Had to call 911 to help bipolar wife - need advice on how to proceed

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Redblueplumber
New Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 5/20/2017 7:06 PM (GMT -6)   
I suspect my wife has Bipolar II but she has not been formally diagnosed with it. She was diagnosed with major depression many years ago but I believe it has morphed into Bipolar II since then. She hates all doctors at this point and refuses to get help anymore. She was on Prozac for the better part of 10 years and it helped some. She quit medication in October of last year. Things have become progressively worse since then. She's spoken openly about suicide and hating life for several months, off and on. Usually only during the lows. 2 days ago she snapped and destroyed most of our kitchen before I was able to restrain her. She kept yelling I don't want to be here, I don't want be here! When she calmed down enough for me to let her go she went into the bedroom and proceeded to destroy most of it as well. After restraining her yet again and waiting until she calmed down I let her go and she went into the corner of the room and slouched against the wall and began to sob uncontrollably. Bellows of agony and pain. I myself began to lose it at this point. I also began to cry because I could see how much pain she was in. I tried talking to her but she would not respond and kept sobbing. I've never been so scared and unsure of what to do. I immediately called a friend to ask if I should call 911, she said yes without hesitation, so I hung up and called 911. When the police came it took them 25 minutes to get anything out of her. They ended up getting just enough from her, in conjunction with my story, to take her and hold her for 24 hours at a hospital that has a behavioral services department. Fast forward one day and she is transferred to a different mental health hospital and is on a 72 hour hold now with them while they evaluate and treat her. The night I sent her to the hospital she sent me a very nasty text right before they took her phone away. She says I abandoned her like a stray dog, among many other harsh things I cannot post here. I am told that it was the bipolar speaking and not to take it to heart. I know from previous conversations that my wife's biggest fear is to be in a hospital like she is right now. I'm afraid she will never forgive me. Even if it was mostly the bipolar talking in that text message she sent, I can't shake the feeling a small part of the real her was shining through. My fear right now is that when she comes home she won't want anything to do with me. She has been in the hospital for over two days and she will not let me contact her. Due to HIPAA rules I cannot talk to her or her doctors. I'm sorry this post is so long winded.

My question is how should I handle the situation when she finally is released? Should I apologize to her for calling 911 and putting her in her worst nightmare or should I stand firm by the decision even if it's obvious when I see her that she is still upset about it? What should I say, how should I act? I was only trying to protect her but she thinks I betrayed her, backstabbed her, threw her away like a piece of garbage. I've tried to get in to see a counselor or therapist this weekend to get some advice before she is released but it's proving to be quite difficult to see a professional on such short notice, that's why I'm posting on these forums. Thank you for reading this and I am grateful for any advice or guidance in this very difficult time. sad

Post Edited (Redblueplumber) : 5/20/2017 7:13:29 PM (GMT-6)


Tim Tam
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2016
Total Posts : 1024
   Posted 5/21/2017 11:55 AM (GMT -6)   
It does sound like a very difficult situation, for her and for you.

Be thankful there are emergency personnel who are able and willing to deal with situations like this, or you'd be in big trouble right now.

As a bipolar II, myself, I think you handled it about as well as it could have been handled, probably better than a lof of ways it might have been handled or miss-handled.

I think calling a friend and getting her advice was the key.

At first, I thought, well she’s torn up all the rooms she can tear up, maybe she’s OK now.

But then when the cops came and took her to the hospital, I thought, well, yeah, that’s the best thing. Otherwise, she’s not going to a hospital.

So, again, you can thank the cops for that, and the hospital. And yourself, and that woman you called.

Now, that she’s in the hospital for a few days it looks like, maybe they can get her diagnosed and medicated. Wouldn’t that be great?

1. You say, ““I suspect my wife has Bipolar II but she has not been formally diagnosed with it. She was diagnosed with major depression many years ago but I believe it has morphed into Bipolar II since then.”

How are you able to diagnose her with Bipolar II (the worse of the two bipolars) but the doctors are not? I’m not saying it couldn’t happen, but I’m just wondering, how you came to that conclusion?

2. You say, “She was on Prozac for the better part of 10 years and it helped some.” Prozac is an anti-depressant which helps very well with anxiety, the net says.

You said the Prozac “helped some.” How was that? Did it calm her down and get her undepressed? Did she have any bad times? Did she have any anxiety attacks (although the net says it helps reduce or stop anxiety attacks).

