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Problems with ds not looking after himself and dh not wanting to get him help

(81 Posts)
dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 08:18:19

ds has dropped out of uni and has spent a year at home. He has not signed on so just sponging off us. He went out with dh last night and I went in his room to get washing. It was squalid. Moth lavae in clothes and the carpet, wet towels, rubbish and plates and cups.
He came back and felt that his space had been invaded. We had words and I said keeping carpet clean is non negotiable as condition of living here. He stomped off to the river and I asked dh to follow him, take his phone and call police. Dh eventually went but came back without finding ds and refused to call police. ds came back later and I got out of the way. This is getting long, sorry. dh slept on the sofa. Back story = I work full time and dh doesn't. We have had major rows about cleaning as I do not have enough free time at the weekend to do it all. Dh won't let me get a cleaner. I want to get professional help for ds but dh doesn't. What can I do?

dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 11:33:52

shape up or ship out talk to ds, or to dh, or to both?

I did buy a magnetic white board for the fridge a few months back and write a list of jobs on it but it disappeared. Maybe time to get a bigger one and nail it to the wall...

Lweji Sun 13-Oct-13 11:39:11

I'd say both.

If your OH is not pulling his weight, not financially nor work wise, what is he doing at home? Sponging off you, as your DS is?

It's not his space, is it? It's yours, in your home.
And if they don't allow a cleaner (WTF?) they should do it themselves.

What's your home situation? Do you own or rent? If you were renting, I'd be tempted to leave and let them to it.

specialsubject Sun 13-Oct-13 11:47:02

why do you bother? You seem to be provider and cleaner, where's the fun, respect etc in your life?

from what you tell us, you are married to a lazy individual and have bred another. You and the girls deserve better.

I also vote for 'shape up or ship out'.

Fairylea Sun 13-Oct-13 13:44:56

Where has this inheritance money come from?

I wonder if he is using the fact he has some money (and I'm assuming it's a reasonable amount if you're suggesting he can fund travelling from it) as an excuse to sit on his bum and not do anything.

Do you think that might be the case?

Juliaparker25 Sun 13-Oct-13 15:36:47

He is doing dope ....My DD did this at Uni and is still suffering 10 years later with all sorts of mental problems.....It affects some people that way , he needs professional help , ok he should not have indulged but when they are that young they, as you are aware, know everything , but we know they absolutely don't .............

Twinklestein Sun 13-Oct-13 16:20:48

The fact that he dropped out of uni after withdrawing to his room indicates fairly major problems. It's quite possible that he is suffering from depression or anxiety or both. To not even manage to sign on implies problems coping with that situation, if it's not just bone idleness.
The fact that he now only goes out once a week with your husband adds to this picture.

You need to get to the bottom of the what the issues are here: is it simply laziness & apathy; or does he need mental health treatment to get him back on track.

I really agree with Kernowgal's post:

Anyway, upshot of this is: make him an appointment at the GP and get him prescribed with ADs or beta blockers or whatever he needs. Then give him a list of jobs around the house, nothing too onerous, but with deadlines. I firmly believe that someone's self-worth is dependent on them feeling like they're making a useful contribution, even if it is just ticking off a load of housework tasks that someone else has asked them to do.

I don't think it is at all sensible to encourage him to travel abroad in his current state, if he has difficulty making friends, he could spend a very, very lonely time that would not be good for his mental health.

Perhaps that could be a longer term goal?

As per the cleaner: you work full time, you pay a cleaner if you want to. Give your husband the choice of either a) cleaning properly or b) paying someone else to do it.

Rosencrantz Sun 13-Oct-13 16:33:12

Why hasn't your son signed on? That is non negotiable in my book. MAKE him get off his arse.

dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 17:14:12

I don't know how to physically make him sign on. If dh had taken him down originally maybe it would have helped. As I understand it he went down and was told to wait for a phone call for an appointment that never came. Have just had a shouting match with ds and he has admitted that he was starving himself in his room at uni before I found out from his tutor that he had dropped out (long story - he wasn't answering his phone and so I asked if he had been in lectures) Apparently I have always shouted at him. Never respected his space. But mother's clean their children's rooms don't they? If they don't it is neglect. I even got paid for cleaning my friends childrens' rooms at one point. I think respecting his space is cleaning the windows and keeping it nice, isn't it? The girls never had such a problem with my occasional cleaning and tidying.
BTW, he has not done drugs, he doesn't drink either. I do think he is depressed.

scallopsrgreat Sun 13-Oct-13 17:45:33

I think he is a lazy arse and you and your DH are enabling it. Why was he starving himself? Was it money or he couldn't/wouldn't cook?

I think most parents make their children's tidy their rooms. Mine certainly did.

The problem is that you and especially your dh are teaching your son to have a sense of entitlement. Can you see how this might translate if he starts having a girlfriend or living with someone? He will expect them to be tidying up for them, support them etc. Do you really want him to treat women like that?

Life is too cozy for him at home. Stop cooking washing and tidying for the both of them. Hoover the places you want to live in. Start charging him for staying with you as well. If he doesn't pay stop buying food for him.

If you can't do that or it doesn't work, leave them to it as someone else suggested. Tbh all I am hearing from you are reasons why your son is able to continue to take the piss.

Rosencrantz Sun 13-Oct-13 18:17:23

I don't know how to physically make him sign on.

You tell him he has to, and that he has to move out if he doesn't. He's an adult ffs.

