And now we're going to toss it over to Bipolar Expert Answers, Lisa Sundstedt. Lisa?
Hi and welcome to Bipolar Expert Answers.
I'm your Bipolar host Lisa Sundstedt. And today, we're answering questions from WebMD's Bipolar Support Group message board.
I am pleased to have Dr. Marianne Gillow, noted psychiatrist in the studio with me today. Welcome doctor.
Hi Lisa! Thanks for having me.
And I'm glad you're here, because we've really good question. This is from Ness 984.
My sister is acting strange. She is talking 100 miles a minute. She is coming up with unrealistic ideas for new jobs, trips to take, boats to buy.
Example, she told me she was going to run for governor of Illinois while she is still living in Indiana.
Her husband, my parents and I have tried an intervention. We've tried to talk to her, but she says that we're wrong and then projects what she is doing onto us.
She refuses to get help or listen to anyone. Any advice on how to talk to her would be greatly appreciated.
You know this is a good question, because how to deal with someone when they're in a manic episode it's always very tricky.
It's a good question and that it's also a very, very difficult situation. So my heart goes out to all of you that are coping with dealing with the manic loved one.
From what I'm hearing so far, it's pretty clear that your sister is in a manic episode. While a doctor can't diagnose a manic episode over the phone or over a website,
she demonstrates a lot of the signs that tell me that she's probably in a manic state. Unfortunately, when the level of the mania gets to be severe, people often lose their judgment completely.
They can get very grandiose, compulsive and even delusional to the point where they lose contact with reality.
So, I actually had two bits of advice that maybe helpful to you. Um, advice number one. It sounds like you two have been doing everything you can to educate yourself about this illness
The last manic episode I had I honestly went out and I bought a house, very impulsively. My realtor told me not to buy the house.
My mom told me not to buy the house. It's really hard to talk to someone when they're in that state.
Step two, however, if it looks like the educating and the gentle conversations with your sister aren't working, please, please consult your state's legal statutes.
Some states have the criteria that you have to be a danger to yourself or others.
Are you saying possibly have her hospitalized?
If somebody is being a danger then most certainly they're safest off in the hospital. That way they can get diagnosed and treated.
They can learn what's really going on with them and hopefully mobilize all the supports that they can. So number one, educate.
Number two, look into the legalities of the system. And again, my sympathies go out to you.
But I would however, encourage her to run for the governor of Illinois. That sounds like a good idea, so good luck with that.