family of disorders!

by Rhonda Nickerson
(Fayetteville, NC)

I am a mother of 6 children,4 boys, and 2 girls. My oldest who is now 20, and my 18 year old (girls) are both out of the house, married, and have their own children, I am left with my oldest son 16, who has ADHD, my 8 year old, who has bi-polar disorder, my 5 year old, who is being tested for Autism, and my 2 year old, who I am keeping a close eye on, because he is beginning to show signs like my 8 year old, of rage, and tantrums, and the evil look like he could hurt something or someone. For the past 3 years, I have been getting treatment for my oldest, and my eight year old, and last year before my 5 year old started kindergarten, he got added in the mix. We have recently moved to a bigger city than where we were and I have noticed a BIG change in the help, that we really didn't have much of, where we were. I as well have bipolar disorder, as well as my mother.

I have been in treatment for 2 years now, and am on medication, and sitting down sometimes, and looking back, I really wished that I would of been in treatment a long time ago, when I was younger, thinking about all the mistakes, and all the things I went through and all of the unrash decisions I made, because I really didn't comprehend the outcome, and didn't care who I hurt, or verbally abused, or what I broke, or who I scarred, or if I even had any friends. I look at it now that I have been on medication for 2 years, and wonder wow, that was really me? I know some people will say well its too late to do anything about it now, and they give up without giving it a second thought. I however am glad I did go in treatment even though I am alot older, because I now have children who are coming up with this disorder, and I want to be there

for them as they are growing up, and help them now while they are still children, so that maybe their growing up experience wont be so horrible, and maybe they can feel in their own self, that they can have a little bit of control over their rages, and maybe they can learn different techniques, of how to calm their own self down, I have not always been the perfect parent, but it seems like these last 2 years, I have gotten a wake up call after being on medication, and realized that something really was wrong with me and it needed to be dealt with, so that I could be there for the younger one's that really need me now.

So far things are looking better, we have alot of appointments each week, and with both my husband and I working, sometimes it can be stressful, but the overall outcome of all of this will be worth it in the long run, and hopefully each of my children will benefit, and be able to live normal lives with the disorders each of them has. They may not be perfect lives, but they will know what their conditions are, and the consequences of not taking their medications, and hopefully they will take that knowledge with them when they are out of the house and on their own, with their own families someday.

I have had alot of issues I have had to deal with as far as getting these appointments, and having the psychiatrists test the children, because alot of these psychiatrists do not want to diagnose bipolar disorder in young children, but yet they are not hesitant in giving them medication for this disorder, that in itself has been my biggest frustration so far!

I wish you all good luck with your children who have this disorder, and ALOT of patience, which is something this bipolar disorder person has had to learn to get!

Thank you so much for your words of wisdom and also for your wishes of luck to me in my treatment of children with bipolar disorder.

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