. They may feel at some point that they can no longer help you and their voices become quiet or they only half listen to what we need to blab about. I have one friend that whenever I call her and need to talk something out, she starts blubbering about all the wrongs in her own life. I’ve come to understand that this is probably just her way of letting me know she relates to my situation or understands to an extent what I’m going through. However, this type of conversation leaves me feeling as though my situation isn’t as important as her’s. It minimizes what I’m going through and leaves me feeling frustrated.

A therapist can listen objectively and see things from a different angle than a friend can. They can view what you are going through without being part of the entire situation. Some things that you need to vent about can be done under the safety of confidentiality and therefore you can’t be blamed for gossiping or talking about people behind their backs. Speaking with a therapist can help you in all areas of your life and it can be done under the protection of privacy.

My biggest issue with therapy is finding the right one. Currently I am not in therapy. I’ve gone through two different therapists in the past year. I don’t feel comfortable enough to open up completely with either of them. One just liked to sit and listen. She didn’t give any feedback and if she did, it wasn’t very helpful. After a few months of sessions with her, I was more annoyed than when I first started seeing her. I needed help, direction, guidance, homework….I needed her to give me the feedback and she just wasn’t able to.

The other therapist listened to what I had to say, gave me direction and homework, but there was still problems. She liked to point out my failures and didn’t help me to overcome those failures or how to not make the same mistake. Her view on medication was much different then mine as well. I believe that in order to overcome Bipolar Disorder one must be properly (not overly) medicated first. If you are swinging between the poles, not an ounce of therapy is going to help. Once medication has stabilized you, learning coping skills and strategies can come into play. When your mind is clear, it’s easier to process this information and then the reduction of dosages may be an option. This is not for everyone and it’s just my own person view-point about medications and therapy.

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Until I get funding for continued care, any thought of going back to therapy is off the list. I must get the funding first before I can even begin to look for another therapist. That said, I intend to interview prospective therapists that are going to take my insurance. I want to make sure that the therapist I see let’s me be me. There are moments where I can be a bit abrasive and aggressive, not towards the therapist, but in the way I speak. I don’t want a therapist that isn’t going to allow me to speak my mind. Another thing that’s important to me is that the therapist knows how and when to take direction of our therapy sessions. That she doesn’t just let me prattle about my week and end the session with a pat on my back. There are certain areas of my life that need work and I want the therapist I’m seeing to be able to work hard with me on those areas. And darn it! I want homework.

Homework means that I have a goal I need to accomplish throughout the week. It means I have something to work on and I’ll have someone holding me accountable at the end of the week. This plays into part of the structure and routine that I like to have in my life. I like having goals, especially if those goals are set by someone else. It puts the pressure into action for me to get done what’s expected of me.

Not all of this will work for you. These are just some things I look for in a therapist. I really think CBT would work wonders for me.

Until Next Time…..

Becca♥

Nervous!!


I’m soooo nervous about today!

I crashed sometime around 5:30pm or 6pm last night and woke up about an hour ago. Now I’ll be awake all day *sigh*. I hate the way my sleep fluctuates. It’s one of the things I’m hoping they can help me fix by going inpatient.

I think I made the right decision. I need time to put all the good advice I give everyone, to use in my own life. I found the place I’ll be going to online and was able to read what their program is about. It sounds exactly like what I need!

It offers individual and group therapy during the day. Meal times are family style and it’s up to you to make and cleanup your own meals. Family can come visit each evening (I can smoke outside! YAY!), there are arts and crafts (yucky), but I can do puzzles too if I wish (Yay!). There’s also free time where I can talk with counselors, do self-help worksheets, read, write in my journal and get this……I get to bring my laptop! You may actually hear from me if I’m not too busy with the other stuff.

