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Bipolar Disorder

I have been struggling with Bipolar Disorder since I was about 12 years old and I have just now (at age 27) found a medication that seems to help me control it. My mother has severe OCD and my grandmother suffered a mental break when I was 3 or so (my mom said that she had to go into a mental hospital for a few days) I myself have been in a mental hospital after a failed suicide attempt.

My concern is that I may have passed "mental illness" to my own daughter and I was wondering if anyone knew what signs I should be looking for and if 4 yrs old is too young to even be showing signs.

Any help at all would be appreciated. Please no bashing


Asked by Lucky209 at 12:33 PM on Mar. 14, 2011 in Health

Level 28 (35,060 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (11)
  • My sons Bipolar and really no one saw signs in him until he got a little older. They did misdiagnose him with ADHD and later ODD and in reality it was Bipolar disorder. When he was around in 3rd grade is when he started being what seemed like angry, like a soda bottle that held it in then exploded basically. He was also what most though was hyper, in reality his thinking was all over the place and he was manic. Just keep an eye on it, if she starts showing little behavior problems go to the doctor and explain your concern.

    Answer by gemgem at 12:36 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • There are certainly some mental illnesses that have a genetic predisposition. I would talk to your doctor about your concerns and hopefully they will give an idea of what to look for and when so your daughter can receive the best support possible to help her live with any mi she might face.

    Remember, she might be just fine though. :)

    Answer by Nonoluna at 12:36 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • You are doing the best thing you can already, which is being aware and educating yourself. I am the first person in my family who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. My mother had no idea what was happening in my teen years, thought I was "crazy" and treated me as such. I know/knew much better what to look for in my children, unfortunately, my daughter shows the same signs that I did when I was young. When she was a preschooler and in grade school what we found was that she got very angry and raged, then went into an extreme sadness. She has ADHD, which complicates the matter.
    My personal experience has allowed me to help my child so much more than my mother was able to help me. I feel as though I am able to be much more compassionate and empathize with her.
    Hugs to you and your daughter.

    Answer by catsmom1993 at 11:07 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • luvmygrlz

    Answer by luvmygrlz at 12:38 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • Talk to your doc and your child's doc too... they should be able to give you some guidance!! Puberty is one time I know of to be super vigilant... changing hormone levels can have an affect on behavior.


    Answer by Crafty26 at 12:39 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • I was also misdiagnosed several times @gemgem....they told my mom I had everything from some kind of rage disorder, a learning disability to nothing being wrong with me at all...that's another thing I'm afraid of, the doctors telling me that my daughter is fine when she really isnt

    Comment by Lucky209 (original poster) at 12:39 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • I was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder at 13 and my family also has a history of mental illnesses, so I have the same worries. Knowledge is power so I suggest you Google it, read up, and talk to doctors. Here are some helpful links:


    Answer by amber710 at 12:42 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • Lucky then you are already a step ahead. Just keep an eye on things, and there are really good books at the library as well. I had one and cant remember the name now but it was all about Bipolar disorder in kids. Remember, you dont have to accept a doctors diagnosis either, you can demand more tests and second opinions.

    Answer by gemgem at 12:51 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • I was diagnosed at 19 with BPD, but I was treated for depression from age 7. I am no longer medicate because frankly it's all junk. My mother's entire side of the family has been treated for depression, schizophrenia, OCD, or BPD for generations. My husband has an anxiety issue as well as mild OCD and ADHD. We share similar fears to yours where our children are concerned. And my oldest has developed an anxiety issue as well. Your best line of defense in this case is a good offense. Get to know the illnesses you need to watch for - in your case I would focus on BPD first. Once you know what you're dealing with you will know better what to watch for in your child. MOST mental conditions need an external trigger and a genetic predisposition in order to develop, but not always.

    My personal suggestion is that you spend $10 and get yourself a copy of Bipolar Disorder for Dummies (I LOVE IT), it has a section for recognizing & kids.

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 2:50 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

  • I also suggest you look in to alternative treatments. For me, diet changes, meditation and breathing techniques have made a world of difference. Learning these alternative treatment options will not only help you, but will allow you to make them a part of raising your child. If you teach your child how to eat properly, meditate and breath through their issues before acting they will be better equip to deal with any illness they have in their future.

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 2:53 PM on Mar. 14, 2011

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