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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.

trouble at mill....aspergers teen going through the teen thing.
30

pickyvic · 08/07/2009 17:07

hi all

apologies - this is really long!
can anyone give me any advice on this one - its a bit of a long story.

DS is 17. very aspergers but very able and wanting the whole independent teen thing. he was dx at 7 by liz newson at nottingham. fine.
he simply doesnt have the maturity to cope with what most other teens are doing now.

when he went to college last year, for the first time in his entire life he made friends, like in general. (he does have one life long friend who also has SN but he had always been bullied through school, so it was lovely for him to find his social feet, as it were.)

he has coasted through college this year, not managed it well at all really, but he is repeating some subjects next year and will be there for 3 years instead of 2. he has been assessed via college and they dx him with dyslexia, aswell as confirming his dx of aspergers, dyspraxia etc. he gets some support in college but not much in the great scheme of things. he has a laptop to use, a PDA to help him organise himself, that kind of thing.

last year he really shocked me. he became quite difficult to live with. when he wanted something he took it. he didnt seem to understand consequences or peoples hurt feelings when he hurt them. i know this is all very aspie. He wanted to talk to his friends more so he modified a sim card, then wrote a computer programme to top it up whenever it got to less than 50p.(he is a whizz with computers) he then hid my bank statements. he did this for months until i found out by accident. he had totally drained my bank account. when caught he showed no real remorse and his "sorry" was just a word. i tried to explain about trust etc. i thought he understood, and i decided to avoid a repeat performance i would get him a contract phone, give him the money each week (more than enough to cover the phone bill) and try to help him learn to budget with just this one bill to be responsible for. thing is he gets narky when people offer to help him. he seems quite arrogant sometimes, and wont allow anyone to help, he always says he knows even when he doesnt but i wanted him to learn to manage with money and understand its value.

He hasnt managed this either despite help. he has run up increasingly large phone bills. whenever something doesnt go his way he runs away. he has done it several times now.last time he went to the YMCA for 2 days. he did it again today. i cut his phone off because he wouldnt listen to me or accept that what he had done was wrong. he wouldnt discuss it. he wouldnt give me the phone so i gave him a choice - give me the phone until i decide on what to do next or have it cut off. he wouldnt give it to me so i rang and got it blocked. he stands and just lies to me, and its so bare faced, its sort of pathalogical and he believes his own lies. he said he would give me the phone, then refused a second later and said he didnt say it! and he ran away. again.

whats worse is that his friend with aspergers really needed him to go round this afternoon as he is suffering with extreme anxiety waiting for his A level results (he has been in hospital with it this week) and it was all arranged. he didnt let him know he wasnt going. he just took his precious laptop and did a bunk while i was in the shower. he acts like a 7 year old running away but now he is 17 i cant stop him. ive no idea where he is. his friend is upset with him and his friends mum has said she feels disappointed and that he has let his friend down. and he has. he has let me down again too.

he is on a waiting list to see a clinical psychologist but the waiting list is long. we seem to jog along just fine until something blows up and away he goes. back to square one. he is so completely clueless about hurting people, understanding consequences, managing money etc that i fear for him. the problem is he is so able people expect so much more from him and i know i am guilty of this too, but he cant keep hurting people, stealing from them, lying to them and expect to get away with it. im at a loss because i cannot make him understand even basic things.
has anyone got older aspies? independent aspies? i really worry that we are going to be Mrs Merton and Malcolm....

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pickyvic · 08/07/2009 20:17

no one? hopeful bump.

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pickyvic · 08/07/2009 20:23

he says he isnt coming home and has gone to YMCA.

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2shoes · 08/07/2009 22:22

sorry I can't advise as not my field(cp is) but am here to listen and support if that helps

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pickyvic · 08/07/2009 22:29

ok thanks anyway. ive phoned the ymca and left a message to get in touch with me if he shows up. ive no idea where he is tonight though.

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Goblinchild · 08/07/2009 22:29

I got muddled 2shoes, Pickyvic has posted in the Teens section as well as here!
Listening and support is always good, helps that you're not yelling into a vacuum.

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pickyvic · 08/07/2009 22:34

sorry - i did post similar but much much shorter in teens as i had got no response so far on this board. i think special needs children seems to get more response but i try to post in the relevant bit! and he is a teen! with sen...didnt know where to put this really. not to worry.

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2shoes · 08/07/2009 22:36

I think it is cos this topic is so new, linking in teens is good as custy might see it.

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maryz · 08/07/2009 22:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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maryz · 08/07/2009 22:56

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pickyvic · 09/07/2009 00:35

oh mary, thats really useful for me even just to know that im not on my own. he hasnt come home so im still pacing about. im starting to realise this is for life. i mostly accept everything and i try to understand his limitations but this is just so frustrating. but i think you know how im feeling.

