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bipolar and anorexia(7 Posts)
My DD who is 13 was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at Christmas. I've been asking since she was 7 for help, I knew her emotional highs and lows were far more than normal. When she turned 13 and the hormones kicked in it was more than I and the rest of the family could take. But generally bipolar just doesn't seem to be recognised in under 18's - the doctors seem to think that people just wake up with bipolar on their 18th birthday! She now has anorexia too, as apparently bipolar and eating disorders often go hand in hand. Does anyone have any experience of either as this is awful for her, and I'm at the end of my tether. Thanks in advance.
I had a bipolar diagnosis at 13 (I'm now 28 and it's changed to something else now, which also might be wrong, but bipolar was definitely the right diagnosis then, maybe it's just dormant now who knows) it wasn't common then, I was inpatient several times in different hospitals and only ever met one other bipolar teen. They weren't quite sure what to do with me, adolescent services seen to be able to cope with depression, anxiety and eating disorders and that's about it, and not even always well for then. Makes sense for bipolar to go with eating disorders, it also often goes with substance abuse and self harm (the way I went) they're all different strategies to try to feel in control when you don't feel in control of your emotions/feelings.
I'm not sure what help I can offer except to say I'm very well now, happy, great job, great partner, still have some ups and downs but general well, some anxiety and mood swings but very manageable. I'm no longer on any medication. If there's anything I can help with please let me know.
Thank you so much for your message - you have no idea how much that helped! It's good to know that you got through the worst of it and are now living a much happier life.
My daughter has improved quite a bit since writing my original post. She has discovered horse riding which she loves and it seems to bring her real inner peace, and also the medication finally seems to be the right balance. I have everything crossed that things continue to improve for her.
I wish you all the best for the future. And thank you again xx
Hi recently my 24 year old daughter has been diagnosed with bipolar very difficult time as being a adult hard to keep her safe
Hi, I cannot help with the bipolar part but my 9 year old was just diagnosed with anorexia, she is also a perfectionist and has high anxiety which i was told puts a child at higher risk of an eating disorder, my daughter was only diagnosed 2 weeks ago and I am still trying to get my head around it, she is currently in hospital. Just wanted to let you know you are not alone
Hi, You most certainly are not alone. Our 13 year old daughter was discharged from an Eating Disorders Unit this weekend; she'd spent 12 weeks there, with 3 weeks prior to that in a general paeds ward in our local hospital; she'd been ill for six months prior to that and has asperger syndrome...her strive for perfection and rigidity is what led to the onset of anorexia.
Top tip from me is to read Eva Musby's book 'Anorexia and other Eating Disorders: how to help your child eat well and be well: Practical solutions, compassionate communication tools and emotional support for parents of children and teenagers.'
Good luck and much love to you xx
This is a bit late but just thought the bit about horseriding was interesting! I'm 16 and have been riding since I was 4 but then quit aged 12, and developed anorexia aged 13. It was an uphill battle and then when I was 14 I started having riding lessons again, and realised I'd forgotten how much I missed it. My eating disorder was still bad, but I had put on weight for the first time in months because of the riding. After a while I missed the whole looking after a horse thing too, and I begged my parents for my own pony. I finally persuaded them after about 6 months, and I got a pony on loan. It seemed to make sometjing click (no amount of CAMHS had ever really made a difference and I'd been narrowly avoiding IP for years) I think it turned the focus from weight and food to having the responsibility of a horse to look after and ride. It also helped my confidence and anxiety loads because I met loads of new people on the yard we keep my pony on and felt much more relaxed around them than my school friends. In about 3 months I was at a healthy weight and discharged from the clinic. My eating disorder is still there but it's very much overpowered by my horse.
I'm not sure this was helpful at all but saw the thing about riding helping her and I'm basically trying to say you should definitely encourage it! 😌
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