Mom and Dad doing well, but I see signs of stress

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Aiming for Serenity
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 7/22/2009 4:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Dad is recovering from his bypass surgery incredibly well. We've had some very constructive conversations about Mom's BP and how well she is managing right now and how important it will be for her to get additional help if she does get stressed.
 
Mom saw her T Monday and was doing great, and was told by the T that she's handling everything incredibly well. Just today I'm seeing some signs of stress in Mom and am a little concerned. Mom told me last month there is an outpatient group she can attend if she feels like she needs an extra hand.
 
How's this for a mixed metaphore: I don't want to step on Mom's toes and I don't want to stick my nose in where it doesn't belong but I also don't want to stick my head in the sand if Mom needs my support.
 
Advise welcome.
I have Depression and Fibromyalgia 
My Mom has Bipolar II
My Niece has Bipolar I


serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 7/23/2009 9:36 AM (GMT -7)   
You're doing well, AIS. Just let your mom know you're there if she needs you, and let her find her own way. If she starts doing something truly loopy, talk to your father. And educate yourself as much as you can about BP. You're already doing that. She'll need you as a sounding board when she realizes that you're the one who understands the most about the disorder.

Good luck,
serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


Aiming for Serenity
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 7/23/2009 2:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, seraphena. I think we are on the right track and the future looks very encouraging.
 
How are you doing? You've been in my thoughts.
I have Depression and Fibromyalgia 
My Mom has Bipolar II
My Niece has Bipolar I


sukay
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1432
   Posted 7/25/2009 5:42 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi AFS,

I am so glad that your father is doing so well!  It's amazing how much they have advanced in cardiac care and THAT is a wonderful thing! blush

IMO,... it sounds like you're starting to fall back into your old pattern of getting too involved again.

Your father is going to be fine now and the cardiac unit will be making sure he is taking care of his health by have him attend his cardiac rehab program, which is wonderful for him and hopefully change his life.

You and your father have had wonderful, positive conversations BEFORE about your mom's bipolar illness that turned around and turned ugly in the end...remember?

You're mom has been handling all of stuff with your father very well to your surprise and going to all of her appointments and again you remain hopeful.  She is learning about the outpatient program and is showing some type of interest in it.

I would encourage you to stay on your coarse of keeping your distance and letting mom & dad handle their own issues so you don't end up on the vicious circle that always has happened in the past.  You're trying to handle this in a new, healthier approach for everyone remember? 

So I would encourage mom to attend the outpatient program by telling her that it is Perfect Timing! ...Dad is on his own program that will take  him away from home for a certain amount of time each week with his rehab and that she should also go to her outpatient program and concentrate on getting her support and education for a healthier lifestyle as well.

AFS, I think this is your answer and perfect timing to get your point across that we talked about in a previous post.

Hope everything goes well! blush

Keep us posted.


~sukay~
 Bipolar - 2004
     Crohns disease - 1995 
Arthritis & Fibromyalgia 
 
Leo Buscaglia


Aiming for Serenity
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 7/28/2009 12:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, Sukay. I needed to hear that. I've been trying to walk the fine line, and need to remind myself to let them be responsible for themselves. I talk with Mom or Dad every few days and they are both doing well. Things seem to have fallen into place, somehow, it just feels right. What's different now is that Mom and Dad are calling Mom's disorder by name and talking, unprompted, about managing it.

Mom is "real" when she's talking to me. I think she is trusting me more - she can see that I'm "on her side". I'm not questioning her, but when she mentions that she rests when Dad rests, I say "that's smart -- it would be so easy to get really worn down" to which she replies "Yes, and that could trigger an episode" that sort of thing.

Mom called Sunday night and said she wanted to go to lunch with friends on Tuesday but didn't think Dad should be home alone for a few hours, and asked if my son and I could come over and hang out with Dad. That's where I am now. I'm online while my son beats his Grampa at MarioCart racing again. Mom just got home and it seems she was able to relax and really enjoy herself for a few hours. She says that tomorrow, when she goes to her therapist, that she's sure Dad will be fine on his own for an hour.

Dad has said a few more things on his own that indicate he understands things better and and more realistically. He seems to be recognizing that Mom is doing well because of her actively managing her condition. I guess only time will tell, though.

Thanks again for the good feedback.
I have Depression and Fibromyalgia 
My Mom has Bipolar II
My Niece has Bipolar I


sukay
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1432
   Posted 7/28/2009 9:29 PM (GMT -7)   

AFS

I'm glad that thing are looking up for you and that your parents are taking more control of things.

Best wishes.  Continue to keep us posted.

Sincerely, blush


~sukay~
 Bipolar - 2004
     Crohns disease - 1995 
Arthritis & Fibromyalgia 
 
Leo Buscaglia


BPWife
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 139
   Posted 7/29/2009 7:23 AM (GMT -7)   
AFS,
Glad to hear that things are going well. Sometimes just getting the person to accept the condition and talk about it is 90% of the battle! I think that once the person (and/or spouse) openly accepts BP, a lot of things start to fall into place - talking about it, being compliant with meds, going to therapy, etc. Seems like that's what is happening with your parents.

Definitely keep finding out all you can about BP. Your mom and your dad will need to know that you understand the condition and that you are there to support them PROVIDED that they do what they need to do (i.e., go to therapy, see pdoc, take meds, etc.).

You do need to keep some of your distance because in all reality, this is their marriage and they need to work and manage this together in order to get through it.

Good luck - you sound like you are on the right track!

BPWife

Aiming for Serenity
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 8/9/2009 11:23 PM (GMT -7)   
BPWife, I think you hit the nail on the head. Acceptance was a huge problem for my parents. Now that they are past that obstacle they seem to be doing really well.

Following everyone's advice and keeping some distance. Helped mom take her mom to a routine annual physical. Mom was a bit crabby and stressed but stable. I sensed she needed patience and some space so I just took her instructions for the most part. She mentioned her upcoming therapy appointment (seemed she wanted me to know she was following through) and was upbeat about dad's continuing progress. All in all, they are in a good place and I'm happy for them.

Now I'm putting my life back in order. I was beginning to get a bit paralyzed by how much catching up I needed to do (my special mode of depression) until I recognized "Hey, both my parents have been hospitalized for significant issues in the past month. And, oh yea, I'd been responsible for a group of 90+ year-old senior citizens for several weeks before that. And oh yea, one of them died the day after I became her legal guardian." and sort of gave myself permission for being a mess and having a mess. Giving myself permission always seems to do the trick for me.... gets me unfrozen. I did laundry. Yeah! Nothing better than a stack of clean towels and a basket full of clean socks and underwear.

Tomorrow maybe I will even try to catch up on my bookeeping and taxes for 2008. One receipt at a time.
I have Depression and Fibromyalgia 
My Mom has Bipolar II
My Niece has Bipolar I


serafena
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 8/10/2009 3:31 PM (GMT -7)   
I forget, are you in therapy, Aiming, because you REALLY could use it.

serafena
Serafena
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II


Aiming for Serenity
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 8/10/2009 9:05 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm not currently, but I have been before. I'm trying to apply what I've learned in the past, but suppose it would be good to see someone again.
I have Depression and Fibromyalgia 
My Mom has Bipolar II
My Niece has Bipolar I


mommy.michele
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 369
   Posted 8/11/2009 6:01 PM (GMT -7)   
I think it definatly wouldn't hurt to see someone again. Sometimes just getting it all out helps. And I know I have forgotten a lot of the things my therapist has taught me, and need to be reminded every now and then.
"Just because you're in the driver's seat, doesn't mean
you have to run people over." ~ Fred Pausch

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