I completely agree with Serafena in that no one can really diagnose your son as bipolar. I do know this however: As a teenager, no one would diagnose me as bipolar either, though looking back, that seems to have been the central issue. I know that it is very hard to diagnose children, but ten to twenty years ago it was unheard of. My son is 9, and they seem to have realized the occurence of bipolar disorder in children now. He has been diagnosed, and experienced some of what you explained your son experienced at a young age. Also, I have been told by my son's doctor that children with bpd were quite often diagnosed with ADHD back in the day, because the symptoms fit that as well. Also, I have been told by my doctor that bpd can really set in during puberty, which is when mine became a problem.
I also know nothing of the military or it's outlook on these things, but I think the most imptortant thing is to have your son see someone - whether it be a doctor or counselor - but he needs someone to talk to. If he is bipolar, it can be dangerous. I also really agree that you might want to see someone yourself, as it tends to be just as hard on the family.
I don't know if this helps, but I truly feel for you and empathize. It is hell watching my 9 year old have to deal with this in his childhood, and though I can't imagine doing it when he was an adult, I do know how it hurts to see your child suffer.
Wishing you the best,
living with bpd
Diagnosed Bipolar I 2008
Diagnosed everything else imaginable for 12 years
Diagnosed IBS 2000
Son diagnosed Bipolar 2008
Diagnosed Bipolar I in 2008
Diagnosed IBS in 2000
Son Diagnosed Bipolar in 2008