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Pushing a huge rock - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Pushing a huge rock

For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
My rock is 23 and you're right it is easier for him here also he has aspergers and I think he is quite frightened at such a massive change . His care co ordinator is bringing a lady next week who has a vacancy for him but I don't think he will be sold on the idea. He doesn't know yet and I'm dreading telling him I'm going to try to point out it's a positive thing but I think he will be very frightened
This is only a thought....

Many youngster find 'flying the nest' really scary. I can remember when I first went to uni (about a three hour train journey from home), there were quite a few female students weeping as they waved their parents goodbye (and I know their mums were weeping, as I wept buckets when I waved off my own son in turn decades later)

(I found it 'odd' because I'd been to boarding school...it had hardened me no end!!!!)(Uni was a piece of cake - I had the freedom to run home WHENEVER I WANTED - unlike boarding school where we were locked in like a prison!!!!!)

However, what I was thinking was this - would it be helpful if you suggested to your son that he sort of 'weekly boarded' in his independent accommodation, but could come home to you for weekends??? That way he might not be so (very understandably!) scared and possibly reluctant.

They DO like coming home for 'home comforts' - and I know, a 'reminder' of being a 'kid' again and so on. My own 23 y/o still likes to spend some weekends 'at home', even though he now relishes independent living. And, quite frankly, I'm going to 'grab' him for weekends at home for as long as I can .....BUT, also knowing he's capable of living outside the nest as well.

It's hard to cut the umbilical cord at any time and in any circumstances, but especially when independent living is more of a challenge anyway. Maybe it can help to see the cord as a bit 'stretchy', so that it doesn't have to be cut 'decisively' straight away????

All the very best possible -
Good idea Jenny. When M first became a boarder at school, and again at college, and again when he first went into residential care, the staff said it wasn't a good idea for him to come home initially, until he'd settled in. However, as he'd been a caravanner since he was 6 weeks old, and knew my rule, he could go to a steam rally at the weekend, but however tired he was, he MUST go to school on Monday morning, he was really used to having two entirely different lifestyles, home, or rallying. The staff were amazed at how he could drop straight into his "other" life.
I'm sure that he found it much more bearable, especially when forced to share a room, which he'd never done before, because I could say "it's only for four nights, then you'll be back with us". I also made sure that wherever he went, it was as nice as I could make it, just like home. His own TV, radio, quilt cover and quilt and pillow and sometimes, his own bedside lamp and bedside table or chest of drawers. He would ring us at home (still does, you can almost set the clock by his 8pm call) so he can tell me what he's done, and vice versa.
This has made him realise that I have quite a boring life, and see very few people, whereas he's been to day service, shopping, had different staff etc. I always stress that he's had a much more interesting day than I have, and I'm sure this helps him see some advantages of living away from home.
Debra, I hope some of this helps you and your son. Maybe point out that everyone there was new once upon a time, but they will do all sorts of things that you can't do with him.
I do find the idea that a 'sudden death' method of 'acclimatising' someone to a new home is a good idea, very odd indeed! It's as if the theory goes - we have to have your mum/son/whoever for a sufficiently long time to 'brainwash' them.....

I have to say I completely disagree! I think it's the 'I'm never going to be allowed home for ages!' is what is scary and frightening. I think knowing that I'd only be there 'for a few days' or whatever, and knowing I could 'come home for a while', makes it infinitely easier!

OK, I can understand the 'immersion' method might work, or, indeed, actually be necessary, for someone with severe dementia who would just get confused as to where they were, but if that isn't in the mix, then why on earth not make it easier to 'wean off' home and 'wean in' to independent living in a gradual way.

Parents usually find their children can start off by coming home lots and lots, but then, gradually, as they both get used to living away, AND find that living away is more 'fun' simultaneosly with, as BB points out, realising how boring their home life is (!) in comparison, that the whole process is far less traumatic.

The whole 'decorating their room' is definitely a key ingredient. I can remember it from my own days, and certainly my son's - the posters, the 'stuff', the computer, the photos, etc etc. All such fun!

