This blog is my place to vent and share resources with other parents of children of trauma. I try to be open and honest about my feelings in order to help others know they are not alone. Therapeutic parenting of adopted teenagers with RAD and other severe mental illnesses and issues (plus "neurotypical" teens) , is not easy, and there are time when I say what I feel... at the moment. We're all human!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Medications and stress

When Hubby calmed down and came back downstairs after me telling him I'd let my mom pay for a business expense and my meds, we talked about me being on meds. I know Hubby doesn't like meds. He rarely even takes a Tylenol for a headache. The thought of being on meds long-term is hard for him, and when the kids were taking 10-15 pills a day it really bothered him.

I know Hubby doesn't like the idea of me taking lots of meds or increasing my meds. I also know it bothers him to hear about me sobbing or being miserable. I think Hubby feels that because I was doing OK without meds before we got the kids that I don't really have Bipolar disorder. Or that's it's controllable by willpower or something. I know he generalizes this to the kids' issues too.

Gotta admit, this ticks me off a little. I've struggled with depression my whole life. Most of the time I've been able to handle it without meds, unless under severe stress like final exams or, I don't know, having 2 emotionally disturbed kids and a teenage daughter with a business that is struggling and a husband who hates his job?! When the kids are out of the house, assuming I do not find another way to add stress to my life (I'm probably addicted to it), then we can talk about reducing or removing my meds).

Sometimes I think I wait too long to take meds and that I could be a lot happier. I don't want to take "happy pills," but why should I and my family suffer because of this stupid disorder if I can find a med that takes the edge off without side effects. I don't like living on the edge like this, just because I'm not suicidal.

Hubby said he wanted to alleviate MY stress by getting rid of the business. That really ticked me off! My stress does not come from the business. This company needs only an hour or two a day from me and I can spend the rest of the time dealing with the kids. The only way getting rid of the company would alleviate my stress is that it would alleviate Hubby's stress as he tries to continue to deal with a full-time job and the business, and while granted that is important - it is also short-sighted.

I asked him about filing bankruptcy, but since most of the debt is from buying the business it is personal debt so if the company declares bankruptcy it wouldn't help. Now that Hubby has a good paying job, if we declare personal bankruptcy then most likely the company would have to be sold to pay off the debts. Although the company is not making money now, it is the only way to get out of this hole - unless Hubby wants to work at this job that makes him miserable for the next 10 years.

I also pointed out that while I am obviously not dealing well with life right now, I'm also OFF MY MEDS! And I'm yo yoing back and forth off and on them - half doses or none at all if I can't afford them. Even if I didn't need them this would be messing me up. If I can remember back that far I think we've finally found the right combo and dosages and was on a pretty even keel and handling life. All I need to do is get back to that.

So if my last few posts are rambling, TMI, or I sound mentally unstable I apologize.
I'll take two pills and call you in the morning.


Jessi Hacker said...

wow honey I feel ya! I am going to the doctor on Monday and saying drug me please, lol! My husband is or was the same way about medication, but a couple of years ago I got really sick, mentally that is, and he watched it help me out of the hole I was knocked into. Have you tried asking your doctors for samples? Mine usually gives them to me, or you can call the drug company that makes the medicine that you need, and they often have programs to help. By the way I got your email, it's entirely too awesome to reply in a hurry, so I'm waiting till I have a few minutes to do it justice!

Anonymous said...

My husband is also an only-take-Tylenol-if-you-are-dying kind of guy. It helped him a lot to read about BiPolar (Dr. Phelps' book). Also, when I get bad, I get real bad.

But an angle to use would be that for those lucky enough to "control" bipolar w/o meds (very few!), they need to have regulation in their lives. Regular exercise, sleep, food times, etc. And, of course, low stress.

So is there any proof you are bipolar? Sure, if he'd open his eyes, and if he kept a journal or other records throughout your years together.

I just realized how this fits in with the way he treats Bear.

I don't think that he understands, deep down, that mental illnesses are biologically based. Somewhere, he still thinks that if you, or Bear, tries hard enough, then everything will be better. Oh Lord! How I wish that were true!

If you live right, you will be healthy. (Not too far off the mark, but the mental illnesses / differences make living right nearly impossible at times).

I'm certain there have been papers published about how to try to combat stereotypes about mental illnesses. Perhaps when you've run out of other things to research ...

There are also plenty of examples out there of how it feels to be bipolar or depressed or (etc). I know for me it was a complete revelation the first time I took antidepressants and I became aware of what it was like to be happy "just because". Likewise I was pretty amazed when I read someone saying they could not imagine ever thinking about killing themselves, as I've had thoughts in that direction since I was 13. Not everyone experiences the world the way he does.

But at the least, please, both of you need to read the patient literature on your meds. Sometimes when you come off an antidepressant (assuming you avoid possible horrible withdrawal symptoms), the med may stop working for you when you go back on.

Essie the Accidental Mommy said...

Personally I am all for psych meds but avoid tylenol, and other otc meds. I can suck it up for a cold or virus. But when it comes to psych meds, it is like balancing out brain chemicals that are lacking or are too much. I mean, if a person had cancer we wouldn't say, suck it up and if you try hard enough it will go away.

Jules said...

To be honest, it seems like your husband is particularly opposed to medication used to treat mental illness. Why? There is a stigma associated with mental illness and it seems like he's being affected by it. Taking that medication is no different than taking a drug to help you physically. I have a feeling he would react differently if you needed to take a medication for cancer or MS (God forbid).

I also wanted to share my personal experience: I'm 28 yrs old and for most of my life post-puberty, I was completely miserable with no external cause. After trying several SSRI's, I finally tried Lexapro and it has changed my life. I smile for no reason! I wake up happy! I know everyone is different but I just wanted to throw that out there. Have a wonderful day :)