What were the times like when Prozac didn’t help?

One thing, in my opinion, of what could be going on here is that, if you’re right, she’s Bipolar II (and not just depressed as the psychiatrist(s) said), is that she was mis-diagnosed, and therefore, miss-medicated.

That could be why the Prozac worked “some” but maybe not enough. Because, she wasn’t getting the right medicine, is a possible.

What can happen with Bipolar is, they come into the psychiatrist’s office depressed. The psy. diagnoses them as depressed. Wrong! He gives them an anti-depressant, with no treatment for the mania (like I take, Lithium).

They can then go from depressed to manic. Because why? They’ve been miss-diagnosed, and therefore miss-medicated. Or, they’ve been given an anti-depressant (for the depression), but no “mood stabilizer, like Lithium) to slow down the anti-depressant and to treat the mania.

This is from what I’ve experienced as a Bipolar, and from what I’ve read on the net.

With the Prozac only working “some,” she may have gotten upset that it was not working enough, and went off of it.

If you think she has mania also, I think you need to tell the doctors that, and that you think she’s bipolar and why. You can print out signs of bipolar, check the ones she has, and take that list to the doctors, is one idea. Assuming they are going to get it right, hasn’t worked to this point.

Also, has she had any trauma? I’m bipolar, but I don’t tear up my kitchen. But then I’m also on Lithium, which has kept me from that, but two road rage situations, even with the Lithium, so I can do anger, also.

So, she’s not being treated with Lithium, or the other 2 or 3 such meds, so it could be her anger from the untreated mania.

Or it could be trauma. My now deceased wife was sexually abused, and she had a lot of anger, but she was not bipolar. Your wife could have trauma and bipolar, just a guess.

You say, “She hates all doctors at this point and refuses to get help anymore.” Would she consider seeing a female psychiatrist? All of my doctors are females, so I know something about that.

You could be looking into finding her a good female psychiatrist.

You can look them up in the computer yellow pages, pick one, and if you don’t like her, get another one. Also, you can call a few hospitals in your area, and ask if they have a women’s health center, then ask if they might have a female psy. that they might recommend.

You said, “She quit medication in October of last year. Things have become progressively worse since then.”

You can’t talk with her doctors, but you can find out at some point how she’s been diagnosed, and if it doesn’t come out Bipolar, or other things, you can get another doctor. Of course, you’ll have to get another one anyway, I don’t think she can keep going back there.

You said, “When the police came it took them 25 minutes to get anything out of her. They ended up getting just enough from her, in conjunction with my story, to take her and hold her for 24 hours at a hospital that has a behavioral services department. Fast forward one day and she is transferred to a different mental health hospital and is on a 72 hour hold now with them while they evaluate and treat her”

Be thankful she’s getting some treatment. There will be some more hurdles, probably, but if you can be looking for a psy. in the meantime, that might help.

You say, “My question is how should I handle the situation when she finally is released? Should I apologize to her for calling 911 and putting her in her worst nightmare or should I stand firm by the decision even if it's obvious when I see her that she is still upset about it? What should I say, how should I act?”

You should act like a person who acted in her best interest and did the best you could to get her some help. With the right meds, she’s probably not going to be the same person who walks back through the door, as she was when she left. So hopefully that won’t be a problem. One day she may thank you for this. It probably won’t be anytime soon, but just having her back may be enough.

I would try to stay positive through all of this. Having a positive mindset that this can turn out as well as can be expected, helps, I’ve found of late.

Having a negative mindset from the start that this and other problems will probably turn out poorly, increases the chances that will it go that way, also.

I now try to say to myself, “One problem at a time, and be positive about that problem.”

UserANONYMOUS
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 4384
   Posted 5/22/2017 6:51 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Redblueplumber,

Welcome to the forum!

When you wife is released, tell her the truth. Let her know that you care about her that is why you called 911 since you did not want her to hurt her self.

During the Bipolar phase, people can sometimes say things.If she does not want help, there isn't much any one can do. Unless the situation escalates and you need to call 911. Firstly, she must be willing to accept help.

You are very supportive to her through this. This is nice of you. However, this can also be a lot for you to handle. Remember to take care of yourself. Ensure that you are safe.
Please know that we are here for you.

UA
Moderator - Bipolar
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