Does this sound like BP?

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Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/23/2005 5:17 AM (GMT -7)   
I posted the following messages in the ADHD forum and someone recommended that I copy and paste it here to see what you all said.  My daughter has never been diagnosed or treated for BP and now that she's over eighteen I don't even know if I can get her to be reevaluated.
 
Message 1:
The older of my two daughters has ADD w/depression.  It's strange to see someone so intelligent be so disorganized.  She would do absolutely anything to help someone (at least away from home).  She is now 20 years old and we never have figured out how to help her keep from losing things.  She'll start out every school year with a good planner, a backpack with lots of pockets, and well-organized notebooks.  Within a week or two they're all turned upside down.  It's literally hard to open the door to her dorm room because of the things piled on the floor in front of it.  We've all gone to couseling with her for years and she has medicine that she rarely takes.  The depression seems to come into play mainly when things have gotten hoplessly lost, piled up, and past due.  It's like everything comes to a head and she feels like throwing up her hands and giving up.  She literally locks herself in her room and won't socialize.  She's on the verge of losing her college scholarship because she took a minimum wage job and works until 1:30 am and then can't get up for classes.  Also, she started hanging around with a couple who stay into trouble a lot.  I know she's 20 but I can't help but worry about her.  She sure won't listen to me --especially since she's gotten older.  I try not to say anything but it sure is hard to stand back and watch her learn every little thing the hard way.  Do any of you with ADD have any suggestions for me as a mother?  Do I just turn my back and let her self-destruct or can I actually help in any way?  She still lives at home when school is not in session and she makes a bigger mess than the rest of us put together.  It's not too bad when it remains behind her closed bedroom door, but it always ends up seeping throughout the rest of the house.  It is strange to me that she has little concern for personal hygiene as well.  She doesn't make enough money to move out and she'd certainly lose her scholarship if she picked up more hours at work.  This has been a 20 year struggle that I hoped we would have learned to manage better by now.  sad     

Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/23/2005 5:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Message 2:

Thank you for sharing this info with me Sheryl. I'm so sorry about your brother! My brother had several close brushes with cancer and it was so hard on the whole family. I can only imagine how tough it would be to lose him! Claire also thinks she can do things that don't seem logical although she tested out as gifted. I've suspected that she is bipolar but no one has given her that diagnosis. There is a history of depression in my family. My Mother, her brother, and her Dad had depression. Her Dad had other mental illnesses in his family but I'm not sure what. My Dad's side of the family had some hyperactive members. I remember my aunt, grandmom, and several cousin being extremely high-strung, nervous, and moody. My ex-husband, Claire's biological father, Bob, says he's probably ADHD but I won't buy the H part. He's as slow-moving as a slug! He does have anger management problems and never follows through with promises. I tend to be more hyper but rarely lose my cool. I'm rarely down either. Bob's mom is just plain mean in a calculating, vendictive way. There's got to be a mental illness related to that! She's the type you'd expect to see on the news in cuffs. To think she's a preacher's wife! When Claire was younger, before 8th grade, I didn't have as much trouble getting her to take her medication. Her grades are so much better with it and she isn't nearly as forgetful or disorganized with it, but she refuses to take it regularly. Now she won't go to counseling either. When she quit taking her Adderall she gained 40 lbs very quickly. Four years later she decided to take it again and lost 40 lbs very quickly. She quit taking it again and sure enough, gained 40 plus. Her Dad and a lot of his family are diabetic so I know the sudden weight change is a risk for her. She's only 5'1" and not physically active. Her joints bother her and she's really not motivated to exercise. Claire is moody too. She'll be so happy and sweet for a week or so and then suddenly her poor planning will get her in a pinch and she'll start tongue-lashing everyone in the house, blaming them for her situation. We've endured many years of her verbal abuse and I must say that definitely came from her father. Her younger sister has heart problems, I have an autoimmune disorder, her stepfather lost his eye in a fireworks accident and has suffered from miagranes for the past 4 years, my dad has myasthenia gravis, and my mom's in the midst of having joints repaired and replaced. But you know what? We're all alive, love each other, and muddle through fairly well all things considered. Our number one problem is lack of quality heathcare. We live in TN and run against a brick wall trying to find the care we need.
Thanks again and take care!
Leigh

