Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Roller Coaster Goes Up

It's been two months since the incident that made me realize this whole bipolar thing is for real.  Looking back over the past 11 years, I don't know why I didn't see the severity of it earlier.  Yet, I still often wonder, is it really bipolar?  I'm beginning to accept that this is the nature of the illness.

It's complicated.  Difficult even to explain how it works.  I've read book after book after book.  Some describing the medical aspects of bipolar (also known as manic depressive).  Some recounting real life stories of those who suffer with this disorder.  Some on how to be supportive to your loved one that is suffering.

As similar as these stories are to what I see in our life, they are just as different. 

We've been struggling to find a psychiatrist that will take him on as new, cash paying patient.  And, although I am certain bipolar disorder is what we are dealing with, he hasn't gotten an official diagnosis. 

Earlier this week, he went back to saying he didn't think he had a problem.  It was just the alcohol.  Now that he's been sober for two months, he's fine.

He's not. 

And him saying he's fine was my first clue that it's getting worse.  I've watched him this week go from sullen and withdrawn to jittery and agitated.  At first, it was a welcome change.  He was finally an active participant in our lives again.  He seemed present in mind not just in body.  The first days were exciting.  It was a glimpse in having my husband back.  Someone I could talk with not just to.  Someone that wasn't a hollow shell sitting next to me on the couch at night.

But then it happened.  The cockiness, the rapid speech, the obsessive thoughts, the inability to look at things from another perspective.  The look in his eyes has changed.  As if he is the only person that can do anything right, and the rest of us...well we are the crazy morons.

I did something tonight that I've never done before.  Without his knowledge, I emailed his boss.  Since he spends a good portion of his day at work, I need some insight.  Has his behavior and mood changed there as well?  I've talked to his boss about this illness two months ago.  He seemed genuinely concerned and supportive.  But, did I overstep my bounds?  Am I overreacting?  Maybe I shouldn't have done that.

This is why this illness is so damn tricky.  Because on days like this, I start I the crazy person?

He finally has an appointment with a psychiatrist tomorrow.  I'm worried he will go into it thinking there is nothing wrong. And we will stay on this everlasting roller coaster ride. 

I gave him a book and asked him to read the first few chapters tonight while I'm at dance class with our oldest.  He rolled his eyes at me as if to say..."yeah, right."

I don't know what else to do from here.


Reccewife said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Hi, I know we haven't met, but I was really touched by your blog and wanted to just reach out a little if that's ok...
When I am in a bad place in my head, it is my dh who always knows first. And sometimes I fight him fiercely when he tries to point it out, but years of trial and error has taught him how to tell me gently and me how to step back and accept it. Depending on the severity of his bi-polar your dh may never get to the point of being able to accept gracefully, and then it might just be about you bracing yourself for the next little while and learning your limits on what you can take.
There are support groups out there for families of those struggling with mental illness, if you hear of one in your area you might find it really helpful.
Anyway, hope that wasen't preachy! Take care.

Making It Work Mom said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I just went back to read your other post. You have been through so much. I can't even imagine. I know that your husband will get the help he needs because you are there helping him make it happen. Amazing. Make sure you take time for yourself.

Mrs. R said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Just reread the older post. I know nothing of the illness, nor of how to deal with it, but am thinking of you as you hit this head on.

I would assume there might be some sort of counselor who specializes in mental illness. If he won't go, maybe you can at least go to learn a little bit about how to help/support/deal when he needs it most.

Shell said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I'm sending you lots of prayers.

My father is bipoloar(along with being an addict) and when he admitted to having a problem and was on meds for bipolar, it made such a difference. But, when he was convinced he was fine, things were SO HARD for us.


dosweatthesmallstuff said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Found your blog at the Mom Pledge Community blog hop. Thanks for sharing your story with us. I can't imagine what you have to go... But from what I've read, it seems that you're one strong, amazingly sweet wife and mother, and your husband and children are so lucky to have you.

RoryBore said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I too went back and read the older post, and I can't imagine what that time must have been like for you. My DHs brother is bi-polar and the family has been in and out of drama with him for the last 10 years. It's so frustrating because just when we think it is gettting under control, or better...he spirals out of control. He has alienated almost everyone in the family: he even lashed out at ME publicly on my blog and Facebook (I deleted the comments) AFTER he told us to stay out of his life. We are not even on speaking terms at this moment. Yet he seems to think that is no reason for our children not to play together and blames us for them not being close. (which is not entirely true...we arrange time through grandma). I have told DH that I support him in whatever direction he wishes to take with his brother - he's family, and love should "stick". But I have said I do not want him in my home, or around my children until I know he is stable. Because he gets really violent and aggressive - just flies into rages. Until such time as we know he is staying on meds that work, and continues ongoing therapy, we have to keep our distance. I just pray that God will work on his heart, be with his family, and that one day, a door will opened again for us to reconcile. I believe prayer does change things, and that's all I can do for now. Will add you to my prayer list! Keep the faith and stay strong.