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Thursday, May 21, 2009 CONFUSED, Community Member, asks

Q: Is stealing from being bi-polar? My daughter just steals all the time..

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Answers (5)
knowthyself, Community Member
5/21/09 7:27pm

Confused, 

 

Stealing behavior is not related to Bipolar Disorder.  Stealing can be due to a lack of impulse control, where morality and negative consequences do not override the compulsion to steal and can also be related to defiant behavior.

 

If she is stealing items that have no value to her it may be a sign of Kleptomania, though this disorder is quite, very rare.  If she is stealing from you, despite your warnings, punishments and discussions on morality, she may be displaying an aspect of defiant behavior.  If defiance may be the issue, you will most likely see other defiant behaviors like arguing with you, deliberately not doing what you had asked, doing what you had asked her not to do and possibly acts of retribution against you.  I am not sure if this information will pertain to your daughter, you gave little information about otehr behaviors, age, or if she has a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder. 

 

If she has a therapist, this would be a good issue to present and address.

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CONFUSED, Community Member
5/24/09 12:49pm

My daughter, whom i am speaking about, is 34 yrs. old, not a child by no means. She moved home recently because of a divorce she is going through.

  After i wrote to get answers on this "stealing", we found out she had stolen 3 checks from my 85 yr. old mother, and forged her name.

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nonethewiser, Community Member
5/21/09 5:02pm

I have never had the desire to steal.  I've been bipolar all my life and I am going on 53.  Perhaps this is a new sympton that needs to be brought up with her doctor.  Good luck.

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Virginia W., Community Member
5/25/09 9:39am

Everybody's bipolar is different.  Many have co-occurring disorders, such as polysubstance abuse and anti-social personality disorder.  I have been bipolar all my life, going on a half-century now, and am an honorable person when it comes to money and sex.  Not everyone has all the synptoms all the time.  Also, I think the thirties can be a very dangerous time for people with the bipolar condition (from my own experience).  Even though she is thirty-four, you can talk to her doctor and tell him things; he just can't tell you anything.  This is the way my very ethical doctor explained it to me when my husband wanted to tell him something.

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CONFUSED, Community Member
5/25/09 9:55am

Thank You so very much, i will speak to her doctor...

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bipolarwinner, Community Member
6/21/09 12:16am

Yes, I am bi-polar and steal things all the time. From all kinds of places. For me it has to do with my brain functioning at a higher level I feel, that I can just see all the flaws in places security. So, although I have the money to buy the things I steal, and often they are things I don't really need, it is the satisfaction of knowing I can beat the system so easily. 

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silvery, Community Member
10/22/10 12:54am

I don't think that what you have is just bipolar disorder, if that.  You lack guilt or empathy for stealing (which is morally incorrect; possibly not a concept you are familiar with) You most definitely have a borderline personality disorder; you do not mention that your inclination is ever upset by a concern for the unethical nature of your actions.  Even within the spectrum of "wrong", stealing from a large corporation from Wal-Mart is one thing, but do you steal from individuals as well?  People that are directly affected by your transgressions?  If so, and you still experience no concern or guilt, you should definitely be re-evaluated.

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silvery, Community Member
10/22/10 12:54am

I don't think that what you have is just bipolar disorder, if that.  You lack guilt or empathy for stealing (which is morally incorrect; possibly not a concept you are familiar with) You most definitely have a borderline personality disorder; you do not mention that your inclination is ever upset by a concern for the unethical nature of your actions.  Even within the spectrum of "wrong", stealing from a large corporation from Wal-Mart is one thing, but do you steal from individuals as well?  People that are directly affected by your transgressions?  If so, and you still experience no concern or guilt, you should definitely be re-evaluated.

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hurt, Community Member
1/30/13 2:01am

That is highly offensive to me as I have bipolar disorder and I have urges to steal and sometimes I do act upon them. I have checked with my therapist, and she agrees it is due to bi-polar that I have these urges. Just because I steal, does not mean I lack guilt or empathy for stealing, I understand it is wrong, and I am not saying that by having this disorder, I have the right to steal, but comments like yours are not needed, as they are misleading and plain inconsiderate.

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helpinghand, Community Member
9/ 3/09 5:49pm

They say stealing is not part of it...but I have had the illness since age 12 and that is when I started stealing.  It seems to me part of it is, but it about impulse control and not the mania - impulses are a part of it as you well know...Hynosis works for me, but it is not a one time fix - I have to go back yearly...hope this helps her...

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By CONFUSED, Community Member— Last Modified: 01/30/13, First Published: 05/21/09