sheryl=jk
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Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:11 AM (GMT -7)   
Oh Leighanne I hope someone replies, it takes alittle time here but, I have really gotten some great support here, especially Shannon her screen name is Psychnurse, she is very knowlegeable and helpful and caring I hope she & others will read your post and offer some more information to you, I think I offered as much as I know, if I can think of more to offer and share with you that would be helpful I will definalty post. there is one thing I wanted say about the meds, your dauhgter has been on and off the adderall right? which I think I mentioned that although it may help the add, it can definatley worsen the bipolar. I just want to share with you, taht with these meds its all very much trial and error, my son was on resperidal (its an antipsyhcotic, it is used with some people with bipolar), it was great for awhile but the weight gain was tremendous, so we had to switcn and switch, and so on, but now we are at a pretty good combo, but it was a long time getting there , same thing with my daughter, but they are both fairly stable for the moment, this disorder if very tricky, Shannon will tell you, she tweeks her meds here and there as needed to acheive optimom( icannot spell!!) relief. But she knows what she is doing and is able to gauge when she needs to up this or that, and when to back off of this or that. But just want to say dont lose hope or faith, if one med doesnt work after a reasonable amt of move on( or move on very quickly if there is an adverse reaction, hives worsening of behaviour, etc), a good pychiatrist will know this. If she is on something and it works great, if not or the side effect risks are outweighing the benifits as in my sons situation with the weight gain, then it time to move on to something esle, I know this sounds real bad but its taken over 15 meds to find the right combo for my daughter at the ripe old age of SIX!! But she can function, she is happy, she is more social, no weihgt gain problem. Its taken around 10 meds to find the right combo for my son, and finally he is improving we were almost going to hospitalize him a few weeks ago, he was a threat to himself and especially his sister. He is improving he has a ways to go but is improving drastically,. now the positive reinforcer (in his case money), is working as it was not in the past. to have them be able to except therapy, and postive reinforcing programs they have to be in a state of mind to receive, and sometimes it takes meds to do that, I hate to feel like I am pushing meds, but I have seen meds turn my kids around and really help them ( now I need the same help LOL). I really have tried alot of different diets, no gluten no dairy( ibelieve my son is intolerant to it, but he is addicted to milk, he has withdrwals from it, I am serious, but what can i do, he was sneaking whre ever he could, so I caved and gave him the milk. Funny story when I was doing this my husbad refused to go without the milk, so he hid it behind the beer, now in a functional household with sane people, the average person would be hiding the beer behind the milk!!! So thats when I knew ok I got to relent, and give in. Another funny thing my husband siad, he was visiting his sister, and she offered him a glass of milk, but he refused, he said Sheryl might smell it on my breath!! Now when when your hearing this its time to give in and let the family have there milk(sigh). the diets had no affect on my dauhgter what so ever, but I will admit they were helping my son, but it was to hard to keep it up, and as far the omega three for him he could not keep it down even in childrens dose, me and him are intolerant I guess to vitamins, we get very sick when trying to take supplements of that sort, now I can tolerate alot of pharmacueticals, but vitamins no, I wish I get b-12 shots, it bypasses the stomach and goes straight to the blood therefore not making me sick. I used to get them, but my recent doc see no reason why I cant take them in pill form.( wan to add the vitamin therapy worsened my daughter her stomach could tolerate ok, but she began to with draw more) With all this said, again reiterating its very much trial and error with these meds and such, what works for one may not work for another, we are all so different with our body chemistry. My kids cant take the same meds as each other and they are related. While my son was on the adderall he tried to knock his teeth out, he was extremly depressed and violent. So as your daughter is getting older the bipolar can be worsening, where as when she was younger with the adderall it may have worked with the add becasue she was not manifesting bipolar traits as much as she was when she was younger, but now her chemistry is changing and she is manifesting with more serious bipolar traits and who knows what else traits, its impartive she see a doc that you and her can trust, and that will explain everything to you about all the different type meds available out there , there, therapy is good, but without the meds to help her stablize the therapy wont help, what she is experiencing is a chemical imbalance in the brain, many think that these disorders are just mental, there are more than that.  Its is very much a physical thing, just as uclers, and heart problems and diseases etc, so is bipolar its a disease, and needs to be treated physically as well as mental to help the patinet get the stabilzation they need. I am sorry for getting so long winded, just more and more comes to mind, I have heard of patients trying between 20- 100 different meds before reaching the right one for them, its scary, but the alternatives are even scarier in my opinion, depression and mania can kill, its a real disease and need to be treated. My son my not make to reach 15 if he doesnt stay stablized, he has tried jumping off our deck, jumping out of my moving car etc, he has to be medicated to keep him from harmng himslef or others, and he admits he is feeling better and more motivated, his moods have stablized, he not cured by any means as there is no cure but he has definatley improved for the better, but its going to be a constant battle his whole life in keeping him in that stablized state, so he can maintain balance. Hopefully when he gets older he will stay on top of medical/mental maintence for himslef. Please make sure to do your homework on any meds suggested to you, they carry some hefty side effects, but really not anyworse than the adderall, and you are right that yo-yo effect that she is doing to her self with the weight is very dangerous, I know I had an eating disorder myslef and can tell you first hand. ( well I guees I wil always have the disorder, I am just maintaining it, its been a long road getting there.) Given your family history I would really be inclined to belive she is bipolar, but make sure she gets a good doc that willl listen and explain everything. Make sure he gives you the pros and cons of any meds. But also dont freak out over all the side effects, and there are some hefty side effects, but they dont happen to everyone, and most are reversable (not all though), once the med is stopped, but its a risk some of us have to take with ourselves, and in my case my children. I hate that I have to medicate them, but they admit the are able to function and live better. Ok I think i have strained you eyes long enough, but just trying to throw out there what I think from my experince and research. I truly hope someone will answer you here, maybe make your topic more urgent, like HELP NOW PLZ!!!! in the mean while I will be praying for you and family, I know how stressful this is to you, and you need all the support you can get, hang in there...Love...Sheryl smurf
 
