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Therapy for My Child with Mental Illness

Therapy for My Child with Mental Illness

My son Bob began talk therapy at age eight after he knocked over a heavy wrought-iron barstool that ripped the back of my upholstered couch as it fell. Next he went upstairs and slammed the door to his room, putting a hole in the wall. Bob’s behavior got worse despite my best parenting efforts. He was a sweet kid, but his moods changed rapidly, resulting in damage and destruction. I didn’t know what to do, so I asked one of my mom friends for a referral.

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Diagnosing a Child with Mental Illness

Diagnosing a Child with Mental Illness

The moment my 12-year-old son ran out the front door, I locked it. The temperature that evening was 17 degrees. Bob was wearing basketball shorts, a tank top and no shoes. Earlier he was playing with knives and making threats. My mind struggled as he banged on the door begging me to let him in. Finally, I unlocked the back door to the basement and told him to go around the house. He slept downstairs (behind a locked door) while my family slept safely upstairs. The next day Bob was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

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Psychotherapy and Your Special Needs Child

Psychotherapy and Your Special Needs Child

Yesterday was National Psychotherapy Day according to Twitter.com. After doing some research, I discovered that it was the 2nd annual celebration and was founded by a group of clinicians, graduate students and supporters of psychotherapy in California (NationalPsychotherapyDay.com). The designation was designed to spread awareness about psychotherapy and reduce the stigma of seeking mental health treatment.

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Stigma Surrounding Psychiatric Medication

Stigma Surrounding Psychiatric Medication

It’s dark when I pull into the parking lot. I’m nervous–will he have what I need? Will the price have gone up? What if I can’t get it? How will I get through tomorrow–the next day, the day after that–if I don’t? My fears are unrecognized, but I can’t help noticing the smug, disapproving look on his face as he hands me what I came for.

This isn’t a back-alley drug deal; it’s a simple transaction between me and my pharmacist. So why do I still feel like a common junkie?

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How to Find a Psychiatrist for You or Your Child

How to Find a Psychiatrist for You or Your Child

My most recent post asked if a parent and child should see the same psychiatrist. The consensus was a resounding “NO.” (Honestly, can’t you people make anything easy?) Admittedly, upon giving the situation further thought, I’d rather preserve my flawless appearance with Bob’s psychiatrist and let someone else be privy to my hot-messiness.

And so the search begins. (Sigh.)

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Should Parent and Child See Same Psychiatrist?

Should Parent and Child See Same Psychiatrist?

I’ve been shopping for a new psychiatrist for my chronic severe depression and anxiety, and I think I’ve found a good one. Female, office nearby, personable, good reputation, and covered by my insurance.

There’s just one possible snag–she’s already seeing my son.

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Explaining Inpatient Psychiatric Treatment to Mentally Ill Child

Explaining Inpatient Psychiatric Treatment to Mentally Ill Child

This time of year, I am always reminded of the first half of 2008–the year I admitted Bob to inpatient psychiatric treatment not once, but twice. I suppose it’s because this is the same time of year, or because it’s the season when Bob experiences more manic-type symptoms. Apparently, it’s on Bob’s mind, too.

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More Inpatient Treatment for Mentally Ill Child

More Inpatient Treatment for Mentally Ill Child

Ongoing Problems Lead to a Second Inpatient Hospitalization

My recent posts have described my experiences with Bob and inpatient psychiatric treatment. I’m not sure why I’m revisiting that experience now, other than Bob’s currently doing relatively well and I don’t think I’ve previously detailed his hospitalizations here. Reading my own words, I’m amazed at how far we’ve come–and worried about the future.

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Mentally Ill Child Returns from Inpatient Hospitalization Worse, Not Better

Mentally Ill Child Returns from Inpatient Hospitalization Worse, Not Better

If you’ve read my previous posts about my son, Bob’s first inpatient psychiatric hospitalization at the age of 6, you may understand my mixed emotions surrounding his release after only six days. On one hand, I was happy to have my boy home, and to no longer be under the scrutiny of the hospital staff. On the other, I couldn’t help but think six days was a very short time to turn Bob into a “normal,” functional kindergarten student.

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When Mental Health Professionals Blame Parents for Child’s Mental Illness

When Mental Health Professionals Blame Parents for Child’s Mental Illness

If you read my previous post detailing Bob’s first inpatient admission to a psychiatric facility, you know I felt horrible about the decision, but hopeful Bob would get help. I also thought the hospital staff would see me as a concerned mother who wanted the best for her son. I had no idea what was actually in store for me and my husband.

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