17-02-2019 08:26 AM
my son has recently been diagnosed with bipolar. We have not yet received any explanation about the condition or been guided to any support available. He has been started on medication.
Does anyone know of any support to help young people find accommodation or work and are they able to receive any financial assistance from Centrelink while they are looking. Any suggestions about useful resources or personal stories related to having a child with bipolar would be really appreciated.
17-02-2019 08:53 AM
There are a number of carer and patient support services available. What state are you in?
17-02-2019 01:37 PM
Carers Victoria list these agencies
I did a carer support class with Wellways, they offer free support services for patients too.
There is a general "carer gateway" website which has a search bar down the bottom. I have found this to be OK but gives a lot of services that may not apply.
17-02-2019 01:56 PM
Welcome to the forum 😀. The wonderful carers here have really helped me negotiate some tough times.
As well as the more serious threads, we have some social and self care threads. If you have any pets or hobbies I can tag you. Having a virtual cuppa in our "hot chocolate" thread with other understanding folk can be helpful at times.
If you want to let someone know you would like to touch base or ask questions just put an @ in front of their name. A drop down box gives you last 5 people who have participated in thread but you can type in another name.
18-02-2019 07:30 PM
Hi, I am sorry to hear about your son's diagnosis. He's only 18, it just doesn't seem fair that young people with all of their lives ahead of them are so afflicted.
I wish you and your son all the best for getting him on track to a positive future. My experience is having my son diagnosed with bi polar disorder when he was 22. It has been a difficult journey because it can be a very hard illness to treat successfully. My son's condition is compounded by a variety of psychological problems. So I hope your son responds well to the medication he's been prescribed. One of the things you will need to look out for as his parent/carer is whether, when he starts to feel better moods, he might take himself off his medication and not tell you about doing so.
In the early stages and even after that, it is very typical that people with bi polar, particularly young people, go into a denial stage and think that they can get on fine without their meds. They don't want to think of themselves as "this sick person who has to take medicine for the rest of my life - that sucks, that's not me." So, a question I would suggest you asking him regularly is: "Are you taking your medicine as the doctor has prescribed?" (using your own form of words, of course).
As regards accommodation, I can not be much direct help except to say that if he goes into share accommodation or some other arrangement outside your home, I suggest that you visit and phone him on a regular basis. Sometimes, when they are quiet and you don't hear from them for a few days, things are starting to unravel and they may be in an elevated mood and having a great time but not eating or sleeping. The danger is that he can slip into a psychotic episode and need to be hospitalised.
With regard to employment, there are disability support employment services, some that focus on people with mental health conditions. I cannot recommend a firm to you because I am located in Queensland. I hope you find one that is excellent and genuinely caring and prepared to go the extra mile. They are around and you can find them. We had a couple of very good ones over the years, but the downside is that they tend to be promoted to managers and you lose them as consultants.
You really should already have been given a lot of information by your medical practitioners - GP and psychiatrist - about the condition of bi polar disorder. There are pamphlets and booklets available from SANE and other non-profit organisations working in the field of mental health so good to download them and/or to request hard copies to be mailed to you.
I hope this information helps you and you son. best wishes
27-02-2019 08:21 AM
Thank you so very much for taking the time to reply. It is such a difficult journey. We have only been in Victoria for a little while and before that we’re in Brisbane. My son is wanting to go back as that is where he has lots of good friends. Could you please share any employment services/youth workers/housing support, psychologists or anything that you’ve come across in Brisbane that you’ve found helpful 🙏
27-02-2019 09:38 AM
So great to have you join the forums and find support here! I just wanted to let you know that as part of our guidelines here, the forums are completely anonymous and specific locations and health professionals can't be shared. As the forum is viewable publically it's just important for safety and privacy.
Members can however, share thier experience and tips on finding supports or mention broader services and helplines that might be useful such as the one's @Darcy shared!
If you need urgent assistance, see Need help now
For mental health information, guidance and referrals, see the SANE Help Centre
SANE Forums is published by SANE Australia with funding from the Australian Government Department of Health
SANE Australia ABN 92006533606
PO Box 226 South Melbourne 3205 Australia