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How to help someone who won't seek outside help

(18 Posts)
JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 17:08:32

I need advice/help My teenage son is depressed and low, he has self harmed in the past, only slightly and is so unhappy. He sent me a note saying he needs help but refuses outside help. He point blank won't go to GP and won't let me call a GP to our home. I am the only person he has to talk to and he trusts me to do the right thing. I am at a loss what to do next. He feels a failure and useless yet he is very bright and loving. I feel the failure in not being able to help my child. sad

JeanSeberg Thu 27-Mar-14 17:25:14

Very sorry to read this. Is he living at home and at school/college?

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 17:33:00

yes at home but not at school or college, he has left school and unwilling/unable to do anything else at present

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 17:41:47

he left school at 13 and i home -schooled due to the problems he had. Hated school with a passion and would be physically ill when I forced him. He brightened when I finally took him out of school but now realises he doesn't know where to turn next. He hates socialising. He saw CAHMs at 13 but it wasnt helpful at all. He didnt like it and told them what they wanted to hear. Eventually they said school and social phobia.

JeanSeberg Thu 27-Mar-14 18:07:38


How old is he now?

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 19:24:53

16, almost 17

JeanSeberg Thu 27-Mar-14 19:49:35

I'm sorry I feel helpless. I hope someone more useful will be along shortly. Could you move to chat for more traffic?

Do you think he would consider telephone support? Are there any other family members who he might open up to ?

clareG65 Thu 27-Mar-14 21:20:53

I really feel for you. I have a 16 year old daughter who is depressed, has self-harmed and overdosed a while ago. She flatly refuses any help whatsoever and won't even talk to me. Your son has taken a huge step in telling you he wants help. You need to make sure you get support for you if you are his only support. I made an appointment with the doctor for my daughter and when she refused to go I went instead. The doctor was fine with it and was very helpful giving me ideas of what I could do. I made a second appointment and DD did go to that - I think once she knew I would go if she didn't she felt more inclined to go. You've got a harder problem as your son has already experienced CAMHS so presumably he feels he's 'been there, done that'. My doctor has given me some links to online help and my daughter did say she would find that more acceptable than face to face counselling. Having said that, she hasn't used any of the links yet. It's just so hard isn't it.
PM me if you want to. I don't have many ideas but I can certainly sympathise.

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 21:47:09

clareG65 thanks so much. It's nice to know it's not just us going through this. I did try go docs on his behalf today but couldnt get an appointment. I'm also scared that if I tell all to a doctor they will try and enforce some sort of intervention against my son's will and this would be catastrophic in my opinion, as he likes it to move at his own pace. I have given him some links for online to look himself and will keep lines of communication open. He wanted to try calms (medication for anxiety) but It says not for under 18s so I'm reluctant to let him have them. Good luck with your daughter too. It's so easy for people to say pull yourself together but our children simply cannot.

JeanSeberg Thu 27-Mar-14 22:12:45

Could this be a suitable alternative to Kalms?

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 22:22:05

Thanks a friend of mine suggested that tonight too so I'm gonna try get some tomorrow for him. He just gave me a hug and i'm now cooking him a pizza. I want him to know how much I love and support him. He said he looked at the links I gave him but they didnt do much so I will search for more

JeanSeberg Thu 27-Mar-14 22:27:11

Well that sounds like a bit of good news. He's open to suggestions of looking for helpful sites and he's keeping the lines of communication open.

You say you've taught him yourself. What are his favourite academic subjects and his real strengths?

Please keep posting on here and thanks for you and your son.

JustMyself46 Thu 27-Mar-14 22:54:06

Art is his fave subject but lately he isn't in the mood to draw though he's very talented. thanks

anthropology Fri 28-Mar-14 10:31:57

I wonder has your son ever been educationally assessed by an ed psych ? I wonder if he would consider that as its a test rather than talking? for my DD the assessment (wisc4) helped understand some reasons for school anxiety (memory processing, ASD traits) etc.

Camhs is hit and miss but therapy would help him learn skills to manage his anxiety.I think it must be difficult not to know other teens in a similar position(and huge pressure on you)....could he attend college part time for an Art A level perhaps or get an art tutor to help him create a portfolio. He may find getting back into education at this age, at a college, different to school as he could be in part time.

I doubt anyone would stage an intervention if he is not at danger of harming himself or others so try not to worry . Positive thing is he is asking you for help. best of luck.

clareG65 Sat 29-Mar-14 08:50:58

I don't think there's much chance of the doctor trying to force treatment on him. Even when my daughter was 15 the message I got from everyone was if she didn't want to engage there was nothing they could do which I understood but found (and still find) frustrating). My doctor is very good about seeing me instead of her, although, to be fair, I haven't done that since she became 16 so I don't know if that will change now. If it does, I will simply make appointments in my name and ask for support for me in how to cope with her. I am considering asking for counselling for myself and I am very aware that my attitude rubs off on her, and also, that it's very easy for me to be overwhelmed by her mood. My daughter likes being in the car so we sometimes go for drives. She doesn't talk though - just puts the radio on! Hope you have a good weekend.

justgutted Tue 01-Apr-14 11:37:08

would he consider seeing a private counsellor if finances allow? I have just found one that I am going to try for my dd - she specialises in 8 - 16 year olds and works through creative media (eg art) as well as talking therapy (and is BACP registered) maybe have a look for something like that in your area as an alternative to CAMHS?
Good luck.

JustMyself46 Fri 04-Apr-14 18:42:33

Thanks for the messages haven't been on as much as both my parents are in hospital so coping with that also as a single parent is tough. Also my daughter has been struggling a little with option choices so have been feeling very overwhelmed of late. I wrote my son a letter about how I want so much to help but didn't know how to if he wouldnt accept help. It did the trick, if only for one day, he came down and spent the whole day out of his room interacting with myself and our pets. So that's a bonus. As for a counsellor he point blank refuses to speak to anyone. There has also been some revelations in as to why he feel as he does but I'd rather not go into that right now as I am struggling to come to terms with out. I will endeavor to continue to support as best as I can and when time allows will get some help for me, into how to help him smile

JustMyself46 Fri 04-Apr-14 18:44:35

And to all who commented good luck with your families also. Having this support is helpful as no one seems to understand the pressure thanks

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