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Guilty As Charged. I Wish I Could Take It Back.

Friday, December 23, 2011

You all know of my disorder......if you don't try reading the title of my blog, it'll give you a clue.
I have eight children. Six of which are adopted, two I gave birth to.

Bipolar is genetic. Two of my kids are predisposed to the disorder. When I was first diagnosed I wondered where it came from. I mean, my parents seemed normal enough. Then I remembered my father's alcoholism and his drug seeking behavior. Hmmm, could he have been self medicating?

His mother was a total lunatic. Sorry, there's no other word to describe her. She was a mean spirited, awful woman. She also had this deep seated paranoia.

Then, after re-connecting with my dad's sisters, stories of bipolar came out. I have cousins with it, cousins I've never met because my grandmother farmed all of her kids out except for my father. I wish she had farmed him out too. He would have had a much better life. But that's another story.

What I really wanted to write about was my daughter, Karli, and her struggle with Bipolar I. I have Bipolar II. It's not as severe as Bipolar I. I have no hallucinations, no psychotic breaks, but she does.

I know I'm not to blame, but I can't help but feel terribly guilty of the defective gene I've passed on to my princess.

She wrote a post of her hallucinations tonight, a very brave move on her part. I'd like to ask you to read it, to try to understand the terror she lives with and maybe encourage her.

Her blog is called "A Bipolar Princess." She's a wonderful, loving girl and I'm lucky she's mine. I just feel terrible I'm the one that's made her suffer.

19 comments:

Unknown December 23, 2011 at 10:37 PM  

I am on my way over there right after I finish typing this. And if she ever needs a little extra help from someone who knows...I am happy to do so!

My Mercurial Nature December 23, 2011 at 10:38 PM  

Oh bah, that comment was from me (I was signed into the wrong email)! :-/

The Bipolar Diva December 23, 2011 at 10:40 PM  

lol, I do that ALL the time! Thank you! and thank you for the recipe, I can't wait to try it tomorrow!

angel shrout December 23, 2011 at 11:02 PM  

As a mom to a bipolar who wondered where it came from let me tell you it can also skip generations. My mother was the carrier for our side and I would dare say 2 of my sisters have it. I suffer from depression and panic but not swings like I have seen Doug do. My BFF has a daughter that is Bipolar 1 AND Autistic..it has been a hard road for her and her family. the hallucinations are what send her daughter reelings. She knows if those come back she has to go to the doctor again for a meds adjust.

MarkD60 December 24, 2011 at 3:54 AM  

I just quit a job where the manager said the owners wife was bi polar.
She was a true psycho and the main reason I quit.
You don't seem similar to her at all. You are aware, she was unaware.

Barfly December 24, 2011 at 6:44 AM  

You sound like an awesome Mom and I'm sure your daughter knows how lucky she is to have you.

Tami December 24, 2011 at 8:07 AM  

Sweetie, I know how you feel responsbile… My son has bipolar too and I feel like it is my fault. He even told me on a few occasions that he doesn't want children because he doesn't want to pass down Bipolar. It's so sad that he has to feel that way and yet I totally get it! I'm sure you already do this, but share with her your stories so she knows you understand. Be there for her and hold her hand. Route for her when she is down so she knows she has someone in her corner fighting for her. xoxo {HUGS} to you too!
Tami

Mad Mind December 24, 2011 at 8:17 AM  

I know she's a great kid. After all, she is yours. And you're pretty awesome!

Carrie's Rambles December 24, 2011 at 8:29 AM  

While it isn't bipolar, my mother did pass on some genetic issues to myself and my sister. One of which is a blood disorder which I have to monitor to make sure it does not progress too "stroke" levels. It also figures largely in the reason I have never been able to get pregnant.
She feels badly and often tries to blame herself. I don't. First--she didn't know when she got pregnant and Second--I am glad, very glad that she gave life to me. Regardless of what I may or may not have to cope with, I was born and I am am so very happy about that (most days) and I wouldn't change my mother for the world.

Carol-Anne (Use the Good Dishes!) December 24, 2011 at 2:30 PM  

I've subscribed to her blog and will definitely leave her a comment. I know about the guilt and although I know it won't help, it really ISN'T your fault. I've passed on the alcoholic gene to my son and see it already in him and just die of guilt...but in my 'rational' mind I know it isn't really my fault, but it doesn't help. I'm sorry for both of you that she's suffering.... Hope you're able to have a Merry Christmas!

Sandra December 24, 2011 at 11:19 PM  

Well I think you're so brave to share your disorder with us. Can't wait to read about the Princess's account of her experience. This type of information can only enlighten those of us who are unfamiliar with the intricasies of being bipolar. Off to read!

Tere December 25, 2011 at 12:15 PM  

I have similar feelings, as I have predisposed my son with the "joys" of anxiety, depression, and ocd. He also deals with ADHD. I feel like hell because I wish I could help him, but he is one step ahead, I have been able to get him help earlier than I, myself, had been diagnosed. Hang in there.

Danielle December 25, 2011 at 6:18 PM  

I have Bipolar I (occasional auditory hallucinations and paranoia). I've been stable on meds for 9 years. I worry about passing it along too. My son already inherited my OCD, poor guy!

I knew I had OCD when we chose to start a family, but I didn't know I was bipolar. Would knowing have made me make a different choice? No. Everybody has a challenge to deal with in life. Being bipolar isn't easy, but it's not the worst thing either. You know?

Off to read your daughter's post.

High Heeled Life December 27, 2011 at 11:15 AM  

My dear friend, as I read about your daughter , the tears just flooded. Though for different reasons, not wanting to exist at times is something we have in common. She is very blessed to have a wonderful mother like you and it sounds like a great supportive family... I'm going over to visit her now... and will keep you both in my thoughts and prayers..Blessings to you both...xo HHL

Saracide December 27, 2011 at 5:29 PM  

I am so scared my son will end up with a mental illness. Being adopted, I have absolutely NO knowledge of what runs in my family. It makes me feel so alone sometimes.

Kelley December 28, 2011 at 2:58 PM  

You have nothing to feel terrible about! You gave birth to a beautiful girl that I know you have brought much joy to over the years. You didn't know about passing on of genes. Even if you had, you could never know for sure that it would be passed. She was meant to be here on this earth and you were meant to be her mother. That is how I see it. :)

Not Supermom December 29, 2011 at 6:48 PM  

Hi love.

You don't know me from Adam, and while we don't share the same disorder, we share the fact that our children have something genetically inherited from us. In our case it's metabolic and autoimmune.

Anyway, I wanted to write you a note, to make sure you heard this loud and clear from someone who has had those same thoughts:

YOU ARE NOT AT FAULT.

This is not your fault. You are not guilty of doing something wrong, of putting your child in jeopardy. All we are guilty of is loving children to whom genetics dealt a shitty hand.

Genetics is a hell of a thing to happen to a kid. Period. It doesn't matter what the disease or disability is, genetics can royally blow. However, we, the parents, the passers-down of the genes, are not at fault. It's NOT YOUR FAULT.

Mommy guilt is a bitch, and it can be controlling, overwhelming. The only way to get rid of it is to accept, and forgive, the hand you've been dealt. Even then, Mommy guilt can still raise it's bitchy head.

I say it again, though. It's NOT your fault.

Hugs to you and yours.

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