LB is upstairs, muttering and smacking his legs, shouting out and watching scrap metal videos on youtube. We had a burst of sunshine this afternoon when he came down for a piece of coffee cake and chuckled about how good it was. Funny how tiny snatches of what was can be so powerful. I went up to see him a short while later but he was talking a bizarre type of gibberish and looked at me with hatred. He muttered about how Sara had been killed. “Ok, matey, I’ll be downstairs if you need anything”, I said,” [fake] cheerfully.
We are occupying this strange, exhausting, stressful space at the moment. He’s threatened Rich but remains OK with Tom and Owen. We have the medication to knock him out if necessary, though where the line is drawn between deciding he needs medicating before it’s too late to get him to take it isn’t clear. We are piecing together strategies; not say no to him outright, prepare him carefully for any expectation he will do something, listening constantly for any shift in tone or intensity, mentioning any past special interest (Mighty Boosh, Irish lorries, cross channel ferries) to try to snap him, even fleetingly, into the coffee cake mood.
Today I chased up social care. Yes, despite the set of exchanges on Friday afternoon with the learning disability team, I had to contact them. The duty Care Manager seemed active and concerned which is great. He put me in touch with someone from Southern Health Outreach (based at Saxon House, the building with the snooker table). I rang them and have an appointment for April 3rd. Seventeen long days away. The psychiatrist rang straight after. She suggested we meet or have a telephone consultation soon. Er, right now would be good, I said. She found her notes, listened to me (without really listening) and suggested doubling his anti-depressant. We are meeting her in a week to see if this has helped. The psychologist was already booked in to meet us on Thursday. That is
no support our support right now.
I’m writing these miserable posts because I think that we shouldn’t (not we as in our family but we as in every family with a dude like LB) be in this position. It screams to me that support and services are woefully inadequate and structured in a way that ultimately cause harm rather than good. LB’s following in almost identical footprints to a classmate, a situation I never dreamed of six months ago.
Now I ain’t a psychologist, or a psychiatrist, but I think LB probably wanted a mate, a girlfriend and a slightly different structure to his life. And now he’s retreating into some hideous fantasy type world that has got trouble written all over it. Doubling anti-depressants and organising late in the day, middle aged carers isn’t going to do an awful lot. But hopefully I’m wrong.