Hi all, I've just joined this community group so all new to me! I have a 27 year old son with a learning difficulty. He has been working part time as a volunteer but due to corona virus he is not currently doing anything and this is having a very negative effect on him, he is very anxious about returning to do any kind of work and has lost all his confidence. Is anyone else experiencing this? I would very much like to hear from anyone in a similar situation. My son attended mainstream school but with a statement of educational needs. He went to college with a lot of support in place, then he went on a supported internship scheme, then a princes trust course, then he had several voluntary work jobs but not actually been employed. We need help with accessing support locally, and to find out what help is available to us with regards to employment, social interaction and possibly independent living, and would welcome any advice.
Is it normal for me to be so worried for my son? - Mencap
Welcome and thank you for posting.
Worrying about your son is completely natural. It sounds like he was doing very well, but that this year has been tough for him (and you).
I think a lot of people will find getting back to normal life hard after all these lockdowns.
There will still be support out there - but it is likely to be mainly online at the moment. How does your son get on with keeping in touch online?
Feeling anxious at the moment is understandable too. Have you seen our Easy Read guide about coping with difficult feelings during coronavirus - mencap.org.uk/sites/default...
I hope this helps a little.
Thank you Sarah, unfortunately he isn’t good communicating online or on the phone so I do think we will have to wait until the restrictions lift to enable us to meet face to face. As I’m new to this site I haven’t had chance to read much as yet but will definitely have a look, Thankyou.
Hi Bay 55 My son is 28 and has learning disabilities autism and suffers with his mental health .
He was volunteering at a farm which he loved .
Unfortunately because of covid this has stopped and his anxiety has increased greatly and his confidence and general mood is very low .
I also worry about him a great deal and it isn’t easy trying to find things to occupy him .
I am also looking in to supported living for him but again with all the restrictions this has been put on hold .
Does your son receive direct payments?
My son does and I use it to pay for a support worker for 12 hours a week .
The support worker is covid tested twice a week and it’s always the same one .
It’s hard as there’s not much to do at the moment but they go out for walks and do some basic cooking and play simple board games .
It helps for them to have some one else to interact with and helps to keep social skills .
It will also give you a little break .
If your son has a social worker give her a call and explain you would like some support .
Hi Teachginge64, Thank you for your reply, my son does not receive direct payments but I assume you mean this would be money we would receive once he has been assessed by social services? The only money he receives is esa. If we could have a support worker I do think that would help him but I’m guessing this will be difficult due to covid right now. How did you start the process of getting a support worker?
Hi Bay 55 You need to get in touch with the vulnerable adults social care team at your local authority .
Tell them you are requesting a needs assessment for your son .
Don’t be fobbed off by them or told they aren’t working due to covid .
Social workers are still working even if only by remote .
Your son is entitled to a assessment .
Tell them you are worried about him and need support .
If you are looking at supported living for his future he will need a social worker to help find him a suitable placement for his needs .
Hope this helps ,let me know how you get on .
Thank you, I will definitely look into this, although my son finds it very difficult talking to people remotely, however we may be able to get the ball rolling.
Your son shouldn’t need to do a lot of talking remotely .My son will hardly talk at all remotely but you should be able to speak on your sons behalf and explain how hard it is for him .Please give them a call and start the ball rolling , be polite but firm and assertive .
Once the process has begun it may ease your worries a little . Good luck .
I too have a 28 year old son with learning difficulties and ASD. He was on a support plan in South Yorkshire for 7 years which helped him with living independently eventually got a permanent part-time job. He returned home last year with a plan to start saving and start a new phase in his own home.. he managed to save and was managing his own finances very well. Long story short, he met someone online who befriended him, fleeced him of every penny and left him nearly £20k of debts within a 1 month!
We are so heartbroken now.
We have reported this to the national fraud agency. The bank and the other financial company where the loans were taken out are currently investigating it but said that it's not fraud as my son gave his bank details to the person online.
Anyone has any further advice?
I’m so sorry Cjson, how devastating for you, especially as your son was doing so well and making his own way in the world. I don’t think people understand how hard it is when you have a child with difficulties, and that feeling you have when they finally start to accomplish things that you never thought they would! but then.... for someone to take advantage of your son in this way is heartbreaking. I imagine that he’s just as devastated to have been lied to by someone he had started to trust. I hope there is something that can be done about this for all your sakes.
I have currently been working (before lockdown) at my local Mencap shop. We have many adverse adults which help with either steaming clothes, sorting out stock etc. Due to their condition they do not understand their importance..... but they are.... I make sure I explain their role and work ethic in the community.
Hi Bay55, My son is 28, lives in Wiltshire in a private rented house. He has access to care 24/7 from a care provider. He has cerebral palsy, is in a wheelchair, doesn't work. He's generally happy, loves computer games. I would say we were lucky to have a very good social worker who did her best to help him get access to suitable accommodation, lucky a nice house became available when he needed it, lucky to find a very good advocate for him who knew the Care Act and what he was untitled to and knew the social work system and wouldn't let him be pushed around.
I would talk to your Council Adult Services and/or look for an advocate. Get advice.
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