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Goblinchild · 09/07/2009 06:52

Let us know when he turns up again vic, I'm going to be keeping my eye on this thread but can't post at work. Hope you got some sleep, and that DD is coping too.

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silverfrog · 09/07/2009 10:21

oh, pickyvic, that sounds very hard to deal with.

I have no experience with this as a parent (mine are 4 and 2) but you have described my brother almost exactly.

the disrespect for other people and their belongings, the lies, and the fact that, as you say, once they are this age/size, what on Earth can you do to stop them?

my mother really treid very hard to help my brother, but just like your ds, he would not accept help, and was convinced he was in the right. he too was very able, very charming (when he wanted to be) and peole always expected more form him.

I wish I could tell you how we managed, but in truth, we lurched along form one crisis to another.

the one thing I would warn about is making sure the clini9cal psych you see is a good one (is it possible for you to see them first?) when my brother was referred (and this is a long time ago now, in the early '90s probably, so things may have changed) he (bro) was reluctant to see them, as inhis view he didn't have a problem and hadn't doen anyhting wrong (despite knowign that stealing was wrong etc)

one of the very first things the psych said to him (as my brother tells it) was that it was a voluntary thing - no one could make him be there if he didn't want to be there (was probably trying to build up trust or something). it backfired predictably, and my brother walked out and refused to go back, as no one could make him.

I am so sorry you are going through this, it was very hard for me as a sibling, but it must have been almost unbearable for my mother.

I hope there are others along with a bit more help.

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pickyvic · 09/07/2009 11:53

thanks for the replies everyone, silverfrog this is what im worried about and your brother sounds very very similar to my DS. it just feels hopeless when its like this. i was just redoing his DLA forms and when i wrote everything down on paper i realised how disabled he is yet he is so able everyone treats him as any other normal teen.

he hasnt been in touch and i still dont know where he is or where he stayed last night.

he had a dentist appointment this morning which amazingly he showed up for (i range and checked!)
he told DD via msn that he would only come home if i unblock his phone. if i give in to blackmail this time ive done it for ever though so i cant. he told DD he will move out if not. i really dont think he is able to be independent tbh, but he may muddle along for a bit, though he cant cook for himself, he will live in the same clothes im guessing, i think this is a stand off. wonder who will hold out the longest. im cracking up here. im off shopping to get DD some more bits for her birthday, but ill be back later.
thanks for the support though - it really helps to "talk" about it. cheers all. x

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maryz · 09/07/2009 15:06

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pickyvic · 09/07/2009 19:20

thanks again. it is a comfort to not be totally alone in this, though i know its a pain in the arse all the same.

he is costing me dear at the moment. didnt sleep last night very much and im so weary with it all ive decided to take tomorrow off work, which has not been well received at work im afraid. i asked if i could take it as a days holiday or unpaid, but boss rang me at home to make his displeasure felt. i couldnt face getting up this morning but when i dreamt it was of DS, cant escape even when im asleep. i just thought he may come home because thats the last opportunity to come home before DDs birthday but why i keep on kidding myself that he has any regard for another living being i dont know. he doesnt.it wont make a jot of difference to him. i dont know what to do as he wont make any contact. the only way i could get in touch would be to unblock the phone, which i think would be a huge mistake, and he would flounce at everything so i suppose im just going to have to tough this one out.
i can honestly see him never getting in touch again unless he wants something. i wonder what happens if he presents as homeless? ive not had any word from the YMCA so ive no idea where he has gone. surely to god if he is crashing at a friends house the parents must be wondering by now? or i suppose he could be at the YMCA but asked them not to contact me. i dont know. maybe it would be better just to let him go and get with it for a while.

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maryz · 09/07/2009 19:45

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pickyvic · 09/07/2009 20:11

thanks mary - slight technical hitch is that i am the police. well - part time anyway - im a special at the local nick. ive not got them involved for a couple of reasons.

work - as in the day job - are being typically shite about this. its all i expected tbh.

there is no one ds can go to other than his own friends, i think he always goes to the same one but he cant stay indefinitely.

im thinking he will have to come back sooner or later to get some stuff - he only has the clothes he wore, he took no toiletries etc. so he cant be smelling too good by now.

im just feeling weary with it all. totally down because this is it. i have a son with a very selfish disability and he is never going to be any different. its all about him, all the time. it doesnt matter that i cant pay his bloody phone bills.
am waiting to go and pick DD up from a sports dinner at school then i can have a glass of wine.

