A Relatively Quiet Day

I only talked to Mom once today, to remind her to take her meds, which she did. She wasn’t any more mentally organized than yesterday, and her emotional level appeared about the same. She does have an appointment with a shrink tomorrow afternoon. I faxed him this letter:

Dear Dr. (well known shrink’s name),

You are seeing my mother, (Mom’s Name), Tuesday at 4:00 pm. Here are some of my observations that you may find helpful in treating her.

Mom has shown symptoms of bipolar disorder for as long as I can remember, going back at least 30 years. Her mother also had symptoms typical of bipolar disorder, as did her grandmother. I am aware of at least two previous occasions where she was clinically diagnosed with bipolar disorder, but never got any treatment for it. Her manic episodes have been getting progressively more severe, especially since my brother was killed in a car accident in 19XX. The most recent episode also included hypochondria, paranoia, and delusions. She has a tendency to develop any or all of the adverse reactions to medication after she reads the patient advisories. She also projects all of her negative behavior on my father. Her projection is not recent behavior, but she has only recently been saying that he plans on hurting her. My concern is that if this is projected, she may actually become dangerous.

She is also VERY fixated on Sjogren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disease that affects primarily salivary glands and tear ducts. She was denied entry into a (Major University) study on Sjogren’s because her diagnosis was not believed to be accurate. When she feels that she is in distress because of Sjogren’s syndrome she is very quickly calmed with a saline IV, even though she presents as normally hydrated.

She has a serious aversion to anything psychiatric, and remembers seeing mental patients being tortured, straight jacketed, and medicated to the point of drooling. According to her older sister, the only accurate part of the memories is that they lived several miles from a mental hospital, and would occasionally see patients there working in the garden.

She was prescribed (Popular bipolar drug/dosage), which she stopped taking on Friday evening. I was able to convince her on Sunday to continue taking them as prescribed by linking her Sjogren’s symptoms to the bipolar disorder – which I believe to be accurate.

Until the most recent episode, my father would not accept her diagnosis of bipolar disorder either. He has been enabling her behavior by feeding into whatever illness she claims is responsible for it, most recently the Sjogren’s.

If I can be of any assistance with Mom’s treatment, or if there is additional information that you need, please let me know.

~ by namegoeshere on April 24, 2007.

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