PS a good book is the bipolar child by I think Maurice and Janice Papolos, I realize she is not a child but the book goes through early adulthood too, and it goes over add and other disorders as well, schizophrenia etc. ANd you may see something in there that srikes you, and you may go oh yeah this sounds very familiar. I would check it out at the local library first. Fell free to email if you want to, if you clik on my screen name jk it will bring you to my profile and my email will be there, hang in there...
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........

Post Edited (jk) : 8/23/2005 8:36:00 AM (GMT-6)


psychnurse
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:28 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi, Leighann, I'm so glad you posted here.

IMO your daughter is indeed ADD, probably not ADHD since you didn't mention hyperactivity, but if she is hyper, cannot sit still, fidgety, etc. she is probably ADHD. 

The lack of organization and the messiness are the key.  And also, jk was dead on right about the meds - stimulants (especially pharmaceutical methamphetamine derivatives OMG!) will cause a mania so bad it's scary.  Even antidepressants do it.  She has no manic symptoms whatsoever.  Depression/anxiety is common among people with ADD, because of their lack of organization, forgetfulness therefore unable to accomplish and finish things in a timely manner in many cases.   They feel they are not as good as other people, so social anxiety is common as well.  However, when they are doing something, they can "hyperfocus" to the point the whole world ceases to exist and they are perfectionists in this state, overachievers in fact.  This is probably the reason she has a scholarship.  These are the common symptoms, but there are many types of ADD.  It is also inherited.  Irritability is common, snapping at people is very common.   They are frustrated a lot of the time.

My husband happens to be ADD as well, so I live with it also.  It's hard, I know, but he does well on meds.  If she is not doing well, just like every single mental disorder out there, it's time to change doses or medicine or add something.   Usually a stimulant/antypsychotic combo does the trick, but not always.  If she is doing poorly, it's time to see/call the pdoc. 

Here are a list of BP symptoms.   At least one episode of these manic/hypomanic symptoms must be present for a minimum of 4 days, usually longer.


<!-- InstanceBeginEditable name="content" -->

Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder causes dramatic mood swings—from overly "high" and/or irritable to sad and hopeless, and then back again, often with periods of normal mood in between. Severe changes in energy and behavior go along with these changes in mood. The periods of highs and lows are called episodes of mania and depression.

