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Old 01-28-2016, 05:22 PM
 
1,779 posts, read 6,826,032 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reneeh63 View Post
I have personal experience with both bipolars (my dad was in and out of hospitals with multiple suicide attempts and suffered through many treatments including electroconvulsive shock therapy) major depression and SAD. I also have a master's in psychology. No one has ever seriously suggested that a vacation would have a lasting impact. In fact, 90% of people would not even have the finances to take a week's cruise - so not very practical for the majority of people.

BTW, a SAD light costs less than a $100 and only takes about 30 min. of exposure a day...worth a try? Nope - just reject it as you have pretty much all the advice you've received here.
It's good advice, but for you to think you can usurp a licensed therapist who has worked in person is pretty presumptuous. Also you are fixated on one small aspect you seem to find unappealing and more concerned about scoring points. I don't think anyone ever thought a vacation would be some sort of cure. Not sure where you got that idea. But again a SAD light is a pretty good idea. Surprising neither her therapist or psychiatrist have really mentioned it.
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Old 01-28-2016, 06:25 PM
 
6,013 posts, read 2,697,304 times
Reputation: 5215
Coolcats


I think the cruise is a good idea. It probably wont provide long term solutions, but at least it will give everyone a break for a time from the recent stress.


From what you have said, reading between the lines, I am getting that your wife is seeing a psychiatrist basically to get her meds and have them monitored. But, that she is not seeing anyone for any kind of "talk" therapy.


If that's correct, I'm going to suggest that you try to find a psychiatrist that can provide both and that if you can swing it you get your wife in twice a week. I know its not as common anymore, but they are still out there.


Also, if the current doc is not getting the meds right to level your wife out, you consider seeking another doc. Start by asking if the current doc has a supervisor.


If you could find and get your wife involved in any kind of on-line or in person support group for depression/bipolar that might help. It helps both to know that there are people worse than she is that are still surviving and also to get suggestions from people who have overcome their illness and are thriving.


Finally, can you swing a nanny or even part time help to come in and provide a buffer between your wife and your children until things improve.


Hang in there and consider seeking therapy yourself to help you navigate this. Yes you need to protect your children, but if at all possible you need to also protect and help their mother until she is able to do it herself.


I don't have a clear picture of what her state of mind is currently, but if she ever has stable or calm moments, perhaps you should have a conversation with her about living separately until she can find meds that work. Doesn't mean she cant come to dinner at the family home or that you don't see her etc. Just some space for everyone.
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Old 01-28-2016, 06:52 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,305 posts, read 10,048,458 times
Reputation: 20460
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolcats View Post
I need to do a better job of talking with her about this. I mean yes, we have talked about it, but it hasn't seemed "heart-to-heart". But that's on me to improve on.

Regarding point two ... she doesn't have someone she could stay with long-term. But I did arrange for her to stay with her friend for a week in mid-February. It's just her friend and friend's mom because the dad in that family passed away a year ago. My mother-in-law, who isn't a super role-model, but at least stable and generous enough is going to watch the other kids. My wife and I are going on a cruise. I figure it will be a beneficial break for everyone involved.
Are you for real? Like seriously? You're rewarding your wife with a cruise?

Honestly, neither one of you is a parent and you don't deserve children. Your job as a parent is to protect your children! You are FAILING in epic proportions.

Your kids are counting the days when they can get the hell away from both of you. Don't kid yourself. You are NOT taking care of any of those children.

I mean come on. Your daughter has straight A's, does chores, helps with her siblings, etc and you think she's the problem? Denial is your middle name!

Magically, you don't have the money for more therapy or hospitalization yet you find thousands for a cruise? You have some major issues with your priorities.

Damn, I feel for those kids with parents like you two! They are doomed and they don't know how to help themselves.

I grew up with a mother who has more mental issues than Carter's has pills. She's been on and off meds my whole life. There was loads of mental, verbal, and physical abuse. I couldn't wait until I turned 18. I'm in my 40's and she still pitches a fit when she can't control what I do. The only abuse that has ended was the physical abuse because her arms aren't long enough to reach 3 hours away. I've relocated a few times and each time I never once thought of going back to the area I grew up in. She's there. It's not safe until she's dead.

I have no relationship with her nor do I want one. My days of being burdened by her are over. If she kicked the bucket tomorrow, I have no interest in attending a memorial service or funeral. None. Do you want that for your children?
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Old 01-28-2016, 06:58 PM
 
1,779 posts, read 6,826,032 times
Reputation: 958
Quote:
Originally Posted by ss20ts View Post
Are you for real? Like seriously? You're rewarding your wife with a cruise?

Honestly, neither one of you is a parent and you don't deserve children. Your job as a parent is to protect your children! You are FAILING in epic proportions.

