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To be totally miffed at this? Family member with MH issues

(36 Posts)
Charlie97 Thu 17-Jan-13 05:53:04

I have a sister who is extremely unwell at the moment, she is bi polar and has a personality disorder! SHe has not been taking her meds and for the first time in 15 years has become a danger to herself and others!

I spotted this early on, tried to talk and get her to attend drs, to no avail. So I took control of the situation, I contacted her GP also my GP, explained my worries! My GP is wonderful and also confirmed her worries and that my sister needed a mental health assessment! So cutting a long story short! A very very stressful 10 days ensued! Police involvement, lots of anger from my sister to me, lots of dashing round to various places to ensure my sister was safe, not harmed herself etc etc!

I am pleased to say that last Friday, she was taken to hospital and is safe! Refusing to see family at the moment, but once things have settled down that will change!

I am now met with the drama of the rest of my family, who did sod all! And now saying to me, don't you feel bad you did that? No, I don't, should I? I had to take control to ensure everyone was safe, my sister has suicidal tendencies and things were escalating alarmingly! A mental health assessment is a medical decision, not me ringing and having the power to throw someone in an institution as it was 200 years ago!

In short I am being made to feel wrong, this is now that my sister is safe and well! Before that I was being harassed every five minutes to get things sorted!

I have had to get up and leave my office twice to rush 10 miles to deal with situations! And loads of other stuff outside work hours!The others have done nothing!

In short I was damed if I did and damned if I didn't!

I feel to call a family meeting and explain this all to them and that we are all responsible to try and ensure that our sister does not get this ill again!

I would call a meeting, but I am so bloody angry at their now whoa are us attitude, that I can't be bothered to see them!

I hope I don't come across as heartless, I'm not, but my sister as a doctor and social worker said was extremely unwell and is now receiving treatment, she will now get better!

I think my family are uncomfortable with mental health issues and don't see that this situation was the same as if she had a physical life threatening illness! She needed hospital care!

AIBU to feel outraged by the rest of the family?

DozyDuck Thu 17-Jan-13 06:00:31

YANBU and very kind to your sister

Homebird8 Thu 17-Jan-13 06:08:27

I think you did the right thing for your sister. It does sound as if your family has problems in seeing her illness as just that. DSis being in hospital, which is the right place for someone as ill as her at the moment, is in no way a judgment on her character, or something to protect her from, or manage without, or avoid.

I think you need a mantra to repeat. Something along the lines of 'I believe DSis needed hospital treatment and the doctors agreed. I love my sister and care about helping her to be as well as possible. I know you feel the same.'

I'd take a few days, secure in the knowledge that DSis is getting the care she needs, before thinking about a family meeting. Are they bothering you about it or are you worried about what they are saying to each other about your actions?

Well done Charlie thanks

Theala Thu 17-Jan-13 06:11:45

no. you totally did the right thing with regards to your sister so well done.

Charlie97 Thu 17-Jan-13 06:13:53

Thank you! I have cried, really cried! This is the first time thru all this that I have cried! My sister is ill, my sister is safe! My sister will now recover! You are right about the mantra!

When she was ill, she did some dreadful out of character things, she will have to face those! Was it right to let her go along like y
This, with more things to have to deal with when she got better.

I feel better already!

Thank you x

HecateWhoopass Thu 17-Jan-13 06:38:19

You did the right thing. You did the brave thing.

You possibly saved your sister's life, if she has suicidal thoughts and things were spinning out of control.

I am sure that when she is through this, she will thank you.

But whatever happens - you did what needed to be done when nobody else had the courage.

WynkenBlynkenandNod Thu 17-Jan-13 06:53:25

You have absolutely done the right thing and it's very sad that the rest of the family aren't supporting you. My Mum is in the process of being diagnosed with Dememtia and I know how hard it is trying toget help in place to keep someone vulnerable safe. My brother remains in denial to some extent. I think there's often one person who gets what needs to be done and gets on with it whilst the rest faff around, not because they don't care but because the way ti access help feels unpatable to some due to how the system works.

If it makes you feel any better I wrote a letter this week to SS withdrawing as a carer for my Mother and felt like the world's worse daughter . I had to do it though to protect my MH and ensure Mum gets the help needed to be safe at home. You've done what absolutely had to be done. I'd leave a family meeting for a little bit until you've had a chance to recover from what you've been through and then talk to the rest of them. If they are still not getting it contact your surgery again and see if they have a Tracker Nurse who might be able to have a word with them so they start getting it. Well done .

rumbelina Thu 17-Jan-13 06:58:53

I have been involved in similar but on a much smaller scale and for a friend and it was fricking awful - even though all friends and her family were supportive of what we did. So I cannot imagine how shit you are feeling now getting grief about it.

You know you did the right thing and the alternative was much worse. Hold on to that.

Don't hurry to hold the family meeting. Maybe draft a letter (and then again when you feel less angry).

Moominsarescary Thu 17-Jan-13 07:15:45

You dd the right thing, she wouldn't have gotten better on her own. I'm sure once she is well again she will see that and appreciate what you did.

As for other members of the family if they keep asking if you feel guilty just say no. That you would have felt much worse if you had left things and she had hurt herself and obviously it was the best thing to do as she is now safe.

