Not on the level of schizophrenia or DID by any means. He’s not hearing voices and it’s still him when these things happen but it’s not really “him.” It’s almost like there are 2 versions of my son. That may be the whole point of this blog today but the title… well that’s what I like to call what pretty much any parent of a bipolar child suffers from.. (insert other disorder here for bipolar if your child suffers from something similar). They go from 0-60 in 2.3 seconds and right back again.. However, as a parent.. We don’t.. Well at least I don’t.. He’s ready to move on, he’s moved past it.. I’m not. Why is that? Why does it take us longer to get over this than they do? Why can’t we turn it on and off like they can? I am exhausted, drained and physically, emotionally and mentally wiped out after an episode with him. And I need more than 5 seconds to cool down. I need time to get myself back together, get things back in order, make sense of things and time to breathe again. Not only that but the whole being a parent of a bipolar child while they are in a rage is no picnic either. You have to remain calm, try to get them to calm down. You have to make sure that they are safe, that you are safe. You try and protect things that could get broken. Not an easy situation to stay calm in! You have to reassure them that they are loved and wanted and that what they are doing is wrong but that doesn’t make them a bad person. As a parent we see a child with bad behaviors, but they see a horrible person who no one loves or wants. It tests your faith and your strength. It wares you down. It breaks your heart. But you have to be the strong one, you have to still be the one in control. You cannot give that control to your child. And yes, they still have to deal with the consequences. You just have to know the right time to present them to a bipolar child or no matter what you did to diffuse the situation previously, you just lit the bomb again! I love my child, no matter what his diagnosis is, no matter the behaviors he exhibits. He doesn’t always make the best choices in how to handle his anger or what is really necessary or appropriate to be angry over. When he is happy and calm he knows a million and one ways to successfully handle stress, anxiety or anger but when the Hulk decides to come out for a visit, apparently he doesn’t know the best way to handle things. If I can get past the Hulk and get to Jake, I can get him to overcome the Hulk and come back.. He doesn’t always realize it but he’s really the stronger of the 2 (not physically, but definitely emotionally and mentally). I am hoping that over the years and as he gets older, he will be able to do this on his own without my help but right now, I will do whatever I can to help him get through these.I will continue to find ways for him to be successful and happy. I will count my blessings on our good days and look to my friends and family for support on our bad ones. I will still high him tight and tell him I love him every night when I tuck him in bed, no matter if it’s after a good day or a bad one. I will still take my time to decompress after an episode and hopefully find a way to deal with my “parentofabipolarchilditis” as he will continue to learn how to deal with his bipolar. We are a team and we will help each other. We will stand tall, we will move forward and we will learn from our mistakes and use them to both become better people. You cannot go through this alone and I hope that anyone who is in my situation does not have to or feel like they are. Rely on other people, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You may not want people to know what is going on but trust me, it’s really best if they do. Not everyone but at least people you know you can count on and trust when it comes down to it. People who judge or don’t understand the disorder, are not the ones you want to lean on in times like this. But not everyone is like that. Don’t be afraid to open up and ask for help. Your child may be the one with bipolar disorder but you also need strength and support! You need this so you can be the best parent your child needs.