Signs and symptoms of mania (or a manic episode) include:

  • Increased energy, activity, and restlessness
  • Excessively "high," overly good, euphoric mood
  • Extreme irritability
  • Racing thoughts and talking very fast, jumping from one idea to another
  • Distractibility, can't concentrate well
  • Little sleep needed
  • Unrealistic beliefs in one's abilities and powers
  • Poor judgment
  • Spending sprees
  • A lasting period of behavior that is different from usual
  • Increased sexual drive
  • Abuse of drugs, particularly cocaine, alcohol, and sleeping medications
  • Provocative, intrusive, or aggressive behavior
  • Denial that anything is wrong


Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks again Sheryl. It sounds like you've been through the ringer too. My daughter needs medication for sure. I'm just not sure how to convice her to take it. It just doesn't seem fair for children to have such problems. I hope she can be talked into trying a new doctor. If not, maybe her existing doctor will consider a new angle. It's sweet of you to take so much time with your reply!
Take care!
Leigh

Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Bingo Shannon. The bp symptoms sound all too familiar. Is it possible to be ADD and BP?

Arenace
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 249
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Leighanne, There is a great diet to follow for ADD too. It's not that she doesn't want to take the meds. If she is like my youngest son it's that he gets a symptom, up, down, busy, whatever, and it just doesn't reach the top of his "to do" list. It just doesn't seem that important to him. He doesn't mean to skip. It just happens. Hey, it has happened to mean, and I'm fanatical...
Bipolar brings new meaning to the "Little Ups And Downs Of Life!!"
 
Sandra


 


Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Point well taken Sandra. It seems like setting a child with ADD up for failure to expect them to remember ADD med. When she was young she'd let me remind her. Now if I ask about it it's considered "nagging".

sheryl=jk
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:46 AM (GMT -7)   
You saw what Shannon wrote you, does your daughter manifest any of these manic episodes in between being depressed, and have some normacly inbetween?..
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........


sheryl=jk
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/23/2005 7:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes Leigh its is very possible to have add and bipolar at the same time, soem can even have multiple disorders at the same time, is what they call dual diagnoses. I agree with Sandra on now its just another chore to take the med, I am scared I am in for the boat ride as ny kids get older, as they ill allow me to remind now, but what about when they get older. But if she can be convinced to see a new doc and try a different combo of meds and she see she is feelin g better maybe she wil be inspired to take them or at least be insoired enough to let you remind her to take them. Agreeing with Shannon its time she see a doc if she is doing poorly...
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........


Putter
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 8/23/2005 10:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Leigh,
 
I just wanted to post a quick reply and let you know that your story is a familiar one.

I don't know enough to comment on your daugter's symptoms, but it sounds like there is evidence to suggest that she needs to be reevaluated. I know this is far easier said than done. I was never diagnosed with BP until I had finished University just 2 years ago and had barely scraped through my last few semesters with all of the struggles trying to keep up. I always figured that I was lazy and just didn't have it in me to "keep it together" but turns out that I needed help. I wish I knew then what I know now. What you described is much of what I went through from about the time I turned 16.

You might want to get in touch with the student health department at your daughter's school (or even find them on the web and see what services they offer) and see if there is on-campus support for her and suggest that she make a visit. I know that many schools have counsellors and doctors that cater to students, and mental health is an area of growing focus. The big benefit of this type of program is accessiblity (usually no-charge) and they might have a coping strategy with counselling and/or medication that would help your daughter to stick to a more regular routine of treatment regardless of her diagnosis. They would also be able to refer her to academic counselling that might be available. Universities and colleges are becoming more aware that not everyone is the same and they can sometimes make alternative arrangements with schedules or course loads that might make it a easier for your daughter to keep up.

I've been lucky that I've been relatively responsive to medication and it has allowed me to live a more average lifestyle. I think that there are all sorts of ways to cope with these disorders, ADD/BP/etc, but medication can be the first step to gain some clarity in the madness of everyday life until you can find another way to manage the disorder through nutrition, lifestyle or otherwise.

Know that my thoughts are with you in your efforts and we're all here for support,

Putter


sheryl=jk
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Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/23/2005 1:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Putter has given you some good advice, hopefully the college can help, you will be in my thoughts and prayers as well.......
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........


psychnurse
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 8/23/2005 9:04 PM (GMT 0)   
Hi, Leighanne, sorry so long to post back.  Yes, there can be ADD/bipolar combined.  They are just so commonly mistaken for each other initially in evaluations.  I'm going to get you a link to a kind of test for BP, the symptoms I gave are rough; this test is very detailed.  You should then get a real feel for what is going on here, and show the doc if it is defo your daughter. 
 
