Bipolar disorder and parenting for me are sometimes the most wonderful part of my life and more often the most difficult. My children are 12, 9 and 4.
My Miss 12-year-old daughter is a good girl she has been helping her dad and me for years. It is only now starting high school that things have changed with her. Our relationship has changed. Her smart assy comments and sniping under her breath drive me crazy. She is often the instigator upsetting her sister and the brawling that happens makes me angry because I often think she should know better. But then I have to remind myself she is still only 12 and I’m pretty sure I was still arguing and fighting with my siblings at 12. She reminds me of me and that is often hard to take because I had wanted my kids to have a happy life and it’s me making it difficult; it’s me that can’t handle it.
My beautiful Miss 9-year-old has a big heart and soft soul. She has struggled with the devastating loss of her grandad a few years ago. It really broke her heart and she still cries today for him. It was so difficult for her she lost hair over his death. She has always been a dreamer and this quality isn’t tolerated at school and she struggled with English and maths. She was at staying at her grandma’s house when her grandma had a stroke in the early morning a little while ago. She had to witness this and she was the one that called 000; just too much for one so young.
She is now doing better at school but is getting bullied. I tell you it is so frustrating because all she really wants is to be accepted at school. I am very worried about her and the possibility of her “catching“ the bipolar from me. I see so many symptoms and I would not wish bipolar on my worst enemy. She has been seeing a Psychologist for all the issues with school and the losses. I was told they don’t diagnose a child until around 12 years old and she seems relatively normal so just keep on loving her as she is.
My handsome Master 4-year-old mummy’s boy is full on. He will command anyone’s attention. He is loud and full of spunk. He has a confident sense of self. He seems to run the family and we all still jump when he needs something. I guess he still plays the “baby of the family” card.
They are all good, average, everyday kids; it’s me with the warped sense of mind. My bipolar sees me frustrated with Miss 12. I am always on the defensive with her. I get so withdrawn that I can’t look at her and I have to speak to her through her dad. It’s sad because I hate the struggle it takes in my head to be present with her. Being confined to the house more now than when I was working full time; I find it harder to get into the mentality that I am the parent in the house and what I say goes. It’s especially difficult when sometimes I still feel like a teenager looking for the guidelines too.
We have amazing times where I’m on the up usually headed towards a manic episode. We go out shopping, spend way too much money and have a great day or two but then I am gone into a manic mess. Which include but is not limited to excessive alcohol and red bulls, occasional uppers, dangerous driving, impulse tattoos and piercings and the list can go on forever. It’s in these times we as a family are all lucky to have Mr M there to pick up all the pieces.
I get told often that my children have beautiful manners, are very polite, and very personable. I get told I am a good mother. I guess I am; they are well fed, clothed, groomed, and they get to do most of what they want. They are spoilt too. I can’t take a compliment; like most people. I have to take the words of others on my wonderful mothering skills. I know down deep in my bent little brain they need me and I am the only mother they have so it’s just going to be a daily struggle and learning curve for the whole family.
A work in progress!