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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Bodies » Mixing mental disorders

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Author Topic: Mixing mental disorders
Member # 5972

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I have a quick question, and maybe there is no answer, but if a person with anxiety and ocd, and a person with bipolar disorder were to have a baby, what are the chances that the baby will be messed up too? And if we're both messed up, but we can live with our issues, presumably, if the baby had problems, it would be workable, right? We're not planning on getting pregnant any time soon, but definitely sometime in the future [Big Grin]

I'm just curious as to what the risks for us are.

Thank you!

Posts: 28 | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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There is strong evidence to SUGGEST that disorders like OCD and severe anxiety are genetically linked, but there has not been a gene identified for those disorders. There is also a large argument that environmental stresses can cause anxiety and OCD. The same goes with bipolar disorder. Generally, those who are bipolar largely have a family history of it. BUT, that doesn't mean that a person with a family history will have bipolar disorder.

So, it's a lot more complicated than just "I have X, he has Y, what will our children be like?"

You could presumably have a child that is perfectly healthy without any of the above disorders. It may not be a bad idea to consult a geneticist before trying to get pregnant, just to fine out more information.

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Posts: 3987 | From: Greater Burlington Area, Vermont | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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We never really know what our kids are going to look like...even genetics are not always exact and, as Abbie said, there are a lot of ideas about genetic links to various mental illnesses but no real definitive answers.

The bigger concern which could be a part of it would be to find out from your doctor if any medications you may be taking--if you are taking any--are ones that you can continue during pregnancy, or should be taking if you are trying to get pregnant (whenever). That might be an important conversation to have if medications are a part of your management, such that you can know what to expect.

There's a lot that can be done for anxiety and OCD, and also bipolar that involve more talk therapy and behavioral stuff to help you manage the symptoms. So even if your medications cannot be continued during pregnancy, there are other options.

I think the best we can do for our future kids is to be aware of our issues and willing to be able to put in the work to create as much stability as possible. Nobody is perfect, and certainly having a diagnosis does not make you inherently less fit, or say that you should not have children. There is a lot to be said for environment and having supports for yourself in place!

But if you are considering pregnancy I'd definitely mention it to your doctor so that if medications are involved you can know which are safe and which might be contraindicated.

Posts: 384 | From: Philadelphia, PA | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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"even genetics are not always exact."
The vast majority of Humanity's DNA is about 99% the same in everyone, but we're still totally different from eachother, both physically and psychologically. It's because every cell processes the data differently.

Like, if you provided different workers the same buildings, they ain't gonna build the same houses with them, are they?

But, it's still better to see with your physician, though.

I know there is an over the rainbow for me.

Posts: 84 | From: Algeria | Registered: Nov 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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