 
Even tho you won't get an answer, these are the things other than distractability/irritability that happen with mania.

Post Edited (psychnurse) : 8/23/2005 3:13:21 PM (GMT-6)


psychnurse
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 8/23/2005 2:15 PM (GMT -7)   
And here's a test for Adult ADD, so you can compare and see if she has most of the bipolar AND the ADD, so you can get a better feel.  I do hope she can get help, if it's a combo she's going to need a particularly good psychiatrist.  Treatment for ADD is opposite of treatment for BP, so it's touch and go for awhile.

sheryl=jk
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/24/2005 3:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Leigh I agree with Shannon, I hope you find a good docter, especially if its combined, which it sounds like its, as my son is combined, and in our case we have elcted to primarily treat the bipolar and not the adhd, like Shanno said most reatment s for the adhd will worsen, or add will worsen the bipolar symptoms, bu I am finding that treating the bipolar in my son is helping with the adhd as well to some degree, and since the add in him is not effecting ihis grades whatsoever, we are choosing to wait on any treatment fo the add until it becomes a bigger issue, and it well may in the future as he wants to go to college as well, and may very wel need something to treat the add along with the bipolar, but for now I am leaving the add alone, adderal made him crazy, so did zoloft, and straterra only helped with attentivenss but not his mood swings. So I am guessing as he gets older and needs to treat the add as well as bipolar together he may need a different type of combo of meds, not sure what that would be at this point. I pray you can convice her to get reevaluted soon, and that she and the whole family will get some releif..Love...Sheryl
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........


Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/24/2005 6:03 AM (GMT -7)   
Have any of you ever lost any of your postings? I'm almost positive that I sent several replies yesterday that aren't showing today. Anyway, Putter did have a good suggestion about the University Health Care. I hope that when my daughter sees the bipolar test that Psycnurse sent that maybe she'll be convinced to try something different. And yes, she does have episodes of mania. Her dad is the only other person I've ever been around that can change so dramatically from seeming easy-going to becoming an out-of-control terror. I am so glad to finally find a group of people who understand what goes on in our home. The Cardiovascular forum has also been super sharing info for my younger daughter with heart problems. It would be so nice to finally get the right care for all of us! You all are great!
Take Care!
Leigh

psychnurse
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 8/24/2005 6:09 AM (GMT -7)   

I really hope she does decide to get help for it, it's a very dangerous illness that can and often does destroy lives without help.  Unfortunately, many of us deny the diagnosis and refuse treatment.   Or, we go on and off meds, because we dont' like to be brought down in any way.  I think you should, if she gets formally diagnosed bipolar, see a counselor that deals with BPs and help her understand the gravity of the disorder, so she can get help before she does damage to herself/relationships/financial matters.  Please continue to write in here and let us know how it's going, OK?  Know we are all here to support you, and hopefully she will write in as well.

Sincerely,

Shannon


Leighanne
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 8/24/2005 6:09 AM (GMT -7)   
BTW Sheryl, I got a chuckle out of your beer/milk story. Reminds me of my attempts to use reverse psychology with Claire. I think at 5 yrs. she was probably craftier than myself! This forum is additive. I've got to log off and get a few things done.
Catch ya later!
Leigh

sheryl=jk
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Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4083
   Posted 8/24/2005 11:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Glad you enjoyed my milk/ beer story, the sad thing at the tiem it wasnt funny, but looking back on its hillarious. I really hope you can convinve your daughter to seek help soon. Like Shannon says please keep us posted we are here to listen..hang in there.....
***Take Care.....Sheryl***
 
SERENITY PRAYER: "GOD GRANT ME THE SERENITY TO ACCEPT THE THINGS I CANNOT CHANGE; COURAGE TO CHANGE THE THINGS I CAN; AND THE WISDOM TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE........


psychnurse
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 807
   Posted 8/24/2005 1:31 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh, that story WAS hilarious!  Paranoid about milk breath!   I didn't see that earlier, or a lot of the threads, somehow my computer didn't take me there. 
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