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Is She Mentally Ill And Is There Anything I Can Do?

Question:

I think my mother is mentally ill. What i know is her father was physically abusive and her mother verbally, mentally and emotionally abusive. her parents aren’t abusive to her anymore and do have a relationship. i spent half my life growing up with my grandparents. It was the same abuse in my childhood, my stepdad physically abusive and my mom the rest. She constantly lies, manipulates, guilt trips, and is very insincere. She has tried to commit suicide a couple of times, nothing is ever her fault, she never admits anything is wrong with her and constantly is severing relationships with people. She lies to the point where your obviously are going to find out the truth and then pushes you out. She has to have control over everything in her life. Knowing every aspect of us kids life. She constantly told me i was going to be a failure, liar and even a serial killer as a kid. Thankfully i’m out of that house. She constantly throws fits, throwing objects at us kids when i lived ther. She turns family members, neighbors, friends against each other. She hides out in the house all day when she burns all her bridges. Always the victim of circumstance and always feeling sorry for herself. Can flip her personality in a second, hate you to love you to your face. Crying spells often, to make you feel sorry for her. Very Very insincere.There is always a problem and always drama. She can be happy too and nice. When she meets someone, she can be the sweetest nicest person. Then the games begin. she constantly borrows. She has stolen from me several times and has put my step dad in financial ruin. she is a very good manipulator. Her mother was the same way and her grandmother and now my sister and i’m worried about the younger kids. My brother and my step dad playing into the lies now.

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Answer:

The types of behavior that your mother displays into fit into what is commonly referred to as Borderline Personality Disorder. There is an old saying that people with Borderline Personalities are not born that way, they are made into being that way. Well, your mother seems to have suffered the effects of being abused when she was a child.

The fact that your mother has unstable relationships, lies and manipulates people, has attempted suicide a couple of times, has an explosive temper and blames everyone else for her problems all the types of things that cause me to think of the Borderline category. This set of behaviors includes being irresponsible with money and acting like the sweetest person in the world when she wants something.

However, what needs to be clarified for you is that your mother suffers other mental disorders as well. In fact, Borderline Personality Disorder is what is referred to as an Axis 11 disorder. I strongly suspect that there is an Axis one disorder along with her personality disorder. The question in my mind is whether or not your mother has some type of severe depression a Bipolar Disorder. Either one of these are mood disorders and would help explain her suicide attempts and, if she has a Bipolar disorder, would even explain what she does with money.

You want to know if there is anything you can do? Well, let us say there are things you can try to do and among them is to get her to see that she has problems and needs to get help. After all, she has a history of suicides and surely she has not forgotten about those. If you could enlist her husband and the other children into helping her see that she needs help it might just work.

In terms of help, my wish is that your mother sees a Psychiatrist first so that she can be evaluated for a mood disorder. If she has depression or bipolar disorder, medication will help a lot. Next, she needs to be in therapy because overcoming a personality disorder is not something that will be helped by medication. She really need, if I am correct in what I am saying here, is a psychologist whose expertise is in Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Thereby, she can learn how to calm herself, something she cannot do right now, and can learn new behaviors that will make her life a lot easier.

Best of Luck

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Comments
  • ann titus

    WE don't know what to do with my sister, the doctor has said she is manic depress i say she is bi-polar or worse! As long as i can remember my sister has had a out of control temper she screams puts holes in walls and was mentally abusive to her daughter. She lost her job due to illness. She believes her old job is in co hoots with the mob and she believes they are making commericals about her on tv and that the tv is sending her messages!!! She has now lost her home and she doesn't believe she is bi-polar. She also hears voices. How do i get help for she has no money and no insurance. Please help if you can thanks.

    ANNE

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