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Do you have family members with a mental illness?

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There has been very little diagnosed MI in my family. There is no diagnosed mental illness on my dad's side whatsoever, but my Pappap (dad's dad) was an alcoholic until he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 1989. My dad has EXTREME anger issues, but feels completely justified in all his actions. He also never apologizes and is very emotionally removed/socially awkward (unless he has a few beers in him). He'll talk to you about music and cars, but bring up something like a bad break-up with a boyfriend or a manic spending spree, and his jaw drops because he is so uncomfortable.

As for my mom's side, well,... I know a few of my aunts take ADs. My cousin killed herself in 1997; she had MDD. My mom is also diagnosed with MDD. I have the most dx's of anyone, but thankfully I have lived through all of it (so far anyway).

I think my sister has some sort of MI, but doesn't want to be on medications because of the stigma MI has. She is very much like my dad, even though she claims she is just like my mom. ???

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Dad - Alcoholic, Major Depression (diagnosed my my first pdoc)

Mom - Minor Depression (suspected) / Postpartum Depression (diagnosed)

Sister - Depression, Minor Psychotic symptoms (diagnosed)

Bother - Mild Depression on and off (suspected)

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I'm the first in the family to be diagnosed with MI.

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Posted (edited)

My sister is some kind of insane, not sure what. Official dx is bipolar. Clearly some kind of personality/coping issues though. She is just fucked up in lots of ways, like a female version of my father sans alcohol use.

My father has a bit of a drinking problem and when he was younger would go on anxious paranoid rages. He would tear up the house looking for something insignificant while accusing people of hiding it from him. He would shake a lot and he never slept well. He could scarcely tolerate being out in public due to his intense anxiety (e.g. he would visibly sweat and shake on lines in stores).

He also tends to get depressed a bit, nothing catastrophic and obvious, but he goes through his days or moments of lying about in despair. From what I can tell my father has severe anxiety and an alcohol problem and is generally slightly nuts. He uses alcohol to ward off depression and to ward off his anxiety. Alcohol keeps my father sane.

My father's brother killed himself a few months after I was born in april. Easter sunday I think. He was clearly depressed, but didn't seem to have any anxiety like my dad. He was traumatized by their childhood probably (raised in a catholic orphanage).

My father's father was a war veteran and also insane, probably stress induced. For obvious reasons my father never talks about his family but what little I know about his father is that he also had terrible anxiety like my dad (possibly worse), psychosis, as well as depression. This was when tranquilizers were invented and my grandfather lived on them, because of his debilitating anxiety similar to my father's. He was known to occasionally go cracked out and psychotic - my father told me about a time his dad tried to go out and control traffic in the street. My father attributes his father's insanity to PTSD, but I don't think that's likely since my grandfather's symptoms were not very much like PTSD, had nothing to do with war, and are very similar to the sort of symptoms my father (his son) has (severe anxiety and depression). I do think that war stress may have been the trigger that made my grandpa go nuts for serious, though.

My father's mother was schizophrenic and lived/died in a psych ward. She went cracked for serious when my dad was like 7 yrs old and so dad and his brother were raised in an orphanage (thus the trauma I spoke of before). My father blames his mother's schizophrenia on the toxic chemicals in the factories she worked in. She was extremely paranoid and had the kids taken away because she was a danger to them.

No my grandma and grandpa weren't genetically related. THey came from different countries to be double sure. Just bad luck I guess. Or living in the northeast, heh.

--------------------------------------

My mother's family also has mood problems. My mother has a tendency to depression and has a few significant episodes. I have been told by my aunts that her father also has this same depression, but he never had any major breakdowns or anything. His family there were some "attic bound" relatives as back in those days you just locked crazy people in the attic so no one knows what was up with that.

My mother's sister has had anxious breakdowns, and her other sister has had depression w. atypical signs like sleeping tons and eating sweet stuff but neither are significantly depressive. My mom probably has the worst most significant depression out of all her sisters, and she is the most like her father in personality and appearance.

I think my depression is very much genetic and very much inherited from my mother. I am a carbon copy clone of my mother physically. My personality is extremely similar to hers. Is it coincidence that I also have this same struggle with depression? It's almost as if depression is just part and parcel of having my mother's genetics. Same shaped face, same personality, same art talent, same days of staring into the void for no reason. It's part of the bag of treats you get with these genes it seems.

