Ask a Psychiatrist and Get Answers to Mental Health Questions ASAP
Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.
It is wonderful that you are there for your daughter. So many people with Bipolar struggle and family can make a big difference in how well they do. But while you are offering wonderful support, the toll it takes on your family can be enormous. Support is vital if families are going to be able to handle the stress.
People who suffer from Bipolar experience extreme highs and lows. It is quite common for someone to feel better on their medication and stop taking it. Or they reach a high and are unable to control their own behavior. Sexual promiscuity is a symptom of the extreme highs of Bipolar. Drug use may also help your daughter self medicate.
Learning more about Bipolar and getting support for yourself and the rest of your family are both great ways to help your daughter and yourselves at the same time. Here are several resources you can use to get started:
When Someone You Love Has a Mental Illness by Rebecca Woolis
The Family Intervention Guide to Mental Illness: Recognizing Symptoms and Getting Treatment by Bodie Morey and Kim T. Mueser
Helping Someone with Mental Illness: A Compassionate Guide for Family, Friends, and Caregivers by Rosalynn Carter and Susan Golant M.A.
The Burden of Sympathy: How Families Cope With Mental Illness by XXXXX XXXXX Karp
You can find the books on Amazon.com or your local library may have them for you.
You and your family can also see a therapist together or individually. To find a therapist, talk to your doctor about a referral. Or you can search on line at http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/. You can see a Master's Level therapist or a PhD. Here is a break down of the degrees:
M.A.- degree in theory
MEd- degree in counseling
MSW- degree in social work
LSW- the same but with a license
PHD -doctorate in therapy
When you pick out a therapist, it is important you feel comfortable with who you choose. Ask for referrals and be sure the therapist has experience with helping families coping with mental illness.
Although the links I gave you provide support group websites, you can also contact your local United Way for more resources in your area.
Let me know if I can help any further,
Yes, I think you do need to set limits with her. As long as you talk to her about getting help and offer her choices, you are being very fair to her. She is an adult and will need to learn how to cope with her illness, especially since there may not always be someone there for her. So developing supports, having contacts and understanding the resources available to her now, with your support, is vital so she can know how to get help. If you just enabled her, she will learn that she can act out and not have to get help.