I wish we had a book store close by. I’d stop off and buy a book on the way, so I had something good to read while I wasn’t busy. But all our bookstores closed down (thank you Amazon!). Maybe I’ll stop at Target, see what they have and maybe get a search word book or some other activity book to keep me busy. I like to cross stitch, but I imagine needles aren’t allowed. I’ll be able to find out from the mobile team more of what I’m allowed in just a few hours. They will be here around 11:30am or after to discuss all this with me.Then Friday, provided there are no emergencies that need my bed space, I’ll go in. David will come home from girlfriend’s tomorrow night so he can say goodbye to me and then be here to watch the kids so Hubs can take me on Friday. I don’t know how much visiting time I’ll get with Hubs. David has a birthday and graduation party to go to this weekend, so he won’t be able to babysit, so I probably won’t see Hubs for 3 days. That’s okay. It may be a little of what I need. A break from everyone. A chance to regroup.

This place may be able to help with housing resources too. They know I have a pdoc, so I hope they will work a little with him if need be. I can take my meds with me, but they will remain locked up. I just hope they don’t lock up my journal. I need that to keep myself grounded sometimes.

Well….I’m nervous now, but I’m sure I won’t sleep at all tomorrow night, so you’ll hear more from me then,.

Until next time…..

Becca ♥

Depression – A Clinical View


On the Threshold of Eternity

On the Threshold of Eternity (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

I think we all know we can google depression and come up with tons of articles about it. I gave my own personal account of what it’s like for me here at Sneaky Devil. But I don’t think it hurts to go over the basics a little bit and touch on them. You never know when someone may stumble upon my site and this is what they are looking for.

Depression is often described as feeling sad, unhappy, down in the dumps or miserable, but it’s more than that. It’s like you are stuck at the bottom of the ocean with cinder blocks strapped to your feet and no one is coming to save you. Yes, it truly is that bad. It’s like someone has ripped your heart out of your chest and stomped on it right in front of your face! Some of us only feel like this for short periods in our lives and for others’ it’s a life long, chronic condition. No one knows the exact cause as to why Depression happens. Research suggests it has to do with changes in the chemicals in our brains.

Some types of depression can run in families, but it can also occur with no family history being involved. Anyone can have it, even children. (I intend on doing a post on depression in adolescents. It’s more common than you think).

There are certain things that can contribute to depressions. These are:

  • Alcohol
  • Drug Abuse
  • Medical Conditions – under active thyroid, cancer, long-term pain
  • steroids
  • Sleep Problems


There are also certain life events that can contribute or trigger a depressive episode. These are:

  • A breakup – This doesn’t have to be just with a boyfriend or girlfriend. It could be a breakup of any relationship. Possibly a friendship lost or a break in contact with other family members.
  • Divorce
  • Failing a class or getting fired from your job
  • Death or illness of someone close to you
  • Childhood Abuse or neglect
  • Social Isolation (especially in the elderly)

These are just a few examples of some of the things that can trigger depression.

Symptoms of Depression

  • Agitations, Restlessness, irritability
  • Drastic change in appetite – dramatic weight gain or loss
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Fatigue – no energy
  • Feeling helpless or hopeless
  • Feeling worthless, self-hatred, guilt
  • Isolation (you really want to avoid this)
  • Loss of interest in things you once enjoyed
  • Sleep issues
  • Talking about or thoughts about death or suicide

*If severe depression is left untreated it can lead to psychosis in the patient* 

There are many treatment options available to those suffering with depression. Medications, called antidepressants are a place to start. There are several kinds that you can try. Many people do not respond to the first medication they are prescribed. It’s important to note that it can take 4 to 6 weeks after starting a new medication or a dosage increase for you to feel the full effect. Some people feel better within a few weeks, other’s even after treatment don’t feel better for 6 months or more. That’s why it is important to also go to therapy and work on some of your depression issues there. Therapists are trained to give you the coping skills you need to get through depression. It is up to you if you want to use those skills or not.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please do not hesitate to call 911, your local crisis hotline or go to the nearest Emergency Room. Suicide may seem like the only way out, but that is your depression lying to you. There is help and it will get better!