Day 91- Reality

If you are bipolar, stay single. Maybe find a hospice. But that’s it!

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30 thoughts on “Day 91- Reality

      • How have you been dealing with being a parent? I’ve always wanted a child. Just didn’t want him/her to have my conditions and suffer. Or not get the best upbringing coz I am incapable.

      • That’s a really good question, but not an easy one to answer. I wasn’t diagnosed until after my third son. I had postpartum depression with my first two and postpartum psychosis with my third. Would I have still had children if I had known about my Bipolar beforehand? I don’t know. I was raised Mormon so there is a lot of pressure for women to grow up, get married, and have children in that culture. It’s like your sole defining purpose in life as a woman. And one I resent. Don’t get me wrong, I love and cherish my boys and I do NOT regret them for a second. What I resent is the expectation of being nothing more than that. I fucking hate that part. I am still me with feelings, dreams, needs, and thoughts of my own.

        As for being a parent with Bipolar, the first priority is keeping yourself stable at all costs. If you can’t do that then you’re no good to your kids. Genetically speaking as someone with Bipolar, you have a 50% chance of giving your child a serious mental disorder. That’s if only one parent is Bipolar. If both parents are Bipolar the chances rise to 75% I believe.

        There are genetic counselors out there that can discuss the risks for you and your partner specifically. All three of my children have different fathers. All three of them ended up special needs. My oldest is Bipolar. My middle son is Autistic. My youngest is currently diagnosed with Conduct Disorder and Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (pediatric Bipolar basically). BUT not every Bipolar parent ends up with the chaos I have. I just have a rather “interesting” genetic pool to work with for one and it seems I am drawn to the unusual sort of people to date. In my life it really is a case of “birds of a feather flock together” I’m afraid.

        So if you decide that you want to become a parent, you have to commit to being stable. And I mean 100% commit. You don’t get to take a day off from the planning and working around your illness ever again. You have to plan ahead and you have to have a support system in place. What happens with your child if you need to go to the hospital? You have to plan for that before it happens. Who takes care of you and your child when you are depressed or hypo/manic? All of those things need to be in place before any of that happens. Because it WILL happen. We all know it does. It’s the nature of being Bipolar. And the more you have planned out ahead of time, the easier it is to being a parent – hell the easier it is just being Bipolar as I have discovered.

        I hope this doesn’t freak you out and that it answers at least some of your questions? Being a parent with Bipolar IS possible. I feel that while it is a lot of work, it’s also the most rewarding thing I have ever done. I do not regret it for a second. These boys are my world and I am happy to have them in my life.

      • Thank you so so much. This was so unbelievably useful. I guess then I shouldn’t be a parent, atleast not now. I have no support system and I’m quite sure I’ll slip up. Given that I am living in India, I understand the cultural implications of just being born to create a family. Sadly after a lot of issues I broke off from mine. Atleast till I can accept them.
        Unfortunately hospitalization isn’t very easy here. And definitely not without support.
        Thank you so much once again.
        I’m so impressed with how you manage things. Esp with 3 kids with special needs.
        You are really really amazing! Hats off to you.

      • Thank you BUT I will say it’s largely due to my incredibly amazing family that I have. I have sister that is a psych nurse and a mother that has worked both in nursing homes and in emergency care. My father was in the military so he has this “no man left behind” mindset with his family. So combine that with the Mormon belief that family is everything and forever, I am truly blessed. I think I would have been screwed if I had been born into a different family with different values.

        But I have seen this work for other families with the right community supports in place. They say it takes a village to raise a child. I believe that. Sometimes it just means that we have to build and define our village. I mean I certainly wouldn’t be able to do all what I do without the help of the hospital team the boys and I go to. We all go to the same hospital. I’m grateful I found one with a pediatric wing and an adult wing in one building for mental health care.

        I make mistakes and slip up. No one is perfect. In fact parenting is the least perfect thing you will ever do in life. N child ever comes with an instruction manual. No two children are ever alike. And just when you think you have it all figured out, that’s when it all changes. πŸ˜‰ Kids are awesome like that. Even normal parents of normal kids will tell you that. It’s like a universal law of parenting.

      • Hahaha.. So true. And yes I agree with the village to raise a child saying. And yes we get to define our village. But currently I’m barely myself. No family or village. Hehe…
        Kudos to your family for being who they are. I’m so happy for you. And so very inspired. Thank you πŸ™‚ When you have such a positive approach, I’m sure good things will happen to you.

  1. I had a series of nightmarish relationships, but when I stopped looking I found “the one.” We’ve been married for ten years and while I know I’d survive him, I hope I never have to. I choose to be in this relationship because I love him, but not because I need him. There is a big difference.

  2. I’m blessed to have a spouse who supports me unconditionally. He’s my best friend and love of my life. Bipolar or not, I think everyone has someone like that. It’s a matter of fate to finding them or not.

    • πŸ™‚ I had… My abused childhood changed my equation with my husband. Made it platonic. He cared for me like a child through my mental crash. But I can’t be non platonic with him. So… Ex husband now.
      I’m seeing someone now. I love him but it’s very volatile. And i over estimated my abilities. I’m realising that only now, after a year.
      So happy for you and your husband. Wish you both all the happiness in the world. An eternity of awesomeness! πŸ™‚

      • Thanks. Sorry to hear it didn’t work out with you and your husband. Sounds like he helped you when you needed it though. I know the feeling of overestimating my abilities. Sometimes the only way to find out my limits is to test them.

      • He still does. He is my best friend. He is family. I’m really lucky to have met him πŸ™‚
        Testing out my abilities now. In a relationship with an amazing guy now. He has bipolar tendencies too. And I exhaust him with my disabilities. πŸ™‚

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