Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Introducing Mood 24/7, a new tool that helps you track your mood from day to day using your mobile phone. Try it today!

Thursday, February 19, 2009 memerry, Community Member, asks

Q: Adult son going down hill - need help please

I just found this website and will do a lot of reading soon, but I do have a question.  My 22 year old son was diagnosed as a child.  We've been dealing with bi-polar forever.  My mother was also bi-polar. 

My son lost 100 pounds last year which was wonderful.   He's already gained it all back in the last 6 months.  He became obsessive about his weight, now he's obsessive with food.  He does not work, he was laid off and the job market is horrible.  He did work part time.  He does not collect SSI.  He has become a room rat, PS3 is his life.    He doesn't get out much, but when he does, it's to go get food.  He has few friends if any.   Never really has though.   His on-line PS3 friends are his only friends.  He has a brother who is on SSI, with a cognitive disability.   They're friends but typical brothers.

When my bi-polar son turned 18, the psychiatrist asked if I would not come to the appointments any longer so my son can advocate for himself.   This was fine, I have not done so.  But I have had contact off an on with the counselors etc since then.  Recently I became concerned about him and called the counselors for help.  No one will return my phone calls.  My son says he has not signed any sheet of paper restricting contact.   My insurance pays for his meds and I have told the psychiatrist via voice mail that I need to discuss this with them.  Nothing - no call back - nothing.  I have also expressed my concern that he's in a funk, perhaps a depression, maybe undermedicated, maybe overmedicated....  He's on lithium, seroquel, goedon, klonopin.

Anti-psychs make him psychotic...anti-OCD's make him OCD.  He used to have panic attacks while on OCD meds. 

My first thought is his lithium level is low because of his weight gain.  He won't take a lithium level test, doesn't want to be responsible for the co-pay.   I'm sure I can talk him into it if I try really really hard.  He's always been quite functional and tends to be manic, not depressive.   Since the psychiatrists won't talk to me - you guys are it.  Any help out there?

Answer This
Answers (7)
John McManamy, Health Guide
2/21/09 3:31am

Hi, memerry. I can't even begin to imagine what you are going through. A few points:

 

Re confidentiality - your son's right to privacy is protected by professional ethics and law, but your son can waive that right, and as the one who provides him with a roof over his head and all the food he can eat you are in a position to get that waiver.

 

Mental illness is a FAMILY illness, not an individual illness. Clinicians need to have the family involved. If the clinicians treating your son are too stupid to see this, then you need to arrange for more sympathetic clinicians.

 

I can not emphasize this enough. Clinicians too stupid to appreciate family involvement should not be treating patients or clients.

 

Patients typically do not give clinicians a complete set of facts to work with. Family members are needed to fill in the blanks. Yes, your son needs private time with the people who treat him, but there are also times when you need to be in the room.

 

You have a lot of other issues to work out, but let's start with this one. And please feel free to ask more questions.

Reply
LifeontheIsland, Community Member
2/19/09 2:15pm

I'm so sorry that you are dealing with so much with your son. You are obviously a wonderful, loving mother.

 

HIPPA restricts you from being able to talk to your son's counselors and p-docs and I believe that is why they will not call you back.

 

Perhaps you could press the issue with your son and get him to have his lithium level checked, as well as press him to take better care of himself? I know that this is easier said than done.

 

When BP's are dealing with all the bad things that come with their illness, they can lose any ambition to care for themselves, and they can find comfort in escapism - like your son is doing with PS3. This could be his way of avoiding the pain he feels regarding his illness and his weight gain.

 

There are many family members of BP's here at this website. I know that my husband has his frustrations with my illness, as I am BP, and sometimes it really worries him and bothers him.

 

I have found a lot of comfort here. There are also experts that write articles that you may find comforting and educational.

 

I don't know if anything I've written is helpful, but I just wanted to write to you and tell you that you're not alone. We care.

 

Best of luck to you. Keep writing when you need to, there is always someone that will answer you and try to make you feel better. This is a great website.

 

~Cathy

 

 

Reply
Judith, Community Member
2/19/09 3:19pm

Hi and welcome to the site.  I'm new here too.

 

Sorry your son is having a tough time and you're unable to get answers.  With Bp (18 years), I too resort to seclusion and it makes me feel better.  I also have a 16 year old with moderate to severe Autism.  He is a room rat, as you called it. Gotta tell my hubby that phrase. lol : )

 

Well, as far as his condition, "if he is willing" have him agree to a medical power of attorney.  Here's a link to a form for it.  Look it over and see if it will help you.  When my baby turns 18, I will have to do the same or petition the court for it as he is not able to make that decision.

 

http://www.expertlaw.com/library/estate_planning/medical_power_of_attorney.html

 

I hope this helps you. Don't forget to get out and pamper yourself once in a while.  He needs you to be well too and doesn't want to make you unhappy.

 

Judi~

Reply
memerry, Community Member
2/19/09 7:11pm

Thanks for both of your answers.  You have good knowledge.  It's a good feeling

to talk to someone who knows exactly what we're going through. 

