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My mom is bipolar, and I’m scared I’m taking after her.

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Q: I just married my boyfriend of 3 years (off and on). Here lately
I’ve noticed that I have been very short with him about almost any conversation that we have. I tend to start fights, yell, cuss and be very mean for the stupidest things. He has lied to me about very important things from the past and I hate to dwell on them but it seems to hurt me when I think about them and I make him try and feel the way I do. I might add that I had a very violent mother, she abused me and my sibling. She is bipolar and a addict. At 14 I was taken from her by the state and since then have had issues with anger. I love my husband very much. I know I’m hurting him and I’m going crazy trying not to act like this. A divorce is not the answer. What do I need to do to stop my anger issues?

My mom is bipolar, and I’m scared I’m taking after her.

Answered by on -


You are still young and newly married. I would be careful about thinking about diagnosing yourself with something. It could be that you are reacting to the untruths that your husband has told you, it could be that you are still adjusting to the married life, it could be that you did inherit some of the traits of your mother and you need to address these before they get out of hand. If you and your husband are already having trouble, I highly recommend seeking marital therapy before things get worse. If you have not attended individual therapy for the issues of losing your mother and the anger you say it created, I also recommend that you take the time to address these issues or they will continue to plague your relationships. It sounds like you may have experienced a lot of pain and loss as a child/teen and it may be time to address these issues. Having a mother who suffered from BPD does increase your chances of developing a mood disorder but it doesn’t mean you WILL develop one. Address your childhood, learn to understand and manage your anger, address you marital issues and life may just improve dramatically. Good luck to you and your husband.

My mom is bipolar, and I’m scared I’m taking after her.

Holly Counts, Psy.D.

Dr. Holly Counts is a licensed Clinical Psychologist. She utilizes a mind, body and spirit approach to healing. Dr. Counts received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Wright State University and her Masters and Doctoral degrees in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Counts has worked in a variety of settings and has specialized in trauma and abuse, relationship issues, health psychology, women’s issues, adolescence, GLBT, life transitions and grief counseling. She has specialty training in guided imagery, EMDR, EFT, hypnosis and using intuition to heal. Her current passion involves integrating holistic and alternative approaches to health and healing with psychology.

APA Reference
Counts, H. (2018). My mom is bipolar, and I’m scared I’m taking after her.. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 20, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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