My best friend has bpd and when she is unwell she is like a different person. When she is first admitted she can be pretty withdrawn an I don't see her for months. I trained as a mh nurse and took to hanging around the smoking garden to bump into her, she was always happy to see me there but no way would she agree to having people on visit on the ward in the begining.

I hope your dsis is well soon.

bumasbigasthetv Thu 17-Jan-13 18:34:12

You did the right thing.

Ambivalence Thu 17-Jan-13 18:42:06

As someone who is bipolar, and has had to stay in hospital (once, in a mixed episode, I went in voluntarily, and was diagnosed as bipolar in hospital), you absolutely did the right thing.

I have been switching my meds recently (under supervision of a psychiatrist) and was very grateful that my sister, mum and finance all pointed out when I was getting unwell.

Once she is better your sister will be very grateful to you for your help. the problem with bipolar is the more episodes one has/ the longer it is left untreated, the worse the prognosis. So it is not just the suicidal ideas, but you really do help by “nipping it in the bud” or as early as you can.

gordyslovesheep Thu 17-Jan-13 18:43:55

YANBU - My sis is Bi polar - thankfully under control for the past 15 years but you did the right thing and I am sorry your family are being so bloody silly x

McNewPants2013 Thu 17-Jan-13 18:48:10

well done Charlie.

you got the help your sister was in urgent need for, if your family cant see that than i am glad your sister has you.

DeepRedBetty Thu 17-Jan-13 18:56:52

The only thing yabu about is using exclamation marks at the end of every sentence grin

Really pleased dsis is safe, and sad that the rest of your family don't seem to realise that getting someone admitted is actually incredibly hard work, what with the chronic under-funding of MH services. There's no way she would have been admitted if she didn't have a genuine crisis level need.

Best wishes for a speedy return to health for her, and here's some biscuit biscuit biscuit to virtually chuck at your twit relatives.

MammaTJ Thu 17-Jan-13 19:01:55

I worked in a psychiatric hospital and know that once people are on the road to recovery their resentment turns to gratitude.

I work with someone, she is also a friend, who has bi polar, she has been grateful too when people have stepped in to help her.

HoratiaWinwood Thu 17-Jan-13 19:03:43

Is your full stop key broken? All the exclamation marks make your OP hard to read.

I don't understand why it was particularly your responsibility to get help for your sister. I don't understand what reservations the rest of your family have.

I hope your sister is well again soon.

Moominsarescary Thu 17-Jan-13 20:10:03

How do exclamation marks make an op hard to read hmm

TandB Thu 17-Jan-13 20:15:43

I think the OP can be allowed a few exclamation marks given what she's just had to cope with.

You did the right thing, OP. Hospital beds aren't exactly in plentiful supply - if they've admitted her then she clearly needed to be admitted.

Emzfilbert Thu 17-Jan-13 20:26:07

As someone with bi polar I can say in my opinion you absolutely did the right thing. In the past I have been sectioned following my family's intervention which at the time I found really hard to take and was very angry but without their intervention I could be dead now rather than happily married with a beautiful 6 month old daughter.

SirBoobAlot Thu 17-Jan-13 20:26:47

Your sister is lucky to have someone willing to take the needed steps to put her care first.

Your family have the attitude they are will not be helpful for you, or for your sister whilst she is ill.

Take care of yourself now whilst she is in hospital.

sukysue Thu 17-Jan-13 20:34:25

Well done op your sis is getting the treatment she needs sod your family weaklings by the sound of it.

Charlie97 Thu 17-Jan-13 20:48:42

Thanks all, feel a lot better about it all today. Especially with all these positive comments. I know in my heart I did the right thing, it started on Boxing Day, it was just a "feeling" I had then, nothing I can say specific. By the 9th jan it had reached a critical level, with very extreme behaviour, so imagine how it would have been had it continued by now.

Spoke to hospital today and she is still unwilling to see me, I do know this will change!

But already, they are considering moving her from the high dependency ward, maybe middle of next week. So that's positive.

The family have obviously picked up on my feelings, they have been texting most of the day and being very positive.

Thanks for all your positive comments, I hope soon her meds are sorted and everything will be better for her.

All that and only one! grin


StormyWeek Thu 17-Jan-13 20:54:21

Wow Horatia, you don't seem to "understand" anything. Maybe you should ignore the thread!!!!

Charlie, you've done the best thing for your sister and she will be so thankful. My mum flashed her boobs at the local priest, told everyone my Dad had been promoted, and donated huge amounts of money we didn't have, to charity, in one of her many manic phases. She's now bi-polar, rather than back then being a manic-depressive. Different name, same shit storm. She never remembers the mad stuff she does, which is GOOD.

Your families reaction is wierd and depressing. I don't think you should engage with them just yet- they have no right to berate you.

People like your sister, in her state, need others to take care of them. Yu did the right thing. Repeat the mantra, and rest easy x

Charlie97 Thu 17-Jan-13 21:00:16

Elmsfilbert that is great, a true reflection that mental health illness, is like a physical illness, it just needs the right meds to make life liveable.

Sadly, there is still too much ignorance of mental illness, too many people fear talking about it.


Charlie97 Thu 17-Jan-13 21:02:22

On horatio, the reason I had to deal with it, was because someone needed to take control!

In fairness, one person needs to be coordinating things, that was me. But I would have welcomed some support in the back ground.

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