The only grandparent who is NOT insane at all would be my mother's mother... and even though she was without any mental problem, she was eccentric as HELL, double aquarius, if that lets you know anything. She was a tough woman and very unconventional. Her mother came from a tribe and had tattoos all over her face, she refused to let my grandmother be tattooed because she knew that was the old tribal way - this was extremely unconventional at the time, so clearly that against the grain independent forward thinking was evident even in my great grandmother.

So, basically, it would be easier to tell you which family members are SANE. One of my sisters is sane, my brother is sane, my grandmother was sane. My anxious aunt's kids seem sane but are weird as fucking hell , don't know them too well (one is a drunk and an asshole, the other two seem normal enough). My other aunt's daughter is psycho but she is more like her father (who also is crazier than a shit house rat and recently had a psychotic breakdown, no genetic relation).

Everyone else is slightly or extremely crazy.

Reading this back, it sounds like Dr Evil talking about his family.

Edited by OscillateWildly

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This is hysterical and totally mimics my family.

  • My sister is some kind of insane, not sure what. Official dx is bipolar. Clearly some kind of personality/coping issues though.
  • when he was younger would go on anxious paranoid rages. He would tear up the house looking for something insignificant while accusing people of hiding it from him. He would shake a lot and he never slept well.
  • My father's father was a war veteran and also insane, probably stress induced.
  • My mother has a tendency to depression and has a few significant episodes.
  • It's almost as if depression is just part and parcel of having my mother's genetics. Same shaped face, same personality, same art talent, same days of staring into the void for no reason. It's part of the bag of treats you get with these genes it seems.
  • So, basically, it would be easier to tell you which family members are SANE.
  • Reading this back, it sounds like Dr Evil talking about his family.

I totally understand. It's my understanding that borderline, bipolar, autism, ocd, add, all run in genetic packs in families.

Me:

I am OCD/ADD/GAD/and a dash of PTSD (from the unmedicated fam.)

Sister#1:

We share both parents. She has OCD 'with psychotic episodes', ADD, Social Anxiety, Borderline personality disorder, and "chronic and distemic depression" which apparently means that her baseline mood is below normal and she is chronically so. She is completely and utterly fucked up. Is prone to horrible abusive relationships, random bouts of temper, and hears a lot of damning voices. She also works with autistic children and uses her chronic fucked-up-ness in a way that she is what I call the autism whisperer. she works with severely autistic kids who are barely verbal and understands them in ways that routinely shock professionals around her.

Sister#2:

We share a father. She has generalized anxiety and panic attacks. And she sleepwalks. Like pick-up-the-roller-blades-at-3-am-and-go-outside kind of sleepwalking.

Dad:

My Pdoc thinks my father was borderline - or most likely NPD. I vote NPD. there is no way to underestimate his granidose sense of self, belief that he is 'special' and only other 'special' people can get him, and his belief that the rules are different for him. he was a terrible womanizer, and does not mentally age well. I know he still thinks he is in his twenties. He is almost 60. we dont talk.

Mom:

Suspicioned OCD, Anxiety

Mom refuses to believe she has any problems. but she is ripe with them. she is up nights worrying about the damnest things. She counts the words she reads in any given book and writes the word count in the margins. She writes a new list if the slant of her handwriting wavers in the lines of the current list. but to her - she is a genetic anomaly and is completely normal. we dont get along either.

Mom's Mom:

My primary caretaker in childhood. BITCH ON WHEELS. prone to the rages you talked about. abusive, controlling and all around bad bad person. tried to kill me with a butcher knife when I was 16. In her dying stage from cancer, she was on anti depressants and for a moment we could see a glimpse of the soul of a person we had deemed souless my whole life.

Mom's Dad:

WWII vet, major bouts of depression from the war. fireworks were a no no. was in 1950's therapy for 7 years. wonderful man, never talked about what happened. He was a polish translator who worked in the clean up stage of the concentration camps after the war. 3 bronze stars and we still to this day don't know what for because he refused to talk about it.

Cousin (Mom's Side):

Severely autistic. severely.

Uncle #1(Mom's Brother)

rage rage rage. but he thinks he is normal.

Uncle #2 (Mom's Brother)

Anxiety

Thats all I know. But I cant think of anyone who is totally mentally healthy. Now that I think of it. hmmm.

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@ OW-I read somewhere I can't remember off the top of my head that farmworkers who apply pesticides (like, lots of different ones mixed together in the same sprayer-they do that to save time) seemed to have off-the-charts paranoia...but I don't think that would then be inheritable.

