Making life better in disadvantaged communities - our thoughts on everything - from Spirit Lake Consulting, Inc.
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I don't know how many of you here have kids with disabilities but here is my problem. My daughter shuts me out when she has problems. I won't hear from her. She will get her phone turned off for not paying it or her latest boyfriend will throw her out or she will lose her job and she won't call me. I can't help her unless she lets me but she is so ashamed of having messed up tha I won't here from her for days or weeks. I worry like crazy because I know it means she is not okay. Now I have not heard from her for days and I am almost sure it means she lost that job she just got. People tell me she needs to be independent and live on her own. She is not living on her own. Living on one friend's couch and drinking and living on another friend's couch next week is not being on her own. Anyone have any ideas?
I don't have a magic cure. I do know that it is easy for other people to give advice when it is not THEIR child involved. Letting her live on her own and be her own person sounds great in theory, but you know your daughter. If she cannot make decisions well, as a last resort, you can try for a court-appointed guardianship if she is mentally retarded or mentally ill. I mean, that should be a LAST resort. There are a whole lot of things you should do before that. One suggestion I have is that you discuss possible strategies when she is NOT having problems. For example, when she has a place to live, either with you or a friend, you could ask her what her plans are long-term. Is she planning on finding her own place? If so, where is she thinking of working to pay for it? Help her figure out how to live on her own.
As far as not calling, maybe she doesn't want to worry you when she is having problems. Do you tell her how much you worry when you don't hear from her? It is possible she is trying not to be a burden by not calling you. Often people think it should be obvious how they feel when to other people it is anything but obvious.