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Onset of symptoms and earliest indictors


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I cant remeber when My symptoms began nor did anyone pick up on any earliy indicators. My oldest daughter has recently been diagnoised on the autistic spectrum as PDD-NOS (something we were expecting) but I am wondering if she is also showing signs of early onset Bipolar. She has weeping spells sometimes lasting most of the day, she worries constantly but at other times is overly elated and laughing at her own jokes. SHe is only 4 but I kNOW some of this is just not "normal" but i cant seem to figuire out how much to attribute to autism and what to worry about. I have had bipolar tendencies as long as I can remeber so that is of no help. What about you all, what were your earliest indictors, what age did people start to notice you were different?

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I had severe seperation anxiety ever since I can remember. By the age of 7 I was a loner & didn't have

any desire to play with any other children. I don't know if this is attributed to BP but I knew of no other

kids like me. I started "acting out" when I was 13 and did some bizarre things in my teen years. I'd try

not to worry so much, but I know it's easier said than done. My youngest (almost 5) has adhd tendencies

and it's starting to look like a little more than that, causing my BP to flare up.

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I had severe seperation anxiety ever since I can remember. By the age of 7 I was a loner & didn't have

any desire to play with any other children. I don't know if this is attributed to BP but I knew of no other

kids like me. I started "acting out" when I was 13 and did some bizarre things in my teen years. I'd try

not to worry so much, but I know it's easier said than done. My youngest (almost 5) has adhd tendencies

and it's starting to look like a little more than that, causing my BP to flare up.

That's what made me think about this more. She gets in these meloncoly moods and I find myself sinking with her. Depression is not my normal state, i tend to live hypomanically and my serious problems began when I started getting depressed

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I've been overemotional since I was practically a toddler. I used to cry when I had to return library books or take apart favorite things I put together with tinker toys. :embarassed: I used to randomly bite other children. But I was never labeled, and that is very important to me.

But I still worry about parents looking too deeply into what they perceive as abnormal in their children. I am admitting my bias about this due to extraneous work-related factors. This is the most unscientific thing I think I've ever said, but, sometimes you can just look in their eyes and see.

I am obviously manic right now, so take everything I say as words of wisdom from your friendly garden gnome.

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I've been overemotional since I was practically a toddler. I used to cry when I had to return library books or take apart favorite things I put together with tinker toys. :embarassed: I used to randomly bite other children. But I was never labeled, and that is very important to me.

But I still worry about parents looking too deeply into what they perceive as abnormal in their children. I am admitting my bias about this due to extraneous work-related factors. This is the most unscientific thing I think I've ever said, but, sometimes you can just look in their eyes and see.

I am obviously manic right now, so take everything I say as words of wisdom from your friendly garden gnome.

I think i would be able to tell if it wasnt for the autistic aspects clouding the field. She has obvious OCD problems but that is so intertwined with autism that they can not tell me if its due to the autism or a problem that is seprate. It is making it hard to gague whether its a bipolar mania or a lack of social situational understanding (sigh)

I'm not looking to medicate (she doesnt at this point need it) but i am looking to provide the best and most suitable therapies possible. All of my family is upset about her being labeled but that is what it takes to get her help. I can not pay out of pocket for speech and occupational therapy, having her Autism diagnosis opens up a world. teh doctors told me point blank that she is high functioning enough that with teh right intervention will seem normal she will always have some struggles that other people dont deal with but she should function independantly in teh world just fine - teh best news teh parent of an autistic child can hope for. But i do worry about it being complicated by bipolar disorder

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Myself as well was labelled as "over-emotional" or rather "highly-sensitive".

I went into states of non-disosiation on and off (no communication with any other persons when I had to be in a group setting ie: school) and isolated myself totally when I could.

This was off set by periods when I was acting like the person I called "the ham" - the kid who perfomed soley for the approval and applause for adults..couldn't get enough attention (always good) from the adults around me. This was on again off again cycle started from the ages 7 until 12 or so. Until 7, I mostly spent in bouts of crying. This is where my over-sensitive label came from.

14 was my darkest year. I stopped talking. Teachers became very, very conserned. Overnight I went from a gregarious (ie hypomanic) young teen and dropped into a dark depression. Parents were called. Nothing was done. Resentment still exists until this day within me.

I have always been super sensitive to sudden noises. My startle reflex is off the charts. I hate to get my hands sticky/dirty. I never, even as a baby would let my feet touch grass. My parents thought this was funny and would love to sit me down in the grass and watch me sit there with my legs lifted so as not to let my feet rest in the grass.

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I've been overemotional since I was practically a toddler. I used to cry when I had to return library books or take apart favorite things I put together with tinker toys. :embarassed: I used to randomly bite other children. But I was never labeled, and that is very important to me.

