To consider banning DS’s GF from staying over?(38 Posts)
Long story short: DS has been seeing this girl for around 6 months. She has an “Anxiety Disorder” and is scared of socialising.
She has got a lot worse recently, and refuses to eat anything when she comes to stay - this has the effect of causing her to behave in a manner that I can only describe as schizophrenic; e.g. she will start to scream and shout and punch herself in the face etc. When she feels worthless. My only similar experience was with my DM, whose dementia got worse as she forgot to drink anything and suffered with UTI’s which produced similar behaviour.
DS has tried to get her to seek medical help, but she refuses. From what I can gather,she has little/no support from her single parent mother, and her father is out of the picture. Her brother, who at 7 is 12 years her junior, is autistic, and gets all their mother’s attention.
Each time she stays over, her behaviour gets worse, she eats less and less and now refuses to shower, clean her teeth etc. Leaving DS to spend hours trying to get her to function.
Me and DH both work, and these late night psychotic episodes are not helping us to get a decent nights sleep when she is over, as we are constantly worried about what she might do next.
I want to tell her to seek medical help and not visit until she has her condition under control, as this behaviour is affecting the whole family.
I can’t provide the unconditional love and support she evidently needs, as this should come from her family, but as mother to DS, who clearly loves her dearly, should I be trying to do this?
I just feel as if it’s not my place - and don’t want, nor have the time, to have to deal with it either. AIBU?
YANBU, your DS can’t be this girls saviour and it’s not fair that her issues are affecting our household and family life.
YANBU - this sounds like a huge responsibility for your DS to 'manage'.
Coming to stay at your house is not good for her health. Having said that, she must be something out of the visits or why would she visit? It is an extraordinary situation and if you are unable or unwilling to assist your son support her then I have no advice, sorry. But hope there are helpful posts from other MNers.
No way should you help facilitate her being able to demonstrate that behaviour, she needs help and possibly the best way to do that is call the authorities when she has a psychotic episode and she becomes violent.
I know it sounds awful, but sometimes the only way to put a care plan into place for someone is to report them and let the authorities take it from there.
Oh dear, I’m so sorry this sounds awful. The poor girl is obviously ill and in need of help, but also the effect it’s having on you, your family and particularly DS is not healthy. Have you tried having a conversation with DS about what help/treatment his girlfriend is getting. I hate to say it but if it was my DS I’d be so worried about their future. Mental illness is a very scary area, but has to be tackled face on. Speak out. She needs professional help.
The lack of control, self harm, poor hygiene, and little appetite sound more like severe depression. Look on the MIND website, it has a lot of information your son and girlfriend might find helpful.
You should be proud of your son for trying to help her, a lot of people decide mental illness is too much hard work and don't bother.
You may like her a lot but your own family has to come first.
This is a massive strain on your DS who presumably has no training in any mental health illnesses. I’m amazed that after only 6 months he hasn’t bailed.
Personally, I would sit son down and advise him that you believe that th3 relationship is not healthy for either of them ATM and he needs to consider his options thoroughly. Does he really want to be spending his twenties/life dealing with this? And , very importantly beg him to use condoms. You do NOT want a baby being thrown into this equation.
This girl needs help. So I would consider carefully telling her that her behaviour is having a hugely negative effect on your family which you are not trained to cope with and until she seeks professional help she is no longer allowed to stay over at your house. I wouldn’t ban her from the house though as I wouldn’t want to alienate DS and you need to show some support.
Offer to accompany her to any medical appointments she has. This ensures you know she is having them/going and you also know what is going on. Tell her that she should have someone with her who can support her but isn’t so close that they get too involved with appointments. This is quite good advice anyway as if people are too emotionally vested then they often forget what has been said.
She really really needs help and I would be begging my son to consider whether or not she is emotionally ready and capable of relationship at the moment or if it is doing more harm than good. Would it not be wise for him to take a step back and be a very good supportive friend to her at the moment as surely relationship will just be complicating matters further. I would also consider recording her when she is having a psychotic episode to show the relevant medical authorities. This girl desperately needs help and if her own mother wont help her then it would be the decent thing for you to support her somewhat.
I was reading thought she is autistic from your description then read her brother is. She is autistic poor love. My sons both hit themselves they are both autistic. It is less
Diagnosed in girls.
It's not your job to sort her out but I would register my concerns with her mother.
Don't expect her mother to welcome this
It's not your job but if you can find it in your heart to help her, if you can sit down with DS first and then his girlfriend and talk with her about seeking the help which she absolutely needs. If you can find time, you could even go with her to the doctor. I know, this is not your job nor your responsibility but if it was your daughter and you couldn't be there for her, I'm sure you'd hope there was someone out there who could help her rather than think that she's someone else's problem (no judgement intended - I agree that it is not your responsibility).
I agree with planetcom.
