Postpartum Dispression and BiPolar Disorder
Approximately two weeks after my wife had our daughter, she had what myself and her family observed as a manic episode. I will say that have interacted with people who have had Bipolar Disorder before, not including my wife. However, I had not every knowingly seen a person going through an episode. The details provided are spoken of at a high level.
Since I and others were present during the episode, I decided to make notes of the things that were said, actions that were taken, and behaviors that were observed. One thing with my wife is that when talking to her, that she would make this face that I had never seen before. It was a face of confusion. Like I could see that she understood what I was saying to her, but her reasoning ability seemed to be limited or non-existent.
Now the plan is that after she has gone through recovery and is stable, to discuss these things with her in case she may have not been aware during portions of the episode and to see if there's a pattern or trigger. One thing that I have learned is that during an episode, some behaviors may or may not be remember and the actions taken by the individual may have been intentional or unintentional.
During the mania, there was a common theme that was being said. I did not notice it at first, but after discussing it with other family members, it was mentioned that there was a common theme and may need to look into that further. Oddly, there were some similarities between what was being said in this episode, and what was said during the previous episode.
In this scenario, it was related to religion. I found this article that talked about religion and Bipolar Disorder. It had some interested information, but ultimately it said that more studies were needed to understand if there is a link between Bipolar Disorder and being religious.
Making The Decisions
Making the decision to have a loved one be sent to a facility for treatment is not an easy one. What really made this worse was that it happened around the Christmas holidays. Thus being able to post pajama photos and those other Christmas traditions, were out.
Furthermore, having to relay the decision about being treated in-patient or out-patient, letting the loved one know why they are where they are, why you are having things done to them that they hate, and more are all difficult questions that you have to manage and resolve. I will say, it can be mentally be a challenge.
Not only does the person that has the episode need the support, but those that are overseeing and are being called on to make the decisions also need to have support as well. Having to alter ones lifestyle in a way that makes it temporary difficult does take a lot effort. Most do not talk about it, but it is a reality of things. Adding to that a newborn child and it really makes things more stressful for all of those involved.