HeatherRose

Coming from a family with mental health issues--all taking meds

6 posts in this topic

hi. I have not started a new  topic however i have to ask how many of you come from a family history of mental illness? My family is rampant with it. My cousins and aunts are all on psych meds of different types. My mom has schizzoaffective disorder and an organic brain disorder--my father had bipolar disorder and alcohol addiction. Explaining what I am doing with my medications and also about SA to my family has been tricky as they are all very medication oriented and also have seen me at my worst and are afraid when I tell them I am working on some medication stuff. They are afraid i will go into psychosis or "spin out" into mania or worse.

 

So here is my big question: If you are from a family where mental illness is heavy or prominent how do you put it to your family that you are working on med withdrawal research and finding what fits?

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At least 3 genetic generations here, plus raised with plenty of neurosis too.

 

Grandmother found Great-Grandmother's suicide.

 

Next generation included a bigamist, a bag lady, and an OCD naval officer, and a chameleon (everyone said, nobody knew who he was, he presented a different "face" to everyone he met).  But they were never drugged, just considered "eccentric."

 

Current generation includes depression, anxiety and some social dysfunctions - maybe some Asperger's type stuff too.

 

Ironically, all the drugs have been on the neurotic side who raised me (my adopted = real family).  Mother has been on xanax for 25 years, my brother takes xanax and lexapro, probably on drugs for at least 20 years.  

 

It's not the diagnosis that determines who you are.

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No for sure! My family has problems all the way back to at least as far as my great-grandfather who, my mom's cousin tells me, died in a mental institution when another patient stabbed him for taking his eggs at breakfast. Not sure if this is entirely true but my grandpa prewett had shock treatments in the 40's when it was REALLY bad and then there is my dad who i dont' know where all his stuff came from.

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Epigenetics.

 

I look at - what was happening to the parents when the baby was in the womb?  What was happening to their parents that was passed on to them?

 

Like - even though my parents suffered the depression - somehow this depression-era thinking (hoarding, scrimping, saving) is hard wired into me, too.  

 

A child who was "inconvenient" or "unwanted" would receive those chemicals in the womb as an epigenetic insult.  It makes me wonder - as I was given up for adoption - how conflicted my birthmother was about me.  Did she waver - think about keeping me?  Or not?  I know at one point, her childless sister wanted to adopt me (I'm so glad that didn't happened, she was ****-and-span Navy OCD!).  She had other children before me, and another son after me - so what must her feelings have been while she was pregnant with me?  It would have affected me just as much as the fact that I was ripped from her and motherless for the first 9 months of my life.

 

I've looked at wars a lot.  My father, raised in extreme poverty, was also the son of a WW1 veteran who was gassed in the trenches.  How did this make him who he was?  What did he pass along to me, of this "fear of survival?"

 

Just some thoughts on a Sunday afternoon....

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i dont want to discount anyones situation or make it trivial.

 

but i think we should take some power back from psychiatrist and doctors and not believe everything were told ,believing them has us having to deal with the  fall out of these drugs.

 

the DSM has a lot to answer for here ,the go to book for psychiatrist and before we know it we have the diagnosis from a questioner, and then a label. we are human beings not our labels in my opinion .

 

absolutely no one is perfect and life can b tough at times, I am working on stopping my perfectionist ways because I realise were it comes from and its working .

I believe the negative self talk we have starts form very young ,parents ,teachers ,people in authority talking us down for what ever reason and we soak it up like a sponge.

I believe we need to stop letting people label us and believe our hearts .

 

I'm very interested in ancestry,  the way each generation talks to the next and its past on down like that .my situation mirrors my fathers growing up. I stand   corrected but I don't see a definitive test out there to tell us what we have  is %100 true .

 

I believe psychiatry has a purpose ,I've benefitted from it ,but there's many critics of it out there and its labels. PETER BREGGIN its most famous . 

 

 I mean no offence to anyone's situation.  

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Amen! 

 

The truth is, you can look back, and sometimes you get an "aha!" when you look at family history.

 

Sometimes, you can feel more compassion for those who messed you up.

 

Sometimes, it's more constructive to look forward and think about, "what can I do next?"

 

But I do not think it is pure genes.  That is the way of eugenics, and I reject that.

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