Hi Sarah, I was just reading your posts and my heart goes out to you. It certainly sounds like you folks have a challenging life. I was just thinking about your post asking if its viable to live with the BP without medication. I don't want to sound like a pill pusher, but it certainly sounds like you folks have tried everything else humanly manageable. I think that my BP became a problem in my mid-late teens, and I feel like I would have saved myself a world of heartache if I had gotten help sooner. I don't know about being a child and being BP, but thinking back to the awful things that go through your head with BP raging, it must be awfully frightening for her.
I guess that I would just offer my perspective as a stable individual on mediciation. I use depakote which is relatively well tolerated, but it has been able to knock out the highs and given me a life that i'm certain I wouldn't have otherwsie. It has levelled the playing field for me so that I can deal with all of the other challenges in life and not have BP ruling my little world. I don't suffer any notable side effects and I hate the thought of ever living without it. There are lots of options with modern medication and I believe, in reading through other posts and forums, you might find that gaining control of one condition, ie. the bipolar, it might make another condition more tolerable and manageable. So, yes I do take drugs, but I don't consider it to be any different than a diabetic using insulin.
Please know that our hearts go out to you and I sincerely hope that you will be able to find a treatment (therapy, lifestyle, etc) that works for your daughter and your family.