My first thought was autism, and then when I read about her younger brother it made even more sense. Autistic girls are frequently misdiagnosed, because people think their behaviour is schizophrenic or that they are bipolar. Obviously this is not something to be ‘cured’ but the social aspect and depressive episodes are something that could be managed.
Could you please suggest some reading on Aspie Girls to her, there are checklists online to help recognise behaviours. If our suspicions are correct, then this could be a huge turning point in her life, and may help take some of the strain off your family if she receives the appropriate support. I understand that it is probably too much for your family to have to cope with, and to be fair it sounds like she is on a downward spiral.
Poor girl and you.
Tbh I immediately thought is she autistic. My 19 female cousin was only diagnosed at 14 and shows the same behaviours.
I would speak to her Mother somewhere neutral. Your DS sounds really kind and caring.
I think your son needs to insist that she seek help. I don't you can expect everyone to put themselves out to help you if you don't help yourself.
Thanks for all your advice and suggestions.
Firstly, GF lives in another town 50+ miles away and I’ve not met her Mother.
I can’t offer to attend treatments with her because of geographical and logistical difficulties - I work full-time, 30 miles away in the opposite direction from my house than where she lives. I also travel (abroad) for work frequently, and can’t, for example, take dependants leave to help as she’s not my DD.
DS has offered, but she refuses to accept she has a problem anyone can help her with.
I will talk to DS again and show him this thread: maybe we can come up with a plan of action as I have a short break coming up.
Appreciate all your advice, thanks👍🏻🙂
Does he really want to be spending his twenties/life dealing with this?
Would it not be wise for him to take a step back and be a very good supportive friend to her at the moment as surely relationship will just be complicating matters further.
When she has her next episode you can tell her that you are calling an ambulance (your house, your rules). It can be the only way to try and initiate help for those who will not accept they need help (& tbh she will almost certainly be able to refuse it, but at least she will be on the radar and some sort of dialogue about needing help will have been opened).
And yes also talk to your son about the responsibility and strain such s relationship brings. I had to call the police late the other night for someone who was posting very worrying things publically. Friends and family have been trying to get help for her for over 10 years but she refuses to accept there is anything wrong. It’s incredibly sad, she is now completely isolated with no life. It’s also extremely frustrating that it is so hard to get anyone to act. But having seen people trying to help this person for years and years I would be advising any son of mine to step back from a relationship unless she sought help herself. He doesn’t have to abandon her but as others said he can’t save her and tbh she doesn’t sound well enough for a relationship.
I wouldn't start diagnosing her with things or going to medical appointments, and I'm not sure I would encourage DS to either (if it turns out that she has care needs of whatever kind, you don't want you or him to be noted down as the only person taking responsible for her). I would phone her mother.
You sound lovely and so does your son, bit you can't be everyone's saviour.
It sounds like he is trying to get her help and she's refusing. The kindest thing to do might be to report her as a vulnerable adult and then hopefully someone external will get involved.
I wouldn't ban her from the house, but would stop overnights and encourage your son to be using condoms. Do not let hin rely on her saying she is on the pill etc. A 'surprise' baby doesn't need to be brought into this.
I feel for everyone in this situation but thinking about this as if I were you I would absolutely not want to take on the responsibility and stress of this. I think it is perfectly fine for you to say to your ds that you don’t want her - or anyone, you don’t have to make it specific to her- to stay over, and if he wants to have girlfriends to stay then he really needs to get his own place. At 23 that is perfectly reasonable.
I have a child of 6 with severe autism and a teen of 15 so I can only imagine how stressed her parents must be with everything but this isn’t your problem to solve. As hard as that sounds!
Your son has an amazing caring heart but unless his GF accepts that she requires some help, all I can see in his future is heartache and that would be a shame.
Fingers crossed with some forthrightness from you and your DH will have the ball rolling, even a slow roll at this stage would be a start.
Your son sounds like a real gentlemen because most guys probably would have ran for the hills by now. Sounds to be like she has autism. Surely her mother should have realised this having an autistic son.
Your son sounds like her only support system and that’s a lot of burden for a 23 year old. Being only just her bf. I think you’ve taken on enough already. It isn’t your issue it’s her mothers. I have an autistic son, yes he takes up a lot of my time but I still know every single thing going on with my DD. I always make time for her. Maybe the Mum doesn’t pay too much attention because she thinks she’s 19 and can manage by herself.
'Does he really want to be spending his twenties/life dealing with this?
Would it not be wise for him to take a step back and be a very good supportive friend to her at the moment as surely relationship will just be complicating matters further.'
Totally this, also he is in danger of becoming her carer and the relationship sounds co dependent imho .
Yadnbu OP .
I think your son needs to take a step back here too. It sounds harsh but he's in danger of ruining his young adult life here.
Would phoning an ambulance for her if she's doing this be an option? Then she might get the help she needs. Could you call adult services and give her details for them to investigate and support,
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