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maryz · 09/07/2009 20:18

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pickyvic · 10/07/2009 12:08

just a quick update. he has presented himself as homeless - he has been to conexions, the YMCA and the council. however - i am one step behind and ive filled them all in on the circumstances.
he has told the YMCA he doesnt want to see me. The council now know he isnt homeless - he has a home and it was his choice to flounce out. she has suggested family mediation and is getting in touch with the family mediation officer.
im so hurt. ive had to fight tooth and nail for everything he has ever had, and this is the thanks i get. he has drained my bank account with nothing but a "sorry" when he got caught. he has caused me to have to take unpaid time of work, to have sleepless nights, and in 6 months when he does this he will be legally and adult, so that will be that.
this time he wont get offered any accommodation anyway so he is going to have no choice but sleep rough or come home. the YMCA have given me the address of his friend but i see nothing to be gained by going there at the moment. i want it to be his choice to come home, not my forcing him.
so we just have to sit tight now and see what happens next.

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pickyvic · 12/07/2009 02:30

a slightly happier update. DH bumped into DS in town yesterday - he asked him to come to to talk, which DS has done.

seems home really is better than the YMCA because he and DH talked and he has gone and got his stuff and come back.( i was out - which may have been a good thing!)

weve got some stuff to iron out obviously but he is back at least. (till next time...im sure there will be one)

he is on the waiting list to see clincial psychologist so hopefully we might get somewhere with some relaxation techniques or something. he does this when something is getting to him, and as usual he says he was "stressed". ive resisted saying join the bloody club...
but at least he is back and safe for now. phone is still blocked aswell - so i didnt cave in.
thankyou for the support. much appreciated. now we need to have a family meeting and discuss. (that should be fun. not.)

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Goblinchild · 12/07/2009 07:56

Your boy is right though vic, when he's stressed, he bails. It's a coping strategy not blackmail. he can't argue with you at an adult level, can't listen to you in a logical fashion when you and he are both angry, so he leaves.
G used to hit, so he'd clear himself a quiet space where his brain could switch into focusing on something that blocked out the world.
Then he went through a long period of yelling and storming away from the problem, because he began to recognise what a meltdown felt like as it was building, and storming off was a better choice than hitting. I supported him with this rather than trying to get him to sit and talk and explain because he really couldn't do that at that point. Not hitting was as good as it got.
Now he's managing to ignore/dismiss some triggers, or will take himself away from a situation quietly on most occasions.
But he still hasn't got the speed or verbal dexterity to cope with a verbal argument.
I'm glad your boy is back, and I think that family support and external help will be the best chance of him staying. He needs more than one coping strategy when the world isn't doing exactly what he wants it to do, and you need to use Aspie logic to clarify the rules and the strings attached to having a phone and living in a family. You were right not to cave, even though it was a long, hard couple of days.

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pickyvic · 12/07/2009 13:48

thanks goblin - i know your right. it is his coping mechanism but its such hard work! but your post makes sense. (as usual)

he does come back and i should hang on to that - he seems to need that space to work it out, its just hard for me when he does this and im not sure he cant keep turning up on his friends doorstep. he certainly cant keep saying he is homeless to all and sundry and expect them to house him.

we do need to work this one out. he needs somewhere to go and de stress so we need to find a "safehouse" or some other way of coping.

but he is back and non the worse for wear - i on the other hand am going slowly bonkers with it all.
thanks to everyone for the support with this - just having a place to vent has been so helpful.
x

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maryz · 12/07/2009 18:08

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pickyvic · 12/07/2009 23:35

mary thats interesting, and makes sense.

we had a proper talk today, and i think your right actually - he cant express himself at all. it seems this has come about because a friend whom he held in very high esteem has used him and its hurt him terribly. it was a girl who was bullied at school, but she moved school and got herself in the "in" crowd, and basically has told him she doesnt need him anymore. he is devestated and he cried while he was telling me, i think he has bottled this up and got more and more stressed and upset and he just got to apoint where he blew a fuse.

good thing is today we really talked. ive still not unblocked the phone but i will do, he says the money was run up trying to talk to her, and as she has cut him dead he wont need the higher tariff etc. my heart really went out to him actually. but we also talked about stress, about handling things and about finding some way of coping and about the reality of leaving home and what that entails. oh and money, budgeting and trust. who knows, id like to think some of it went in. fingers crossed. ill keep you posted. thanks for the support - it really helps to talk it over with others who actually understand. we'll see what tomorrow brings.

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Goblinchild · 12/07/2009 23:40

Hi vic.
Not the special girl who was his friend? No wonder he was close to the edge.
Get him a pay as you go phone, then you can allocate funding on a weekly basis and he can learn to manage his calls.
Good thing you've got that big, forgiving heart. I've said it before I know, but he'd be lost in the stream if you weren't there refusing to let him go.
How's your DD coping?

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