How to help my son

For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
My son is 20. He started uni last year but was already showing signs of anxiety before he went. After his first month there he suddenly developed what the Gp thinks is IBS and it took over his life. He started having panic attacks and couldn't get to lectures. He avoided social situations. He started limiting his food intake and lost a lot of weight. I encouraged him to come home as often as possible but he does not get on with his step dad and doesn't want to be here. He did not submit any of his final first year work so will have to drop out. He has a flat for another 4 weeks but then has to leave.he plays in a band and music has been his life but now he's saying he wants to give it up. His friends don't understand and he gets frustrated and angry with everyone which makes it worse. I've told him he can come home but I know he doesn't want to. He says this isn't his home anymore. He does talk to me sometimes but less and less. He is wound up all the time.He refuses point blank to seek help. He saw a Gp after the first incident of ibs but has refused to go since. He will not accept counselling or medication. He has talked about suicide. He now has panic attacks about any situation where he feels he might not be able to access a loo. I have spoken to my Gp who is very supportive but because he has mental capacity there is little she can do. I know things will come to a head when he has to leave his flat. He will have no income - he used to work with disabled kids but gave it up (he was great at it too ) . I can't see him getting himself signed on for benefits. I'm worried he will become homeless or harm himself. I have decided all I can do is continue to love him , to offer him a roof over his head and to support him in whichever way he will accept it. I'm not sure what else to do but I hate seeing him like this as he is going downhill fast. Any advice ?
I would ask him if he will let you come to see the Welfare dept at the university as a starting point
Oh Liz, this is pressing so many buttons about what happened with my son, except he kept his anxiety hidden and we didn't know for a long time, neither is there a step dad, but it was till very evry worrying.
Eventually he said he would go to the doctor so I kind of forced his hand by phoning and making the appointment. He said he would go, but I thought he wouldn't so I didn't go to work that day and bright and breezily ( Oscar winning performance), said I'd walk round with him and offered to go in with him if he wanted. He was shaking but was quite grateful someone had taken the steps for him. He did let me into the consultation and did get prescribed antidepressants but didn't take them regularly as he thought he didn't need them.
After a while he got really low again a nd one day hit rock bottom. After tears and distress we managed to get him to agree to get help and we arranged counselling privately. To make sure he attended I had to drive him there (we live rurally and he couldnt drive). It did help
Roll forward a couple of years and he's now having counselling with someone different which seems to have better effect, we are still paying . But we have built his self esteem with lots of praise, patience and some gentle dropping in situations he would have refused if he could.

It's been basic support gently pushing him forward and building him up but we still live on eggshells waiting for something else to put him back again as his self esteem and anxiety is so deep rooted. We have no idea why.

With your boy, can I suggest you help him find somewhere to live? If he's in a deep deep slough of depression he won't be able to do anything for himself, he's already not feeding himself so he will need someone to do the basics until he starts to feel a bit better.
He also needs someone professional to talk too,a counsellor. He can self refer on NHS but we found it useless as if boy didn't say anything they marked it a refusal not realising he was so very down and embarrassed.

Once your boy is starting to feel a bit better it will get easier but its a long hard slog. We are 3 years in now and still not quite there. He wants a job but comes across so nervous at interview no one will have him :( :(

Sorry I have to s top now, it's too difficult. :cry: You could read some of my earlier posts. Try to keep him away from alcohol or drugs, they will only make situation worse. Find somewhere for him to stay where he feels safe, a relative or friend perhaps,
He coild try the young minds and the mix websites
https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/
http://www.themix.org.uk