But I still worry about parents looking too deeply into what they perceive as abnormal in their children. I am admitting my bias about this due to extraneous work-related factors. This is the most unscientific thing I think I've ever said, but, sometimes you can just look in their eyes and see.

I am obviously manic right now, so take everything I say as words of wisdom from your friendly garden gnome.

I think i would be able to tell if it wasnt for the autistic aspects clouding the field. She has obvious OCD problems but that is so intertwined with autism that they can not tell me if its due to the autism or a problem that is seprate. It is making it hard to gague whether its a bipolar mania or a lack of social situational understanding (sigh)

I'm not looking to medicate (she doesnt at this point need it) but i am looking to provide the best and most suitable therapies possible. All of my family is upset about her being labeled but that is what it takes to get her help. I can not pay out of pocket for speech and occupational therapy, having her Autism diagnosis opens up a world. teh doctors told me point blank that she is high functioning enough that with teh right intervention will seem normal she will always have some struggles that other people dont deal with but she should function independantly in teh world just fine - teh best news teh parent of an autistic child can hope for. But i do worry about it being complicated by bipolar disorder

Yaaawn. Hi Fidget. I think I'm properly medicated now to speak in coherent, unoffensive sentences.

I agree that you DO have to get the label to get the services these days. It sucks and its troubling, but there isn't enough $ (thanks DickBush) to go around to help everyone. Example: One of my Deaf/Hard of Hearing/Tourettes kids lost his Speech therapy and Physical therapy, because there were OTHER kids who needed it more. Yikes.

And tell me again what the best news the parents of an autistic child can hope for? What you think? I'm just interested.

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I was weird from the start.

Remember that my only official, bona fide, ICD-9-coded diagnosis right now is Bipolar (specifically Bipolar-II in the ICD-10 and DSM-IV-TR).

But, I've been told by tdoc and pdoc left and right that I've had all the signs of Asperger autism (or PDD-NOS, depending on whom you ask) and moderately severe ADD-inattentive. I didn't feel like getting treatment for either, so we never pursued it.

So the oddities, let me count thee...

* I wasn't able to walk across a room unsupported until I was 18 mos. old

* The first coherent sentences to come out of my mouth came out of something I was reading (around when I turned 3). Likely means I learned how to read before learning how to vocalize sentences.

* Dear GOD was I a clingy child... I'd be my own worst nightmare now if I were a parent. It didn't work well in the triangulation of my "mommy loves me, mommy started screaming at me so I am a bad child but I still need mommy" relationship. Fortunately by about the age of 12, I got out of that whole listening to Mom habit. ;-)

* Mood was labile pretty much since the day I was born. Smiling one moment and withdrawn and/or crying the next.

* Had no friends outside of the family/family friends until I was 8 (might have been also due to the fact I never attended a sizeable school until then, and the fact that my family was, to say the least, overprotective).

* Had these utterly bizarre fears and phobias (too many to list, but think a la OCD or paranoid psychosis).

* Never really athletic (though this one's a common concern to be seen in boys). I still can't do sports that require actual hand-eye coordination.

* Previously, I'd only thought I had been clinically depressed since I was 9... but then I thought back further, and realized that I was depressed (and moreover, sarcastic about it) since at least 7, which is when my mother pointed out to my doctor that my name meant 'Bliss' and I cracked up and said "good one, mom!"

* Oh yeah, archetypal little professor here. You can still see that in some of my posts.

* Again, clinical depression at 9 with first 'attempt' shortly thereafter.

* Continued 'cries for help' up until about 14, when I either grew out of it or realized that the cries would 'take me away from my goal' (which you can probably figure out what that is...)

Despite the fact that your daughter likely does have issues that will give her difficulty, though, I'm very happy for the two of you that you have recognized them, and that there is greater recognition for her condition by professionals. Those in my generation (I was born in 1983) never had parents and clinicians looking out for things like HFA/Asperger/PDD-NOS or severe childhood depression.

And I'm infinitely happy for you that you're not of the opinion of most parents with children that age, which is "LALALALALALA!!! IF I KEEP MY EARS SHUT NOTHING WILL HAPPEN!! I CAN'T HEAR YOU!! LALALALALALA!!!". I love my parents as they are the most well-intentioned souls I have ever met, but when it comes to in the end, when it comes to their own child, they're both about as intelligent and rational as a load of bricks falling out of a barrel.

Best of luck with your daughter. Keep tabs on her to watch for things that I and other people here have experienced, so you can do the best job possible. I'm happy you're keeping your head out of denial, which I have heard is a hard thing for a parent to do.

