My family tree is beautiful, strong and large with many bipolar roots stemming and growing beneath my family tree on both sides, forming my bipolar tree of life.
My father’s side of our family tree of life…
- First of all, I know my father has bipolar disorder and anxiety but refuses to accept it. He has been given medication but will not take it. He was verbally and physically abusive to me when I was young. I just wish he would have accepted it, gotten some help, would take his prescribed medications regularly or do whatever he needs to so that he could know and feel some true happiness and peace in his life.
- My father’s mother, my grandmother, had some form of undiagnosed mental illness. She had many obvious signs and symptoms.
- My father’s grandfather, my great-grandfather, killed himself by jumping out of a window from a tall building. He did this while my father, as a young child, was supposed to be watching him and taking care of him. I suspect that experience affected and impacted my father in a very painful and negative way throughout his childhood and life.
- My cousin on my father’s side of the family was an alcoholic and shot himself in the head while he was on the phone with his brother.
My mother’s side of our family tree of life…
- My mother seems to be great and is a very strong woman.
- My mother’s sister, my aunt, has bipolar 1 disorder with psychotic features. Her psychotic features were quite severe as she would hallucinate often, seeing spiders and people who were not there. My aunt thought these people she saw were ghosts and liked seeing them, talking to them and welcomed them as her friends. I suppose that made the experience less frightening and easier to cope with. She later told me that when she came to visit us at our house when I was younger she would sometimes stay up all night, because she had thoughts and visions of killing us. So she stayed awake all night so she would not kill us. Wow! Whew! That is scary to me. She is much older now and is doing quite well with less hallucinations and her bipolar seems to be in better control.
- My mother’s sister, my aunt’s daughter, my cousin, has some form of mental illness as she has paranoia often that people are following and bugging her house and are just out to get her. Things like that, but I am not sure of everything.
- On my mother’s side I recently found out that I had a great, great Aunt they called “Crazy Aunt Lilly” as sad as that is. This was story and my Aunt Lilly was kept a secret for a very long time, so that is why I just found out about it recently. Of course, it was many years ago and was back in the days when they put “Crazy Aunt Lilly” in an “Insane Asylum” as they used to call it and threw away the key. They never saw my poor beautiful Aunt Lilly again. I love you Aunt Lilly even though I never knew you. I feel your sadness and your pain. I pray you have peace, love and happiness now.
The exact cause of bipolar disorder is yet to be discovered, but there are many contributing factors in the development of the illness.
Genetics, environment and lifestyles play a large role in the development of bipolar disorder and the severity of bipolar. Emotional, physical and sexual abuse, substance abuse and addiction and other stressful life events can play a factor in the development of bipolar disorder, as well.
About half the people with bipolar disorder have a family member with a mood disorder.
If one parent has bipolar disorder, there is a 10 to 15 percent greater chance of their child developing this condition. The risk in a child jumps to a 30 to 40 percent chance if both parents have bipolar disorder.
I pray none of my three beautiful and precious children will ever get bipolar disorder. I do not want them to have to suffer and have the many struggles related to bipolar. It is a fear I do worry about. I continue to pray that I will not pass my bipolar genes onto them.
I have bipolar disorder and mental illness on both sides of my genetic family tree and there could be even more bipolar roots that formed my family tree of life that I do not even know about.
However, there seem to be plenty of many fascinating, fabulous and beautiful genetic bipolar roots growing beneath my family tree helping to form me into the person I am.
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