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Bipolar BM is Spiraling... What Do I Do?

sunshinex's picture

For those who haven't heard my story, BM is not very involved... My husband has full custody and BM has visitation in the summer for a month or so. She doesn't see SD much because she's never cared to be overly involved. We now live in another province after buying a house and moving away (with her blessing). 

The past month or so, BM has gotten very.... lovey with me?? She messages me saying she's so happy I'm raising her daughter, she's so glad I'm in her life, etc. and I just kind of respond politely and tell her I'm glad she's in my life too. Whatever. We've always been civil, so it's not a big deal I guess. 

SD loves that we get along so I try my best. But she is bipolar, and over the past few days, I've noticed it seems like she's in a very strange, almost scary state of mind. Aside from telling me she really, really loves me (more than my husband does she said!), she's showing a lot of guilt over not being involved with her daughter.

She went from making comments about feeling bad for not being involved to talking about crazy conspiracies (she apparently doesn't post pictures of her daughter on FB because the FBI/CIA may "lock SD up" for lies???) and all sorts of strange things. I'm keeping the conversation going with her because I don't know what else to do. 

DH says she's always been bipolar but I've never seen her like this. EVER. I think something is very wrong. But I also don't want to break the trust we have between eachother and set things off for SD's sake. Like I said, she loves us getting along. I am thinking of reaching out to BM's mother and letting her know of the strange behaviour. 

Is that too far? Should I just drop it? I'm a bit freaked out and want to make sure she is ok and doesn't hurt herself or someone else. 


tog redux's picture

She sounds manic. Not sure what you can do - eventually she will get to the point of needing help. 

bananaseedo's picture

Could be a manic episode and sometimes that mixes with paranoia/delusions as well.  I don't think it's a bad idea to reach out to the mother.  That said, her mother more then likely already knows and has lived through hell with her daughter already.  Does she have a husband, boyfriend?  It'll probably get worse before it gets better, when they spiral, unless consistent with meds it's possible she'll end up in the mental health hospital for a stay until stable again.

Sorry you are dealing with this-an ex is tough period....add a mental illness like this, what a nightmare!


justmakingthebest's picture

I agree with the others. This sounds like a manic episode. I would reach out to her mother but ask that she keep it confidential, that you just want to make sure that someone that loves her is keeping an eye and ear out. 

advice.only2's picture

Always trust your gut, you don't want to reach a point where you thought you should say something and it turns out to be too late.

Contact the mom let her know, the mother may already be fully aware, or not, but at least you are kind enough to be doing something proactive.

Harry's picture

You can go from BFF to the worst person in the world in one second. You can not believe anything BM saids. She is not normal. You basically can not deal with bipolar people.  They change so fast and so far in there thinking 

SteppedOut's picture

My vote goes to contact her mother on the low down. Sounds like she is not taking her meds and manic.

Thumper's picture

Do you know IF she is consistent with therapy and taking meds?

IF your worried maybe a welfare check by Emergency Medical Team and police would better serve her.....

Remember sometimes 'things' are bigger than we are and this is one of those things. Unless your degreed in mental health, ok?


LuluOnce's picture

Whoa. This sounds exactly like what BM here does when she's cycling through a manic episode, but our BM has psychotic epsiodes as well, very commonly brought on by lack of sleep which occurs during the manic phase. 

I will tell you that I do not think we will ever reach out to GBM again about BM when she starts spiraling. We did last time (and the 6, 7, maybe 8 other times? I've lost count) and it has made our life and the SDs lives hell. No. From now on, it is BM's responsiblity to manage her mental illness. She knows she has it. It's diagnosed. It's not a surprise. She has meds. She needs to be responsible for herself. I sorely regret my DH telling GBM what was going on last year because GBM has done everything to enable BM and things get worse and worse for our daily life and in my opinion, even BM. GBM cannot believe BM has a mental illness and excuses it and ignores it at every turn and BM is doing even less to manage it now than she was in the year before this last episode.

Assuming BM knows she has a mental illness, and knows that she's supposed to do to treat it, I would absolutely 100% stay out of it. If GBM isn't already aware, or is aware and isn't taking action, there is a dang good reason and your intervention, no matter how thoughtful, will not change a thing and may even make things worse. 

I also wouldn't bother with a health and welfare check. BM had a ton of health and welfare checks last year, I think 15 or 16 total (not even calls from us but calls made by neighbors and her work) and every time the officer's' replies were "It's not illegal to be crazy. Nothing we can do."