My mom has depression, she takes prozac and everybody's happier that way.tongue.gif

I think my dad has depression, and the kind of agitated rages I have. But I also think he has a personality disorder from his awful childhood.

Which is why he made my childhood awful too.

I think the combo of the abuse and the genetic predisposition is why my depression is so spectacularly worse than a lot of the family on my mother's side...who have the sort of reserve that would make them Not Mention It unless it got so bad they couldn't conceal it.

My father's side of the family? My grandfather was a spectacular ogre of a man who poisoned the lives of those near and dear to him.

He was an ex-marine who was justifiably proud of the fact that he was a member of the landing parties who had taken beaches in the WW2 pacific campaign, but there's no telling if that created his sadism, or merely added to it.

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Posted (edited)

Well were do I start? lol I AM MAKING IT SMALL BECAUSE THERE IS SO MUCH

Mom: BPD and Munchausens Biproxy Syndrome

Father: BP1, BPD and Alcoholism

Sister#1: BPD, Depression and Binge Eating Disorder

Brother #1: ADHD, bouts of depression

Brother #2: ADD and Binge Eating Disorder

Sister #2: ADHD

NOW FOR THE FUN PART...

Paternal Side: (Doing this by name,they are common names though)

UNCLES-

George: Alcoholism and substance abuse along with depression

Bob: Alcoholic and Rage

Rich: BP2

Steve: N/A

Tom: N/A

Marty: Alcoholic, BPD<More to him but I wont get into it

Joe: Alcoholic

AUNTS-

Mary: BP1

Patty: N/A

Debby: N/A *I have 11 aunts and uncles on my fathers side, these are just the folks I know

Grandma: BP

Grandpa: I will just say we are happy he is deceased he was a sick fuck

Maternal Side:

Aunt#1: N/A Uncle#1: Substance abuse, rage, Alcoholism, BP1 Uncle #2: N/A Uncle #3: Cyclothymia

Grandma: Depression Grandpa: Rage

My family is full of the crazies, I suppose because it is so large and there were people with MI who started this cesspool as I think of it. My father's side is full of sick sons a bitches. My grandfather did a lot of bad things to kids and so did uncle Marty, grandfather was killed, Marty was beaten badly enough to leave town and never come back. My father's side is full of the alcoholics, possibly because of what their father did to them? My mothers side is pretty tame in comparison, my mother is not good, she is borderline and has a tendency to make up illnesses and make her kids worse than they already are just for the attention. Now she has started making her self sick since we are all grown up. My father is a piece of work, he is manipulative, evil and not a good person to be around.

I haven't gotten to my cousins and such, the list is just too bug and I cant remember all the names, just faces at this point. Hell I am trying to do a family tree and I have only gotten as far as I have just shown you with a few more names and all my cousins that I know, so god only knows jut how bad it really is.

On the plus side when C and I get married we will make out on wedding gifts lol.

Edited by Sweetpeas

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@ OW-I read somewhere I can't remember off the top of my head that farmworkers who apply pesticides (like, lots of different ones mixed together in the same sprayer-they do that to save time) seemed to have off-the-charts paranoia...but I don't think that would then be inheritable.

Sure as shit hope my dad is right about the factory/chemicals thing. I have no knowledge of my family on my dads mother's side, so I don't know if her sisters/brothers/mother/father/aunt/uncles had any mental illness. The fact my grandmother had no family background is probably a bad sign. Probably suggests her family isn't very mentally healthy.

It's been said for decades that chemicals cause mental illness, "mad as a hatter" came from this (hat makers would go insane from the work). But, then again, there is no way to be sure. Out of so many factory workers, not many developed schizophrenia, or else we would know about it I think.

Either way, the inheritance rate for schizophrenia is EXTREMELY low when it is in a second degree relative. And, the genes for "schizophrenia" may manifest in a totally different way in a grandchild (could be as simple as anxiety, depression, cyclothymia, nothing at all, etc).

I used to be very very worried that one day I would go psycho. I don't worry about that any more. No point. I'm okay.

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Well were do I start?

Damn, I think you may win. ;) Bad contest to win.

Genetic insanity (BP, borderline) on one side, severe behavioral dysfunction (alcoholism/pedophilia/etc) on the other side. That's like PB&J sandwich of craziness.

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Well were do I start?

Damn, I think you may win. ;) Bad contest to win.

