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Advice needed on whether to hold back or step in? Watch

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    Hi

    I would really like some advice from people on the situation my son is finding himself in at Uni, and as a parent what I should or shouldn’t be doing.

    My son is autistic and is in a flat with 3 others who have some kind of learning difficulty. My son and 2 of the other lads get on fantastically but they have an issue with one lad.

    Basically this lad seems to have a multitude of problems, is unidiagnosed with any disability therefore he receives no formal support at Uni, his parents have literally sent him to the Uni which is 6 hours away from them (pleased to get rid of him maybe??) and he is causing a lot of hassle for the others in the flat.

    He plays computer games until 4 or 5 am and constantly screams at the screen waking everybody up..the 3 other lads have had 2 flat meetings so far gently asking him to refrain. He does for 1night then starts up again. One lad has now been to the accomodation officer and is moving out to another hall as a result of this behaviour. So that leaves my son and one other lad to deal with the lad causing the problems.

    He leaves all his washing up to the point there’s is no place for the others to cook so my son has angrily done the washing up for him, Simply to have somewhere to cook his own meals. I have told him he mustn’t do this again as the lad will take advantage of this.

    Today the straw that has broken the camels back is that the lad is down to his last few hundred quid after spending ££££££S on computer games. He never leaves the flat apart from lectures despite the others offering to all go out together. As soon as my son comes back to the flat he literally wants to stay with my son for hours on end which is now becoming tiresome for him. He is now taking my son’s food from the kitchen and “borrowed a few slices of bread”which he needed but took a whole loaf. He has taken whole packets of ham and other items as well, despite my son telling him not to. Well today, now he is down to a few hundred quid to last until January he says that as my son receives extra help from DSA and student funding my son should “lend”him money to live on as apparently my son “can afford it”.

    I have given my son firm advice that this is now not on and he should contact the Disability Officer and student support for help. The lad who is moving out today could take no more of the situation so has moved to another hall, but my son likes his flat and room and I don’t see why he should move out to let this other lad off the hook.

    I have told my son that he should exhaust all avenues by talking with support officers and if he doesn’t get anywhere with it then I will step in as a last resort.

    Do you think this is right? Any advice would be gratefully received. My son is 18 and of course I should stand back as a parent and let him sort it out, but my son is now dreading returning to the flat everyday and with his autism he has enough to cope with as a fresher getting to know the Uni, lectures etc without this worry on top.
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    I wonder if Doonesbury has anytime to offer me advice on this please? You always offer such solid advice and I am quite worried about this issue.
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    I wonder how the boy can manage to study if he is always in his room or playing computer games...

    Has the whole flat complained to the accommodation officer? The accommodation officer can speak to the boy (or his parents) and try to persuade him to seek help. If the boy is disrupting the other students, then the accommodation officer is responsible for resolving the situation. It isn't fair on your son and his flatmate as they are paying for the accommodation.

    Your son shouldn't lend him money - he may spend it on computer games. If he is running out of money, and he is always in his room, how can he cope with uni life? I don't know if it is possible, but could you speak to his parents?
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    (Original post by Bernadette04)
    I wonder if Doonesbury has anytime to offer me advice on this please? You always offer such solid advice and I am quite worried about this issue.
    You're doing the right thing - the university needs to be made aware and take some action.
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    The lad who has now moved out today spoke to the accomodation officer..who recommended he move out! She has also asked the Hall Porters to have a quiet word with the lad causing the trouble.

    I really cannot see this lad getting through university at all. Apparently my son tells me that the lad is severely depressive, hence why he doesn’t leave the flat apart from lectures, but has no formal diagnosis. His parents live a 6 hours commute away, and I have no way of contacting them and to be honest they must know of his difficulties anyway.

    My son has a very easy going and generous but naive personality. I now feel this lad is taking advantage of my son’s nature and I am very worried he is now pressing my son for money as well as food and trying to monopolise my son’s time when he is back at the flat. My son’s autism means he is very reluctant to say No or be firm with anyone as he has no wish to fall out with him or to create a bad atmosphere, but I feel things have now gone too far and this lad needs to have firm boundaries put in place.

    I expected my son to have trouble adjusting to some aspects of Uni life and he is adjusting very well and enjoying the start of his course, apart from what is going on back at the flat. I don’t want my son to get to the point where he can’t take it anymore and wants to return home for example, as with support he is doing very well.
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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    You're doing the right thing - the university needs to be made aware and take some action.
    Thank you for taking the time to reply. I will wait to see what the outcome of my son talking to the student support advisors is, and go from there if nothing changes, Thanks again.
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    (Original post by Bernadette04)
    Hi

    I would really like some advice from people on the situation my son is finding himself in at Uni, and as a parent what I should or shouldn’t be doing.

