When you know your adult son is deeply unhappy and lonely?

(33 Posts)
hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Mon 08-Oct-12 22:53:48

My DS is 20, he has Asperger's and lives about 2.5 hours away from home. I know he's deeply unhappy and lonely, his boss is making his life hell and he's lonely because his autism means making friends is hard for him. He lives in an extremely grotty bedsit with poor heating, manky sanitary conditions and poor security.

I am very worried about his mental health but I don't know what to do.

Selks Mon 08-Oct-12 22:58:39

Sorry to hear that your son is having a difficult time.
It's a tricky one though...what does he feel about his situation? What does he want to do about it, if anything?

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Mon 08-Oct-12 23:04:22

He sways between wanting to stick it out and wanting to come home. I think he'll do the former (unless he has an autistic meltdown one day in which case he'll leave and won't go back). I've offered to help him with a deposit for a new bedsit but he won't accept the money. I think it's the combination of a bullying boss and poor living conditions that are getting to him. He could do one or the other but not both things.

AnyFucker Mon 08-Oct-12 23:07:56

I am really sorry to hear this. It must be hell knowing how unhappy he is, and you cannot help him directly.

Just support him form a distance, and make it clear you will back him up whatever he decides to do. That is all you can do.

googlenut Mon 08-Oct-12 23:17:06

It must be so painful for you to feel like this - I have a much younger son with autism and I worry I will be in the same situation.
There are lots of positives- he has a job and living independently. What job is it-could he do a night class to improve his job prospects and maybe meet someone to? Locally if he lives in a city there are usually some support gps if he is in a city. Facebook? What are his hobbies?

HansieMom Mon 08-Oct-12 23:23:47

I would want to rescue him. Get him home, he can get a new job (how reasonable is that assumption?), and he can be happier. I think a person with autism would need longer than NT (neurotypical) to be self sufficient.

defineme Mon 08-Oct-12 23:28:45

I have a ds who's 10 with as.
If it was me I'd try and persuade him to come home. I'm not saying that's right, but I know that's what I'd do.
I worry about the stats for asd and serious depression.

Brycie Mon 08-Oct-12 23:28:55

I agree with Hansie, and feel for you very much. Bring him home, it will help you both. Bless him.

Brycie Mon 08-Oct-12 23:30:43

He's still very young to be so unhappy, and he feels he should be more independent but he doesn't need to do this or prove anything. Perhaps you could insist he comes home, without doing anything to make it seem like a failure? I don't know how you'd achieve this.

Brycie Mon 08-Oct-12 23:31:45

Don't forget everything is HUGE at that age and perspective is limited. You can offer him that perspective. Work is not going to get any better, nor are friendships going to get easier, while he's so unhappy.

CagneyNLacey Mon 08-Oct-12 23:35:07

Could you maybe make out that he'd be doing you a favour by moving back? Failing that, if he absolutely won't move back could you make his living accommodation more pleasant and safer? Or move him closer maybe?

Really sorry to read this, it must be terrible for you.

Brycie Mon 08-Oct-12 23:43:58

That's what I was thinking Cagney. Say you need him at home, he may gratefully accept the excuse.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Mon 08-Oct-12 23:44:46

It is one of those quandaries. I'd love him to come home but his job is extremely unusual and he loves it, it's just his boss that is making his life hell. At the moment he wants to stick it out. He's making a good name for himself in his field. If I brought him home he'd resent me for taking that away from him.

Does this make me sound like one of those posters who throws up objections to everything everybody else posts? I hope not because that is not my intention.

Brycie Mon 08-Oct-12 23:49:39

No but now there are really good reasons for him to stay! So we all have to think round it. Can you send him cheer up parcels every week. How often can you visit. Do you write and phone every day. Can he drive - what about driving lessons to get him out and about. Why don't you go up and househunt with him. A smaller place, but cleaner, nicer? Insist on lending deposit. Any of that?

CagneyNLacey Mon 08-Oct-12 23:53:13

You just sound like a lovely mum, not someone objecting to suggestions.

Could you make the bedsit nicer to be in and maybe add some security? If it's cold, maybe get lots of throws and cushions. Help him make it look nice and as homely as possible, somewhere pleasant to go after bad day at work.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Mon 08-Oct-12 23:54:52

Parcels are a really good idea, thank you he'd love that. He can drive and has a car so he can get out and about. I text him most days but sending him a card or two might help him as well. I go over as often as I can and I am signed up to spareroom, I think I might have to line up a viewing or two and get him to humour his dear old ma by coming to see them with me. I don't feel I can insist he comes home but you're right about getting him moved and I do feel I can do that.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Mon 08-Oct-12 23:58:08

And yes, I can make his place he's in now nicer. He's been offered a sofabed and was quite keen to take it as he wanted a lounge space for his days off it needs a new mattress and I can sort that for him because I know his spare funds are £0.

Brycie Tue 09-Oct-12 00:00:49

smile yes I agree you do sound lovely. My mum used to send parcels when I was at uni, I can't tell you how much I appreciated them. I agree with what Cagney said about his place. Going home to a lovely warm, clean, organised place is everything. Well maybe not everything but it means so much.

Brycie Tue 09-Oct-12 00:02:41

We have got quite a bit of our furniture from those large charity furniture places. There is some quite good stuff to be had, and not expensive. Also, there are are halogen heaters (plug in, carry round, very light) which cost 9p a day to heat a room. They work instantly to heat a room up. Would this help?

AnyFucker Tue 09-Oct-12 00:03:03

will you be my mum too, please ?

Brycie Tue 09-Oct-12 00:04:03

Is he allowed to ppaint? If he doesn't move, a coat of white paint freshens things up beautiully.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 09-Oct-12 00:05:42

A halogen heater will help, he said last night the heating wasn't working.

Yes AnyFucker I'll be your mum too grin

Brycie Tue 09-Oct-12 00:15:15

Good luck. I can completely understand how you feel. I've got a slightly lost 18-year-old and can very well imagine it! The one thing I would say is, don't worry about "mothering" and mithering him. I bet you anything, he wants his mum to help. Even if you have to say, sorry I'm being a big soft mum but just let me do it - I think he wants you to.

Hell could you persuade him to find lodgings where he could be independant but part of a family ?

I have a lodger & he is lovely, we have an annexe so he can come & go but we chat most days & he'sjust brought me a bag of apples form his garden (only stays Mon - Fri which suits us but others offer long term lets)

Look here Lots of rooms to look at or he can put an as in.

Failing that is he comfident enough to go to more senior management or HR with a grievance against this boss?

Poor chap, must be worrying for you.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 09-Oct-12 16:23:20

No senior management to go to, he works for a on-man band type set up so his boss is the owner too. I have been looking on spareroom but didn't know how good/reliable it was so it is good to hear from someone who knows a bit about it. I'd like him to lodge with a family as he's actually a really nice lad when you get through his autism.

Thank you everyone for your wise words last night, they really helped.

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