Bipolar Disabled Single Mom Desperate For Temporary Financial Help
by Emily Turner
(Florence, AL, USA)
I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2004, but the signs and symptoms of the illness had already made an undeniable mark on my life and story by then.
At that time, I was married to a controlling and verbally abusive husband, and had been teaching school for seven years.
I started out doing a wonderful job, but it seemed that each year, I had less energy to do the job well. I was missing work more and more, and I was tired and depressed much of the time.
My son was born in 2001, and he is an extremely demanding child. He is not unruly or mean, just full of life and constantly moving, questioning, and interacting with those around him.
He was diagnosed with a severe case of ADHD at a time when I was hesitant to "buy in" to such a diagnosis.
Yet, the medications he takes each day do help him feel more normal and perform tasks in a more focused way at school.
A combination of things led us to where we are today.
After resigning from my teaching job to care for my child, the mania and depression were extremely fierce. I had no support at home.
My husband didn't understand why I couldn't just handle it. He was very hard on John Thomas, my son, and on me.
I left with my son and little else in December 2008. At first, it was the happiest I could remember being.
But after being labeled as being "bipolar" I was passed over teaching jobs again and again.
There was no question about what a good teacher I was.... the questions were always about the illness and that the staff didn't understand, etc...
I was forced to take jobs delivering pizzas or waiting tables, which neither paid the bills or kept me healthy.
I started off strong at these jobs and then I would just crash from emotional and physical exhaustion.
Currently, I am in the final stages of a promising appeal for disability, which would give me a chance to raise my son. I have no other hope. I am out of money until then.
I don't know how I will pay my basic bills, and I am terrified. My son and I are very close, and I don't want to see him hurt by my illness.
I am torn between giving up custody to his father, who is mean and sarcastic, and keeping him with me, a home full of stress because of bills right now.
I desperately need help making it another 1-2 months. ANY HELP at ALL would be a blessing. Please help me find a way out of this box I feel so scared and trapped in.