By the way, useful tip for ALL empty-nester mums - do NOT even THINK of 'reclaiming' their bedroom! NO NO NO. They want it left EXACTLY the way it was because look, it's THEIR bedroom, OK??? So, just don't touch anything! (I can still get a bit miffed and upset that my own childhood bedroom, now in my brother's holiday let, is the storeroom! I WANT MY BEDROOM BACK!!!) :) :) :) (And WHERE are all my gonks???????!) :)
""Better out than in""

It can be helpful using the forum to let off steam, otherwise we would explode and no coming back from it. Here you are among 'cyber' friends who can relate to what you are sharing, will never judge you and be there with you to walk alongside you.

You give sound advice to so many members on here Mrs A, have held the hands of them too. Let all of us help support you now and help you over what is yet another hurdle carers face. Even the greatest of athletes don't also make a successful jump but it doesn't stop them from coming back to try it all again the next time.

Let your rock settle where it is for now, no need to try move forward every day. Gather your strength, recover from your flu and once you are back to full strength then look ahead. One day at a time, one hurdle at a time .........

We are not super humans no matter how much we try.

x x
Thank you for the lovely, lovely words Rosemary, tho I've never ever been compared to a great athlete before!!! The mental picture and the reality are very far apart :D :D

I am feeling physically better but emotionally low still. Hubby did step up a bit and we are trying to find a family counsellor so son gets into counselling by the back door. However the first one we found only has room to see 2 people at once, so only very very small families need apply ho hum.

Rock was a bit more proactive today, but why oh why does it take such a major meltdown from me to instigate it ? ( rhetorical question, no answers needed)
No, but I will reply Mrs A.
It seems to be so common in lots of situations that a meltdown is needed to get reactions. When my daughter's were at home, it would be a temper tantrum that made them think!! When I was overtired or something and it wasn't noticed. Hubby would then realise and intervene.Then I would feel awful lol! Sometimes it's their turn now for the very rare meltdown within the family units. Then they tell me about it. Ho hum!
I think you are a rock and a compassionate one at that xx
Thanks Pet
Yes back in the teen years that's what I thought. He'll learn from his mistakes I thought. But no he just keeps repeating the same inactive behaviours that almost amounts to self harm. He is much better than a year ago but its still very very frustrating and worrying.

I haven't post too much about him because I am so aware that all of you are dealing with lifelong or life limiting situations and I keep hoping that with professional counselling, time, firm love and support that he find ways of getting through his low self esteem and anxiety and become a functioning independent adult., and that I might gave a chance of not being a carer for a while.

Of course he doesn't see that he has a problem....quite often it's the rest of the world, or me, that's wrong.

If anyone has suggestions how I can get him to counselling please let me know
When M was 19 he moved from a boarding school where he had a member of staff to help him with everthing! Then he went to a farm college where he was supposed to do lots more thinking for himself. It was a tough fist term, but he did it. He did so well that he won a prize foroutstanding progress, and I even managed to get a third year funded. From there he went to a large residential home, a smaller home, supported living in a shared house, to finally living alone with support. For someone unable to read or write, it shows that sometimes we can have surprises. Obviously your son has different issues, but maybe once he leaves home, to somewhere that is properly staffed, he will find some incentive. When M comes home, he likes mum to lok after him!
Hmm, would simple bribery work I wonder??!!!

I'm a big fan of bribery over all - after all, we all have to be 'bribed' to have a job, don't we? Who of us would go to work if we didn't get 'bribed' with a salary, etc etc.

So, is there anything he really, really wants?? And use that as an incentive .....?

Sorry if that's (a) obvious and (b) been tried and failed!

Another thought, and sorry, again, if this is either obvious or inappropriate, but would working out be useful? Young men like to have 'good bods' (who doesn't!) and exercise does wonders for self-esteem. I'm wondering whether the 'bribe' could be, say, some sessions with a personal trainer. Most of them deal with the 'mental issues' as well because for most of us it's the 'mental blocks' that stop us being fit and healthy!!!! (My mental block is greed and laziness, sigh.)

Apols if I'm not being in the slightest helpful, and just lobbing useless stuff in from the sidelines.