Genetic insanity (BP, borderline) on one side, severe behavioral dysfunction (alcoholism/pedophilia/etc) on the other side. That's like PB&J sandwich of craziness.

Tell me about it.....I only speak to like 3 aunts/uncles on my fathers side and my aunt on my moms side...I dont want to be exposed to them and I dont want my family to be exposed to them, ya know.

I am just happy my uncle and grandfather never got to me or my immediately family or the 4 cousins I am close with...honestly though I think he should be killed, I think all people like him should be killed, there is no rehabilitation of that and children/young girls are targets to him.

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@ OW-I read somewhere I can't remember off the top of my head that farmworkers who apply pesticides (like, lots of different ones mixed together in the same sprayer-they do that to save time) seemed to have off-the-charts paranoia...but I don't think that would then be inheritable.

So weird...someone JUST sent me an update to a study inspired by the one you are talking about, where those results prompted them to test for adhd in kids at large and compare probability of adhd with pesticides showing up in their systems.

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/05/17/pesticides.adhd/index.html

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My family is mostly in passive denial.

Maternal grandfather: Alcoholic

Maternal grandmother: Panic/anxiety, now Alzheimer's (the only one still living)

Maternal great grandmother: to quote my Mom, an "evil, crazy bitch", NOS

Paternal grandfather: Alcoholic, very introverted

Paternal grandmother: Bitch on wheels, NOS

Mom: DX'd GAD, possible depression (but I think it is the years of my stepfather chipping away at her)

Mom's side...

Uncle 1: Narcissistic. Was actually institutionalized for a bit. Now has Jesus.

Uncle 1's kids: One is narcissistic, one seems OK, one almost drank herself to death (she's 22, I think it was a cry for attention), and the other is wasting away from bulimia. Poor girl has been sent away all over the country for help. Art school seems to be helping.

Aunt: Is sweet as can be, then stabs you in the back. If I had to guess, I would say BPD, maybe.

Aunt's kids: Smart as all get out. Son was a juvenile delinquent, now has it together. Daughter is pretty OK.

Uncle 2 (my favorite family member): Definite social anxiety, we have talked about it. Alcoholic.

Uncle 2's kids: One is fine, younger has social anxiety.

Dad: Who knows, he passed away over 20 years ago. No one wants to give me a good answer, as the brain tumor "changed him" (and presumably everyone's perspective). Supposedly he was a very nice person, I only knew him when he was sick, and I was little.

Dad's side...(the Crispy Christians)

Uncle: Gay and well-adjusted.

Aunt 1: Just like my grandmother.

Aunt 1's kids: 2 from first marriage are fine. Older from second marriage is an addict showing no signs of recovery, younger is ADHD.

Aunt 2: Very mouselike.

Aunt 2's kids: They seem fine.

Added bonus: Stepfather is undiagnosed, but I would bet he would be DX'd OCD and maybe BP (not sure which axis), among other things. He is not well at all. His biological kids are OCD. His mother was institutionalized for many years, but I don't know what the DX was.

Guess who's been to therapy, out of all that, aside from the institutionalizations? Me, mom, the bulimic and the addict. The addict's close family has gone for the addict's treatment.

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Posted (edited)

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh yes...

Paternal Grandmother - PTSD, bipolar, numerous institutionalisations and suicide attempts

Paternal Granfather - alcoholic

Maternal Grandfather - PTSD, bipolar, alcoholic, suicide

Maternal Grandmother - possible borderline

Father - Bipolar, PTSD, possible schizoaffective, drug and alcohol abuse, many hospitalizations, suicide

Mother - sociopath/borderline

Sister - BPD

Cousin - Schizoaffective untreated

Numerous suicides through extended family, alcoholism rampant.

Now WHY do I not want kids again???

***editted to note both sides of my faimly came over to Canada after WWII - went through a lot over there trying to stay alive and in the dp camps etc - probable cause for the PTSD and addiction issues - most of my parents' generation and their parents drank a lot***

Edited by sabrina

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Father-bipolar

mother's brother-bipolar and addict

Paternal grandfather-possible bipolar

Paternal great grandmother-had something. Got ECT

great aunt-schizophrenia

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i don't know.

my dad has been on and off antidepressants a couple of times, for depression/suspected OCD. he also pops xanax like they're candy for his "anxiety issues".

i suspect that my paternal grandmother had some sort of mental illness in the form of MAYBE bipolar and an almost certainly an eating disorder, although that comes only from anecdotal evidence because she died when i was 12 and never learned to speak english.

my mom's side of the family is a mystery - i'm fairly positive there is none on her mother's side, but she has never met her father/knows nothing about him or his family, so who knows.

i almost wish i could clearly point out that mental illness DOES run in my family, because i think it would make it easier to accept my own diagnosis (instead of, how do i know this is real when it's supposed to be genetic and i don't even see it in my family at all??)

but i also feel that that line of thinking is pretty selfish, because i wouldn't want to wish this hell on anyone. so.

