Monday, March 23, 2009

Are you in Denial?

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Denial is a defense mechanism postulated by Sigmund Freud, in which a person is faced with a fact that is too uncomfortable to accept and rejects it instead, insisting that it is not true despite what may be overwhelming evidence. [1] The subject may deny the reality of the unpleasant fact altogether (simple denial), admit the fact but deny its seriousness (minimization) or admit both the fact and seriousness but deny responsibility (transference).

I am a nurturer, strongly believing in love. I love thinking any problem can be conquered with a positive outlook.

Bipolar disorder got the best of me as did denial.

My love for my son and husband would not make bipolar disorder go away. I could no longer make excuses for Dad when he knew his son’s diagnosis and still would not seek medical attention. Dad has always shown the symptoms of BP; drifting in and out of being OK, working non-stop, sleeping non-stop and self-medicating.

What it all came down to is I could not continue to be the “care giver” for my undiagnosed husband. I felt I was enabling a grown man to continue his denial. Dad would not recognize how much his denial and dysfunction hurt his son.

The night of our son's 13th birthday I locked Dad out of our home. Dad had been impatient and irritable with us all day as he was every day. In the evening when it came time to sing "Happy Birthday" and blow the candles on the cake, our son was in emotional duress. So Dad decides to threaten him with a cigarette lighter, lighting the flame and holding it close to his arm. As if this action would surely help our son enjoy his birthday cake!

I went into Mommy protector mode and never looked back. I would not allow Dad back in the house, I filed a restraining order against him on my son's behalf and I filed for divorce.

My actions forced his Dad to finally seek medical attention and counseling. Two years after our son's diagnosis, Dad, was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.

The good news is as we are approaching our son's 18th birthday, Dad has become an advocate for mental health, his son's and his own.

If you love someone with Bipolar Disorder seek help and make a plan for recovery.

If you need more information on mood disorders the following websites offer extensive knowledge:

No comments: