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Son with depression gone awol - Carers UK Forum

Son with depression gone awol

For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
I'm very worried about my son atm. He suffers from depression and anxiety, but his behaviour today is causing extra concern.
For the past week he has been up in the day, which is unusual for him, although his sleep pattern is erratic.
He went out to the shop earlier to get some ice cream etc, and I was busy all day helping his brother out, but he spoke to me and told me that he didn't sleep well last night due to some noisy neighbours keeping him awake. This seemed to be causing him a lot of anger - he told me he had "red mist" and wanted to smash their heads in with a hammer.
I gave him some advice, but as I was busy, I didn't really know what to say at the time - or at least, nothing I said seemed to relieve his frame of mind.
Anyway, at some point this afternoon, he went out on his bike again, which is fairly normal, as he's had his ESA, so he goes to buy food.
He has two friends, one he used to go and stay with sometimes, but that friend has recently moved to another town.
The other friend usually spends a lot of time here, although I haven't seen him today.
And my son hasn't come home yet, so I'm very worried.
I'm worried about the frame of mind he was in, especially that he had "red mist", which he hasn't really mentioned much before, and that he hasn't come home yet.
I've messaged him, tried to ring, but no answer. Normally he'll send a quick message to say where he is, or when he'll be home. His phone goes to voicemail.
He hasn't been suicidal for some time, but obviously, with depression, that's something to be aware of.
I rang The Samaritans, and made them give some advice, all they said was to ring the police. So I rang the police, and they said he's an adult so he can come and go as he wants. They said to ring back in a couple of hours if he still hasn't come home (they usually give 24 hours before someone to be reported as missing).

So what on earth do you do if you're worried about someone with depression, and you can't get hold of them?
Obviously, in my mind, I'm picturing the next episode of •insert soap here*, where he is found in a river.
Hi Helen
So sorry to hear of your distressing night, has your son returned home over night?
Perhaps if not you could reach out on local social media, FB etc to see if anyonew has spotted him in the area.
I can well ,well well understand your worry. Even with my own son, I was always so relieved when he just texted to say where he was. I used to tell him, Look, I just want a brief 'I'm still alive' text, that's all. I don't mind where you are, just that you're safe....

The trouble is, THEY know they are safe, so don't see it as a 'problem' for us.

I think to, that ANY 'out of character' behaviour is worrying, and a hundred times more when you know your child has 'issues' anyway.

I agree re the FB/social media, etc etc. Do you have contact details, at all, for the parents of his mates?? That might give you another line of checking. As parents, they should understand your concerns, and be sympathetic??

You mention another son - again,does he have 'lines of communication' with his brother that you don't? I find my son now, in his twenties, hears from his cousins about 'family news' so that if I tell him something he just says, 'yeah, I saw that on cousin's FB page'....it's like a bush telegraph we know nothing about!

One other thought - do you think he would agree to some form of 'tagging' - not obviously as a 'criminal' but simply those 'beepers' you can get that give you his GPS?? It could be seen as a little 'intrusive' but if you emphasise it's just because you WORRY about him, he might agree?? I assume they can be set up as some kind of phone app these days???

(As for the 'red mist' about the noisy neighbours - I'm afraid I can sympathise with that one alas. I, too, would merrily take a machine gun to people keeping me awake! I'm a lot 'calmer' about it now, in late middle age, but when I was young it was very, very intense - emotions ARE very intense when we are young, and in a way a parent has to take that on board, which can be hard.)

I appreciate what the police said, they have rules they have to stick with. But maybe if you can emphasise he is under CAMS or has an MH diagnosis or whatever, ie, to let them know you are not just being 'fuss pot mum' but that he HAS a degree of 'vulnerability' because of MH, that others dont' have, they might be more sympathetic. I think if you could just ask them to 'keep a look out' on their night patrols, and to 'be aware' of the situation if, say, they see anything 'untoward' going on anywhere.

I think that it is ALWAYS a good idea to at least 'alert' the police - even if they can't file him as a 'missing person' it WILL, I assume, be 'logged' in some way, which is a good starting point, surely.

All that said, I do hope he HAS now either come home or got in touch?

Our fears are ALWAYS so great at night - I can remember urging my son, when he was travelling back from London to a mate's house, to PLEASE text me when he'd got there, even if it was 2 in the morning (which it was, when the text arrived!). THEN I could relax.....
Helen - any news? I think previous contributors have made excellent suggestions so have no further comments other than calling local hospitals, hotels .... Sending you online hugs x
Apologies, I posted this, then went to get further help, then my brain just needed a break - I was actually falling asleep, then he came home around 2.00a.m!

He had been invited out to a quiet pub with a friend of his - she'd insisted - and his phone had died, they stayed out longer than intended.
He was fine!!
He'd had fun!
It's the most sociable he's been for a while - he said there was a 90 year old guy in there talking about bicycles in the 1940's!
oh, thank heavens- WHAT a relief!!

So pleased for you.

And even better, that he'd actually had fun - oh, that is good.

I do hope this 'upswing' continues.

but PLEASE get him to take on board that WE WORRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just a quick 'I'm FINE!' text is all we ask!!!!!!!

Hope you re enjoying a more relaxed weekend now.....phew phew phew!
ps- tell him if HIS phone is dead, USE A MATE'S!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)
So pleased! Great to have some good news. Hope he continues to have fun times,and realises he had you frantic and lets you know his whereabouts next time.