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My twin sister is bipolar and some kind of personality disorder (they're not sure)

My oldest younger bother is a pyromaniac and has ADD or somesuch

My middle younger brother is a pedophile and some kind of other MI - undiagnosed (we don't talk about him - he's dead to me)

My youngest younger brother is the normal one of the bunch - he has a different father, maybe that has something to do with it.

My mother has bipolar, i'm certain of it. She will, of course, deny there's anything wrong with her other than bearing the burden of five ungrateful children and two uncaring ex husbands.

My father has some kind of mental flavor too - he has to, how else can I explain why he's living in the hills of West Virginia cut off from the rest of the family because we all "want something from him"? Paranoid much?

I haven't been in contact with any of my grandparents, aunts, or uncles on either side to know one way or another except my father's brother - he has GAD and possibly bipolar.

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Yep! My dad struggled with alcoholism and depression before he died of liver failure when he was forty seven. My mum has manic depression (or so she says... she seems to) and alas, she's also a pathological liar so I don't know if she really does have manic depression. She is certainly mentally interesting in a lot of ways. If I had to peg her with anything it would be manic depression and sociopathy.

Both dad's parents were alcoholics and my sister suffers with depression.

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The concept of mental illness is a big no-no in my family and culture, so no-one [except for me] has gone for any treatment, let alone diagnosis. So officially, no-one aside from me has a DX, although I suspect there might be something not quite right in places.

I know there was a grandaunt on my maternal side who was a bit "strange" and committed suicide by jumping off a bridge. Aside from her, my maternal side seems fairly stable mentally, except for a maternal uncle who is an eccentric, if intellectually gifted, recluse.

My paternal side is a bit different. There is something not quite right with this side of the family. We'll start with my paternal grandfather. My paternal grandfather was an alcoholic who was abusive and tried to throw one of his baby grandsons out of an high-rise apartment window [he came close to being successful, so my parents never allowed him alone with me as a baby]...so something was wrong there.

There are claims my paternal grandmother is a pathological liar who often conjured stories. Always used to confuse me because I never knew when to believe her, or what to believe. What I do know is true is that she fled Hong Kong [joining the mass of refugees into the mainland] during the Japanese invasion in WWII, saw a lot of horrid things, almost got bayoneted by Japanese soldiers and according to some paternal relatives, that has messed her mind.

There is something odd about my father. Something a bit off-kilter with his interactions with the world and his behaviours, which has been remarked upon by other people [friends, maternal family members, etc.]. I hate to be diagnosing other people so I won't speculate on what he might be. He's very socially awkward and withdrawn [i.e. dislikes talking to people, dislikes crowds, etc,], has various intense obsessions [like growing abalone and commercial fish farming - he turned the backyard into a mini-operation at one point], he was physically abusive, has some strange ideas about "germs" and "cleanliness" and is highly dependent on my mum.

It's a similar story with my paternal uncle - there is something not quite right there either. He shares just about all the traits of my father except for the "germs" part.

I've got a paternal cousin who basically lives the life of a Hikikomori and rarely ventures out of his room.

Bottom line - who knows!

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From what my adoptive mom heard from my biological grandmother the biological family is as follows:

Paternal Great-Grandfather: BP1

Paternal Grandfather: BP1

Father: BP1

Mother: Schizophrenia, OCD

Aunt: OCD

Uncle: BP1

A few cousins: ADHD

I lived with them until I was like 4-5 months old... they were all so crazy that they fed me regular milk, not formula, and it was usually sour/bad... like most of the food they were eating in their house...

Then I went to Foster Mother.

She was like a MI magnet

FM: MDD, OCD, BPD...

ADOPTIVE FAMILY:

Maternal Grandmother: Depression

Mother: Un-dxed Borderline.

Brother: ADHD-severe

Other Brother: PDD-nos induced by hydrocephalus

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