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Ask the Mental Health Expert Archives 2001-2004

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Week of January 8, 2001

    Question: I work 1:1 with a child I suspect to have munchausens. She's 15, female, and obsessed with hospitals, mainly Psych wards. When escalated, she demands to be taken to the hospital, complains of sores or illness at least 5 times a week. She is doing much better now but I worry that she may revert back to these behaviors in the future. What would you recommend to prevent future problems and are there any specific treatments you'd recommend ongoing?    Dr. Pies' Answer

    Question: I'm dating a female bipolar patient, age 28 . She has a purchasing problem that seems related to her depression. When she gets depressed she spends money she does not have, which I fear may lead to bankruptcy. I've read that a lot of bipolar patients become bankrupt. My question: Is there a law that protects bipolar patients from purchases? Can she return items that vendors must accept back simply because she is bipolar? What else can be done?    Dr. Pies' Answer

    Question: I confronted my father nearly 6 months ago about molesting me and my brother. I'm nearly 30 now, but I felt I had to get it out in the open for my own sanity. Father insisted it wasn't true, but had a very guilty look on his face (even my brother noticed it). He wavers between having contact with my brother and I and avoiding us. My brother has also noticed that he has suddenly thrown himself into work and is smoking (cigarettes) like a chimney. My brother thinks in some way he is trying to send himself to an early grave because of his conscience...    Dr. Pies' Answer