Monday, November 12, 2012

The Trade-Off

Well, DH had a pdoc appointment and reported to the pdoc that he was getting more paranoid.  He was believing that everyone, friends, family, and just strangers in town, were judging him because he was not working.  He wasn't leaving home for any reason.  At my nephew's 6th birthday party, DH didn't speak to any adult at all, except a few words to me.  The pdoc put DH back on Seroquel.  I actually think that DH should have been on Seroquel all this time, but back when I took over setting up DH's meds, he was not taking it and hasn't been back on it since.

The pdoc said that the Seroquel would decrease the paranoia.  And it did.  And it did very good things for DH.  Instead of watching TV all day, he was suddenly cleaning, rearranging....even doing some small repairs.  It was very good. 

Then DH's pdoc called and stated that DH's Lithium level (in his bloodwork) was way too low.  He instructed DH to raise his Lithium back up to 1500mg a day--600 in the morning and 900 at night.  Immediately I saw a difference with this change, too, but I'm not sure it was a good one.  DH is a little less motivated than he was when he first started the Seroquel, but the main change that I'm noticing is that he is starting to get whiney, like he was several months ago.  He wants this, he wants that, wah wah.  And he's not satisfied with things like he was before.  I had warned him that November was going to be an exceptionally tight month financially, and still, he keeps asking me to buy things like chocolate milk, or expensive (by my budget standards, LOL) cheeses.  When I tell him there is no money for that, he gets sulky and pouty.  And keeps asking.

I'm wondering if maybe the Lithium isn't the miracle drug that it was earlier.  Then I'm wondering if maybe I'm just seeing these things more because he is not laying in bed watching TV all the time, so he has more interaction with me, thus, the opportunity to beg for more stuff.  I don't know!!!  But I would like to go to the next pdoc appointment (in 4 weeks) if I can.


Miz Kizzle said...

I wonder if fear of being judged is a common element among people with bipolar depression?
My BIL who is bipolar is obsessed with status. He boasts about living in a posh town to everyone he meets, having paid way too much for a tiny fixer-upper in order to live in that town. For the same money he could have purchased a much nicer house in a nearly town but it wouldn't have the same cachet as living in Fancypantsville.
He also stretches the truth about his personal life, bragging that he graduated from a prestigious university when he really bounced around from college to college until he eventually graduated from a less well-known branch of the ivy league school that basically has much lower admission standards. It's not a lie, exactly, but it's not the truth either.
He also brags about his job, claiming to be a "banker" when he works in tech support for a bank. Again, not lying exactly, but definitely reshaping reality.
The bottom line is that his life revolves around appearences and how the world in general perceives him. He sounds a lot like your DH in this respect.

CatLover said...

In US culture, to be an able bodied adult and not have a job is a shameful thing. Most people who have serious disabilities struggle with that issue. Your DH is no different than anyone else in that respect, and with the recent election and so much talk of "takers" no wonder he was paranoid. That's not necessarily a sign of mental illness, but a result of being unable to work in American culture and feeling extraordinary guilt about it. I go thru the same thing, and I do have bipolar disorder. My former spouse who did not have mental illness but was seriously disabled by birth defects went through the same thing.

Juju Loan said...

My son takes seroquel. So far it has been very good for him, but he is nowhere near what is typically considered a therapeutic dose range and I'm not sure if we will ever get there.

perphila said...

Sounds familiar. My husband was that way too. I think he always had that component inside that worried way too much what others thought of him even though he claimed he didn't that when the bipolar kicked in just fed what was already there. It then became paranoia. He also had a point where he never wanted to leave the house unless he was with me. The doctors had thought he was agoraphobic. Then he started thinking how the kids and I were also judging him and how he couldn't live up to those "expectations" which fed the depression. The seroquel did help but he wasn't taking it in conjunction with the lithium he was supposed to be taking. I really believe the meds helped him just enough to drag him up from wanting to die but not enough to be stable because he wasn't taking them properly. The lithium might seem to be having some side affects but I think it's better than letting one drug alone rule. Sean as you know is now unmedicated and even though at the moment there doesn't seem to be any paranoia he still has the "I am better than you" thing going on. He is an ed tech but he thinks he is really a "teacher". He is living on disability but tells everyone he is receiving "retirement". Lot's of things with the grain of truth but that went through the spin doctor cycle in his brain. It is only one step away from crazyville. I don't say that meanly either. It is what it is. At least DH is up and moving and doing. Pros and cons right? If the pro is him being active and the con for that is whining well...what can you do? Everything is a work in progress it seems. I wish you loads of patience...:)