wondering what to do

Hi, I'm new to this website and very glad you exist. My sister developed postpartum mania 10 years ago and has had her own version of bipolar disorder ever since. I love her and my now 10 year old nephew to bits. Right now she is staying with my 83 year old very amazing and gorgeous mother, whom I also love to bits, because my sisters partner is understandably completely over dealing with my sisters mood swings and holding the whole family together. I'm having my first in 10 years experience of being angry with sister because of the toll on my mother, her partner and my nephew. I think it is inevitable and probably necessary that my sister split with her partner. Any clues as to the way forward peeps? Any stories from similar experiences of professional advice much appreciated. thanks. Tidder

2 Replies

  • Hello Tiddler!

    I am not a clinician so can not give professional advice but I had postpartum psychosis and ultimately went on to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder, postpartum onset. Recovery is a process and it took education, trial and error and perseverance to get to a place of balance and recovery. If it wasn't for the support of my family and friends, I may never have gotten there. As difficult and as frustrating as it must be as a family member, I am sure you are a tremendous support for your sister. I know, in my case, finding the right combination of treatment (correct meds., professional therapy, emotional & spiritual support) have been essential in my recovery and maintaining my well-being. Not sure what your sister's situation is but with the right treatment plan, recovery and balance can be achieved. There is an organization in the USA (NAMI) that offers information and support for family members. Here is the website: nami.org You may find it to be a useful resource.

    I am sure your sister appreciates you, even it is difficult to see it so hang in there.

    Warm Regards,


  • Hi Tidder

    As Jennifer says, I'm sure your sister values your love and support more than you might think. I'm glad though that you are able to say and realise that you do feel angry. Mental illness really does take its toll on everyone around the sufferer too.

    I wondered if your sister has been able to access any peer support from an organisation like bipolar uk? It might help to spread some of the burden you feel as a family and give her others to talk to who know the pain she will be feeling about her relationship breaking down. I also wondered about HomeStart who can provide volunteer befrienders for families affected by mental health problems.

    For yourself personally you might value some time with a counsellor or trusted friend to talk through the impact of the last 10 years. It sounds as though you are doing an amazing job of loving and supporting everyone. It's ok to take a break and to need people to talk to.

    Warmest wishes

    Naomi x

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