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Ask Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH Your Ow...
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  Over 15 years of experience as a substance abuse therapist. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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My son is almost 16 & I feel he is exhibiting symptoms of bi-polar

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My son is almost 16 & I feel he is exhibiting symptoms of bi-polar disorder. He has lost half stone in weight saying sometimes he is starving other times not hungry at all. He has had probably 4 periods over past 12 months of being extremely low, so much so that I feared for his safety and his mood and expression was very dark and scary. during the last of these occasions he then became quite manic and began sewing frantically until he had made a handbag. He is awake during the night a lot and says he can be 'hper' very giddy one minute then drop to a low the next. He is paranoid quite a lot, feelikng like everyone is against him. He is very irritable, particularly with me and his youngert sister. He is also going through many sexual partners at the moment (he is gay), some he'll just meet then stay over with where no one knows where he is or who with and refuses to answer my calls / text. Person at our mental health team doesn't think symptoms are extreme enough for bipolar
Thank you for using I'm sorry to hear your son is going through this. I did not see a question per se in your response but I am guessing you are asking if he is bipolar? He does sound like he is experiencing symptoms of bipolar disorder. We can not diagnose disorders in this setting but I would definitely recommend getting a second opinion immediately. It sounds like his mood disorder may be causing him to act out sexually with multiple partners and this could be very dangerous if it continues particularly if you do not know where he is at night.

Besides the possible bipolar disorder, I am wondering if he is using drugs or alcohol? This could mimic bipolar disorder. If this is the case he would need to see an adolescent therapist/psychiatrist that specializes in substance abuse issues.

I hope this answer helps, please let me know if you have any other questions or if you need further clarification regarding this answer.

All the best,

Edited by Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH on 4/12/2010 at 12:43 AM EST
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