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November 20, 2003



I don't have any personal experience with bipolar or with ADHD, but in my work I have studied both conditions and some of the medications that treat them. While I can't speak to the specific case you mentioned, I think that if you maintain a close relationship with your son as he gets into his adolescent years and continue re-evaluating his situation, you are likely to be able to see signs of depression or a "troubled" mind before he would try to take his own life. Obviously there are cases where people "don't see it coming," but it sounds to me like you have a solid relationship and would be likely to be able to detect problems before they reached such a serious level. Another suggestion to help ease your mind is simply to familiarize yourself with symptoms of depression, especially in children. They are not limited to crying and sadness, but indeed there are many other sometimes surprising symptoms including rapid weight loss or weight gain, insomnia or even sleeping more than usual, and many others.

It sounds like you are doing the right things--doing right by your son!!


Julie, that's such a powerful question you're asking. It seems to me that you're working hard as a family to help Colter feel good about who he is and how he shows up in and experiences the world. It's such a tricky thing being out there interacting and adding labels to the burden of being a child can only damage. i think that whenever we're medicating we need to be constantly re-evaluating because we just don't really know what the long-term effects will be for some of these meds and every brain is different. I would want to keep looking at it. Thanks for sharing this, we're having a lot of ADHD type issues with Tyler as well and haven't quite decided what to do about it. This gives me more food for thought. You know, cuz it's all about me.

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