Your kids are counting the days when they can get the hell away from both of you. Don't kid yourself. You are NOT taking care of any of those children.

I mean come on. Your daughter has straight A's, does chores, helps with her siblings, etc and you think she's the problem? Denial is your middle name!

Magically, you don't have the money for more therapy or hospitalization yet you find thousands for a cruise? You have some major issues with your priorities.

Damn, I feel for those kids with parents like you two! They are doomed and they don't know how to help themselves.

I grew up with a mother who has more mental issues than Carter's has pills. She's been on and off meds my whole life. There was loads of mental, verbal, and physical abuse. I couldn't wait until I turned 18. I'm in my 40's and she still pitches a fit when she can't control what I do. The only abuse that has ended was the physical abuse because her arms aren't long enough to reach 3 hours away. I've relocated a few times and each time I never once thought of going back to the area I grew up in. She's there. It's not safe until she's dead.

I have no relationship with her nor do I want one. My days of being burdened by her are over. If she kicked the bucket tomorrow, I have no interest in attending a memorial service or funeral. None. Do you want that for your children?
Uh ... I had free airfare, and paid $600 for the both of us. Your issues are clouding your judgment, which is highly judgmental. You have no idea my financial situation. I can afford to pay $600 for a week. I can afford to pay $10,000 for my high deductible health plan. I can't afford to pay $1,000 a day indefinitely.

Check your ill-informed condemnation at the door and do something productive.
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Old 01-28-2016, 06:59 PM
 
2,937 posts, read 1,661,517 times
Reputation: 6644
What is your wife doing all day? Is it possible you can get her into a day treatment program in your area?
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Old 01-28-2016, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in America
12,305 posts, read 10,048,458 times
Reputation: 20460
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolcats View Post
Uh ... I had free airfare, and paid $600 for the both of us. Your issues are clouding your judgment, which is highly judgmental. You have no idea my financial situation. I can afford to pay $600 for a week. I can afford to pay $10,000 for my high deductible health plan. I can't afford to pay $1,000 a day indefinitely.

Check your ill-informed condemnation at the door and do something productive.
That's money you could put towards counseling sessions for your wife or children. You admit she's not in counseling now. She needs help so do the kids.

And no the issues with my mother aren't clouding my judgment. I know what it's like to be in your daughter's shoes. It's hell. And you're in complete denial. I feel for your kids.....no one is protecting them.
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Old 01-28-2016, 07:11 PM
 
13,008 posts, read 12,440,016 times
Reputation: 37270
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondy View Post
Coolcats


I think the cruise is a good idea. It probably wont provide long term solutions, but at least it will give everyone a break for a time from the recent stress.


From what you have said, reading between the lines, I am getting that your wife is seeing a psychiatrist basically to get her meds and have them monitored. But, that she is not seeing anyone for any kind of "talk" therapy.


If that's correct, I'm going to suggest that you try to find a psychiatrist that can provide both and that if you can swing it you get your wife in twice a week. I know its not as common anymore, but they are still out there.


Also, if the current doc is not getting the meds right to level your wife out, you consider seeking another doc. Start by asking if the current doc has a supervisor.


If you could find and get your wife involved in any kind of on-line or in person support group for depression/bipolar that might help. It helps both to know that there are people worse than she is that are still surviving and also to get suggestions from people who have overcome their illness and are thriving.


Finally, can you swing a nanny or even part time help to come in and provide a buffer between your wife and your children until things improve.


Hang in there and consider seeking therapy yourself to help you navigate this. Yes you need to protect your children, but if at all possible you need to also protect and help their mother until she is able to do it herself.


I don't have a clear picture of what her state of mind is currently, but if she ever has stable or calm moments, perhaps you should have a conversation with her about living separately until she can find meds that work. Doesn't mean she cant come to dinner at the family home or that you don't see her etc. Just some space for everyone.
Actually, based on my own experiences dealing with my depression, I'm not sure a vacation is a good idea at all. A cruise is not reality. It's an artificial environment that will temporarily delay the mundanity of everyday life.

When I am coaching myself through a depression or a period of deep anxiety, I do not "think happy thoughts" as some people have suggested that I do. I think boring thoughts. I think about folding laundry and grocery shopping and doing dishes. Stupid, routine, boring stuff so that I don't bring myself too high and then get a gut punch when I focus on reality and bring myself swinging back down from that upturn. Or I meditate and push things out of my brain so that I feel peaceful.

If this woman is only intermittently taking her medication and she goes away on a fun-filled trip, only to come back to the same reality and routine that she complained about, I actually think it could be kind of disastrous. Remember that when the therapist suggested this, there was an assumption that she would be taking her meds and continuing her therapy.