The above poster is right. He is acting this way because you are enabling him to. Step up and parent your child. Get him seen by a doctor and to a job centre.

dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 18:17:44

That's really constructive advice scallops hmm

I can't leave ds to it as you suggest, if he was living on his own I would get social services on to him as they could get a warrant to assess his mental health. I am very worried about him, but dh won't take him to the doctor.
Besides which I do not do the cooking, washing and tidying. We have a rota for cooking, which ds takes part in, dh does the washing and tries to tidy.
It is just the cleaning that is bugging me, and ds's room. I end up cleaning the common areas but resent the fact that I don't have time to do stuff that I need to do.

Rosencrantz Sun 13-Oct-13 18:18:33

Never respected his space.

It's not his space. It is yours. He is contributing nothing to your home - so the room is yours, not his.

dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 18:19:00

You are missing the point, rosen

Rosencrantz Sun 13-Oct-13 18:20:25

I'm not. I'm just a firm believer in tough love. It worked wonders for me at 19 when I was in a similar position. Don't think I've ever respected my parents more, than when they forced me to get my life together, get seen by a doctor and move towards getting over my mental illness.

I would have to place a proportion on the blame for this sorry situation on both you and your husband. Your H has particularly enabled his son and not wanting to get help for his son (due to perceived and misplaced shame and embarrassment from the curtain twiching neighbours?. That is why my relatives refused mental health services for their son) will not help him or his son. Your son too seems to have been allowed back home with no conditions whatsoever on doing any chores let alone earn his keep. You are trying to keep a sinking ship afloat at great personal cost to your own emotional health and wellbeing.

Is he the eldest of your children?.

Another problem here is that you as parents cannot work together let alone present a united front to this man. He as a result can and does do as he pleases.

Where did the rot really start here with regards to your son, when did it all start to go wrong?. Be honest; have you as a couple excused him and enabled him to the hilt?. Have you excused and enabled your lazy H to the hilt as well, your go getting nature let him off the hook of actually doing anything because he knew that you would do it all anyway.

These sorts of situations as well do not happen overnight, they build up over a period of some years. My ILs are living the life that you are now living 30 years on with their son. He also had a myriad of issues which really started in his teens.

Your son will likely never leave home if you allow this situation to continue as it is. Why should he when bed and board is provided for?.

What do you get out of the relationship with your H now, why are you actually together?.

And he certainly does not respect you or your H; he likely despises your very beings. How can he respect anyone else when this person can barely disguise his own contempt for himself.

A GP could assess his mental health but they need to be aware of your son. Social services won't want to know because he is an adult. Also they are overstretched.

Kundry Sun 13-Oct-13 18:25:03

Don't want to scare you but going to college, not fitting in, withdrawing to a room to the extent of not eating, not cleaning to the point of infestation, a previously bright child not having the skills to sign on all indicate a very serious mental health problem.

Yes, they could just be laziness, failing to grow up or a newly acquired dope habit - but to a doctor this would be screaming possible onset of schizophrenia.

You urgently need to get him to a doctor - and if he won't go, this is something they would take seriously enough to see him at home.

Matildathecat Sun 13-Oct-13 18:40:12

Agree with Kundry. The cleaning is a symptom of the problem, not the problem itself.

There's no reason at all why you can't speak to the GP and explain what's happening. kundrys first sentence is what you need to concentrate on.

The issues with your DH are different and frankly odd. If he really won't support you with helping your son then you have to go it alone. The cleaning stuff I would just ditto what's been said.

Best wishes to you, you really have a lot on your plate.

tingle1 Sun 13-Oct-13 18:44:47

Op, why do you insist on cleaning your grown sons room? and, why in your first post did you think of calling the police?

dhisaconspiracytheorist Sun 13-Oct-13 18:50:27

I don't insist on cleaning his room. If I'd been cleaning it, it wouldn't have been infested, would it? I only removed clothing for washing and vacuumed the worst of the infestation and left the vacuum for him to finish the job.
I thought of calling the police because there is a river nearby and that was where he said he was going. I was terrified that he was going to jump in.

summertimeandthelivingiseasy Sun 13-Oct-13 18:58:18

Local MIND groups run courses such as Self Esteem, and Getting back into work. Ours cost about £99, or free if signed on. If he has inheritance money, he could use this?

MrsMinkBernardLundy Sun 13-Oct-13 19:02:28

Op i think he needs help. he also needs to help himself.
was there ever any sport he was interested in or cycling/bikes or cars?

I am a big believer in exercise being a great healer when it comes to MH and also productivity. if he were interested in bikes then there may be a bike repair/recycle scheme nearby. lots of people i know who have had work issues have done this or wildlife trust volunteering to get them out. they meet people of similar interests so it is less stressful than work/interviews.

Signing on- he can take an advocate with him. or see gp and get assessed for incapacity.

Kundry Sun 13-Oct-13 19:04:16

I think this is nothing to do with cleaning or OP's son being told to buck his ideas up. Suggesting she just stops cleaning his room isn't really helpful.

Lots of people hate college, very very few hate it so much they starve themselves rather than go into a shared college. Most of these will have serious problems that require medical help not just some support and a boot up the arse - this could be any of severe depression, severe anxiety, OCD, eating disorders or psychosis.

I also wonder if the OP's username is significant - if her DH really is a conspiracy theorist, he may well want to be softly softly and not seek medical advice for his son. Or for example call the police when his seriously ill son is missing.

If your DH won't take action, calling your GP to discuss may help you.

MrsMinkBernardLundy Sun 13-Oct-13 19:04:23

Or dog walking if he likes animals?

It is not somethibg that will get better by itself if left to fester. he needs to get up and out.

mercibucket Sun 13-Oct-13 19:06:28

dont listen to posters saying lazy etc

this sounds like a mental health problem. encouraging travel is a bad idea right now. focus on getting him to go and see the gp, or pay for private consultation with a psychologist, and from there, try getting him to claim benefits

the mind website has some useful advice about what to say and not to say
the pull yourself together school of thought is not recommended!

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