Edit, adding onto what JBella said:

With healthcare going the way it is right now (no matter which country you live in), it definitely will be difficult to get your tax dollars to work for your daughter. If nothing else, at least you know to accept certain traits in her that you may never be able to change. My mother always tells me she would have given the world to realize that it wasn't my fault I was a (in her former words!) "lazy, antisocial, slow, stupid, obsessive, clumsy, moody [etc.]" little sod.

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Hi all - just my twopence-worth. I was fine, a happy if sensitive child, until I was about twelve or thirteen. Cue vicious bouts of depression throughout teenage-hood, overdose aged nineteen, mania due to prozac aged twenty-three and finally a diagnosis of bipolar. xx

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my parents are/were (dad is dead) BP, so they knew i probably would be too. and sure enough, i am.

i was much, much more sensitive than the other kids. also much much more creative. i would go into these loner stages, and then hyperactive and make lots of friend and be the school show-off. then back in the corner. my grades were up and down from quarter to quarter. i was DXed when I was 7.

it continued into my teens, except the manias started getting higher and depressions lower, and the cycling happened faster. i couldn't make friends and was called "weird" all the time. I had to stand up for myself in a few physical fights that i recall.

i got drug treatment when i was 18 because before that, my parents wouldn't allow it.

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i too got "overly sensitive" and "hyper-emotional"......it makes me sad that my parents didn't recognize bipolar even though my mom admittedly knew something was wrong with me.... at 25 i know i'm young, but i'm happy that if this affects my kids, drs might at least recognize it as opposed to brushing it off. ug, i feel bad for the folks that took 40 years to get the right dx.....bp sucks.

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Heya Fidget,

I'm a bit wacked right now due to ... a lot of things.

But as a kid.

I never cared to play with the kids and I thought my mom was crazy when she had a fake tea-party with me and my stuffed animals.

By grade 6 I was (in retrospect) MDD for sure. Noone was looking for it though, and when they figured out I wasn't abused they just started bugging me about "not participating" in class.

I was high-achieving, anxious, and sad.

I never ever ever slept through the night until last summer when I started Lamictal (32 years).

By grade eleven I (again in the retrospectoscope) was cycling but not flagrant bipolar like now.

I've been taught in continuing education lectures that smart anxious kids who are grandiose might be bipolar and warrant child psych.

Then again they might just have their own special temperament and if they're PDD/ASD it's very hard to sort out.

I would look around for child psych, try social agencies but I don't know the system down there (might soon due to Bush-lite, though).

I wouldn't worry too much but I would get a consult, even with family med or general peds to start with. You're right that it helps to catch these things when kids are small.

I hope things go okay.

--ncc--

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As a child, I couldn't stand loud noises, they literally hurt me. I was afraid to talk on the phone. I was overly sensitive and easy to upset. I was afraid to talk to other children at school. As a teenager, I did some things that were rather bizarre, ie breaking up with my boyfriend every fall like clockwork. Then I left my husband for a man I had just met two weeks prior. I married this man but we had an open relationship, at least on my end. Then I met another man and got pregnant within six weeks of knowing him. I'm married to him now, actually.

I have a daughter with PDDnos (in the autistic spectrum). She's also mildly retarded and has psychotic disorder and a mood disorder. I think she is bipolar as well since she laughs inappropriately and then all of a sudden she is yelling at people.

So that's my story.

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I never cared to play with the kids and I thought my mom was crazy when she had a fake tea-party with me and my stuffed animals.

Wow, your mom at least recognised you were there. I was given stuff and left to get on with it. Toys were a substitute for affection and emotions in our house.

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And tell me again what the best news the parents of an autistic child can hope for? What you think? I'm just interested.

The best news that a parent of an asd can hear is that their child has the highest probability of function on this earth independantly (in reguards specifically to their diagnosis).

This means that in all probability she can make it through what ever schooling she decides to take on

This means that she can one day live on her own, pay her own bills, control her own life

This means that as I age I will not have to constantly worry who will take care of her when I am gone

This means the world to me

As a parent, any diagnosis that has the potential to make your child's life more difficult is devestating (even if only temporarily). Your heart aches for the future they will mostly face, you know it will no longer be easy because it is apparent that they are different. Not different in a way that they have decided to be, but different in a way they must be to cope. That kind of different is like standing in a room with roman candles shooting out of your head. I know what it is like to be that kind of different, like I said I have been bipolar as long as I can remember. I share many traits with my daughter, enough that some doctors have wondered if I might have been diagnosed as PDD-NOS had someone evaluated me at 4 or 5 or 6. I found a way to cope and function in this world. It was a hard rough ride, one I rather my daughter not transverse. I hate to say it but the punishing verbal abuse i suffered at home helped me to cope with the abuse i suffered at the hands of my peers. My daughter will never have that "benefit"

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