I'm sorry, but mom is an adult and she is making bad and selfish choices. Her daughter is at a vulnerable age and is being torn down systematically by one of the people who is supposed to protect her and support her the most (not to mention what the other kids are feeling!). Plus, dad is acting like she just needs to take her mother's abuse. I have seen people destroyed by this kind of behavior from their parents. This is a good kid who is going to lash out at the unfairness in her life very soon - pregnancy, drugs, risky behaviors, to say nothing of depression and self-harm, are all on the table in this kind of situation when a kid feels unloved, isolated and devalued by her parents.

It's a crappy situation for the OP to be in, but prioritizing his wife's welfare over that of his children is unacceptable since this is a far worse situation for the kids. If his wife was a drug addict, nobody would be saying the kids would just have to cope with her damaging behavior until she gets back on track. And like a drug addict, she needs to make the choice to get better.
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Old 01-28-2016, 07:25 PM
 
6,013 posts, read 2,697,304 times
Reputation: 5215
You cant just make the choice to get better if you are in the depths of a clinical depression or an extremely high phase of a manic episode.


Even therapy is not helpful in either of these phases because you are not capable of participating in the therapy. In both, but especially a manic phase, you may not even be capable of rational thought.


Its not as simple as getting a grip and "coaching" yourself through.


If you survive either of these episodes and can get to a place of stability then yes you have to learn these skills to keep yourself stable. It doesn't sound like coolcats wife has been able to achieve that yet. In which case, yes a reprieve from even having to try can be useful especially if you are still being subjected to the very inexact science of modern meds some of which for both phases of this illness have truly horrible side effects for many people.
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Old 01-28-2016, 07:43 PM
 
Location: Warren, OH
2,704 posts, read 3,132,006 times
Reputation: 6258
Quote:
Originally Posted by JONOV View Post
You're making excuses for your wife. A 14 year old developing an attitude isn't exactly noteworthy; its what they do. Handling a kid with an attitude is part and parcel of adolescent parenting. This would be a normal reaction to your wife getting on her case about hanging out with boys, her clothing, or cleaning her room. That your wife is emotionally abusive to her makes it all the less surprising.

This sounds really mean, but when you had kids, they became first priority. Your wife and marriage is certainly important, but NOT at the expense of your kids health and well being (not happiness, health and well being; JR doesn't have to play travel soccer if the expenses or schedule causes undue stress.) If your wife was a mean drunk or an addict, you wouldn't have these reservations. Your wife can't help the way she is, but that doesn't really matter now, does it? It isn't your kids fault, and the fact that your wife can't help it doesn't mean that the kids should live in that environment. You think it isn't affecting the other ones. It probably doesn't affect the 2 year old (yet.) The 4 year old? Hard to say. The 12 year old? Just because he is conflict avoidant doesn't mean that you aren't setting him up for a lot of issues.

I don't think he is making excuses for his wife. If his wife had cancer, she (the wife) might suffer from depression, nit pick, and be argumentative.

She would have to learn too deal with some of the psychological affects of her mother's disorder. Becides the physical effects. The daughter also needs to develop some compassion. I would start by making sure that the daughter stop holing up in her room.

The reality is, your daughter has two parents. The OP is not mentally ill, but the mother is. That's the fact. And it could be worse. Teenagers often think that everyone's family is perfect or normal. I am sure that she has friends with one parent, or a step parent, or a parent who drinks, or financial problems -or several of these problems.

I am glad that your daughter is seeing a therapist. She needs to learn how to treat her mother with BPD. Because THAT is the mother she has. It's a reality that she needs to learn. Is it fair? No. But life isn't fair.

If boarding school is a possibility, I would look into it. It would give them respite from one another.
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Old 01-28-2016, 07:44 PM
 
2,937 posts, read 1,661,517 times
Reputation: 6644
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondy View Post
You cant just make the choice to get better if you are in the depths of a clinical depression or an extremely high phase of a manic episode.


Even therapy is not helpful in either of these phases because you are not capable of participating in the therapy. In both, but especially a manic phase, you may not even be capable of rational thought.


Its not as simple as getting a grip and "coaching" yourself through.


If you survive either of these episodes and can get to a place of stability then yes you have to learn these skills to keep yourself stable. It doesn't sound like coolcats wife has been able to achieve that yet. In which case, yes a reprieve from even having to try can be useful especially if you are still being subjected to the very inexact science of modern meds some of which for both phases of this illness have truly horrible side effects for many people.
Obviously, that's why when a person hits that high or low they usually end up in the hospital because either their meds aren't working and need a change or they're not taking their meds and need to be stabilized.

Once that happens you start the intensive therapy.
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