Reply
Bluemom, Community Member
4/ 6/09 10:12pm

Hi - you posted this 2 months back so I don't know if you'll see the answer.  Your son needs to fill out a release allowing the MD to speak to you.  Maybe you can get the MD office to fax or mail your son a blank release and then your son can sign it, and they will call you back.  My son is 34 with BP and back living at home.  I sure sympathize: it hurts like hell and you can't force him to do what's good for him.

Best of luck.

 

Reply
Chris, Community Member
5/ 8/09 5:26pm

This thread was really helpful to me today.

 

My son (age 22) has survived two major manias (hospializations) with his BP (in 2 years).  It is so frustrating not to be able to help him.  He won't stop pot use.  He is on a general decline (more alone time, less self-care, no motivation, horrible pot-head girlfriend) b/c the stigma, illness and pot combine to make him quite a mess.

 

It kills me b/c I had the diagnosis as young adult and was more cooperative w/ p-doc recommendations.  He is simply not taking their advice and I feel like calling them all the time.  Don't get me wrong--they encourage my husband and my participation--its just..hard to watch....

 

His therapist believes she sees better outcomes w/ patients whos's parents can manage to stay involved.

 

I go to a parent support group at the clinic every other week.  It rocks.

 

If anyone reads this out there in parent-land---have a great one.

 

Peace,

C

Reply
sweetsoul56, Community Member
1/ 6/10 4:05pm

I am pretty much in the same heart wrenching situation as u~

 

My son was EVICTED and now is homeless. It's killig me to see him suffer, but I am told NOT to enable him.  He is also Bipolar~

 

He stayed with us for the holidays and I have to say I was so relieved he left, not his doing, he is now visiting his brother out of state till this weekend and then the GUILT & MOURNING starts all over... our house was a mess and my Hubby & I were wrecks!!!  He is a total slob, hardly ever baths, etc. 

Has been fired from every single job cuz he can't get along with people.  And naturally blames everyone else...and NO he doen't think he is sick nor will he go get help!!

 

Any comforting words?

 

Warm regards,

sweetsoul56

 

Reply
vanessa, Community Member
4/17/11 7:59pm

hi everyone ,my son who is now 23 years old was diagnosis with being bi-polar and schizoaffective disorder.this all started two years ago. i have been having problem with getting him to take his medicine and even seeing a doctor. my husband who is his stepdad that raised him.doesnt want him around when his in a manic state of mind.so am stuck between the two of them.not wanting to leave my husband but also doing all i can for my son.today he cryed out for help,and i rushed him to the emergency room.i was hoping they would have kept him. but he gave him a dose of meds and sent us home.he has been sleeping every since. what do i do tommorrow.please help

 

Reply
tAMMY bLOOM, Community Member
1/ 8/13 11:55am

i feel your pain, I am in a similar situation, my son is 17 years old, and his step father hates him with a vengance, I am tore between 2 worlds , I desperately need help. I am permenantly disabled and I am a small petite woman 56 years old, I can not make it on my oun, and my son is getting worse by the day, and my husband is a very violent and hateful man, he wants my son dead, and what breakes my heart is that as much as my husband tourtures him my son loves him. My husband is a very sick man, I am on s.s.i. and can't afford to leave him and I have absolutely no one to help me. Does my son quilify for s.s.i. He is not bioligicaly related to me but , I am his mother. when he was 2 years old my son got hung by a blind cord and was dead, he went over 9 minutes with out    oxygen and blood to his brain , he didn't have a pulse or heart beat and not breathing. He was only 2 years at the time of his acciden't, all of the blood vessels burst in his face and he was deep purple and black when we found him. He was put on life support at Grand Strand Medical, and we were mediflighted to M.u.s.c. in Charlestown s.c. I am very poor and in poor health. I begged over the years for a cat scan on his brain but no help came. They told me that he would not survive and if he did he would be a vegetable. Well God performed a miracle on my son, you have to know him well to see the brain damage. He was in a coma, and after a week he came out of his coma, and the doctors told me that it was a true miracle. But I need help and am trapped in a hate filled marriage, and I feel guilty, that I stayed with this man. Please in the name of God ,someone please help me, also they said that he had adhd. Thank You for your time. May GOD bless and keep you in His living arms. my # is 843-333-6902          Respectfuly yours Tammy Bloom

Reply
jud jabri, Community Member
1/14/11 7:22pm

We have a 30 year old son, who is bi-polar. He refuses to take any med or see the doctor. His father is 65 and a heart patient, and it worries me everytime he is upset with our son. Our son holds a part time job at Taco Cabana making a little above minimum wage. He believes that he is contributing to the house hold funds, which is very little. He has been expelled from UTA, because of failing grades. He has sits around playing computer games all the time, instead of making something of himself. We have to tell him to take a bath, brush your teeth, clean the room, do your laundry, etc. His brothers are going to UTA and are graduating this year. We try to encourage this son, but he is so negative in everything. We are at lost on what to do. He does not have insurance, and we are not financially able to help either. Is there some way to get help before he kills his dad early from another heart attack.

 

MOM

Reply
Answer This

Important:
We hope you find this general health information helpful. Please note however, that this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. No information in the Answers above is intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The views expressed in the Answers above belong to the individuals who posted them and do not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media. Remedy Health Media does not review or edit content posted by our community members, but reserves the right to remove any material it deems inappropriate.

By memerry, Community Member— Last Modified: 02/01/14, First Published: 02/19/09