    My son is autistic and is in a flat with 3 others who have some kind of learning difficulty. My son and 2 of the other lads get on fantastically but they have an issue with one lad.

    Basically this lad seems to have a multitude of problems, is unidiagnosed with any disability therefore he receives no formal support at Uni, his parents have literally sent him to the Uni which is 6 hours away from them (pleased to get rid of him maybe??) and he is causing a lot of hassle for the others in the flat.

    He plays computer games until 4 or 5 am and constantly screams at the screen waking everybody up..the 3 other lads have had 2 flat meetings so far gently asking him to refrain. He does for 1night then starts up again. One lad has now been to the accomodation officer and is moving out to another hall as a result of this behaviour. So that leaves my son and one other lad to deal with the lad causing the problems.

    He leaves all his washing up to the point there’s is no place for the others to cook so my son has angrily done the washing up for him, Simply to have somewhere to cook his own meals. I have told him he mustn’t do this again as the lad will take advantage of this.

    Today the straw that has broken the camels back is that the lad is down to his last few hundred quid after spending ££££££S on computer games. He never leaves the flat apart from lectures despite the others offering to all go out together. As soon as my son comes back to the flat he literally wants to stay with my son for hours on end which is now becoming tiresome for him. He is now taking my son’s food from the kitchen and “borrowed a few slices of bread”which he needed but took a whole loaf. He has taken whole packets of ham and other items as well, despite my son telling him not to. Well today, now he is down to a few hundred quid to last until January he says that as my son receives extra help from DSA and student funding my son should “lend”him money to live on as apparently my son “can afford it”.

    I have given my son firm advice that this is now not on and he should contact the Disability Officer and student support for help. The lad who is moving out today could take no more of the situation so has moved to another hall, but my son likes his flat and room and I don’t see why he should move out to let this other lad off the hook.

    I have told my son that he should exhaust all avenues by talking with support officers and if he doesn’t get anywhere with it then I will step in as a last resort.

    Do you think this is right? Any advice would be gratefully received. My son is 18 and of course I should stand back as a parent and let him sort it out, but my son is now dreading returning to the flat everyday and with his autism he has enough to cope with as a fresher getting to know the Uni, lectures etc without this worry on top.
    This 'lad' is clearly not ready for university. His behaviour towards your son suggests that he clearly has no understanding of social boundaries or personal space. His inability to manage his money and his computer game addiction show that he cannot function independently as an adult. I'd suggest that your son (and others) get in touch with Student Welfare. The guy needs to drop out of uni and learn some basic life and social skills because right now this whole situation is heading for catastrophe.
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    (Original post by jambojim97)
    This 'lad' is clearly not ready for university. His behaviour towards your son suggests that he clearly has no understanding of social boundaries or personal space. His inability to manage his money and his computer game addiction show that he cannot function independently as an adult. I'd suggest that your son (and others) get in touch with Student Welfare. The guy needs to drop out of uni and learn some basic life and social skills because right now this whole situation is heading for catastrophe.

    Thank you for taking the time to reply. I totally agree with everything you have said. My son and the others all receive support for their disabilities through DSA in the form of special mentors etc but this lad has no formal diagnosis but has seemed to have slipped through the net, despite having a multitude of ongoing issues himself. I am aghast that the parents have simply left him at a Uni so far away from home with no support or input, but I am guessing that perhaps they don’t want to deal with his issues themselves. I was a little surprised that the Uni put them altogether in one flat, and think it would have worked out better if they had mixed the flatmates up with non disabled students too.

    I feel my son is being dragged under trying to support this other student, when my son has enough to deal with himself, but you’re right and I hope when I phone my son tonight, Student Support will have reached a decisin that will benefit them all.
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    (Original post by Bernadette04)
    Thank you for taking the time to reply. I totally agree with everything you have said. My son and the others all receive support for their disabilities through DSA in the form of special mentors etc but this lad has no formal diagnosis but has seemed to have slipped through the net, despite having a multitude of ongoing issues himself. I am aghast that the parents have simply left him at a Uni so far away from home with no support or input, but I am guessing that perhaps they don’t want to deal with his issues themselves.
    If his parents are neglecting him, then it's a much bigger issue on the part of the university. Adult Social Services need to be involved, because he's a vulnerable adult whose parents are simply not supporting him at all.

    (Original post by Bernadette04)
    I was a little surprised that the Uni put them altogether in one flat, and think it would have worked out better if they had mixed the flatmates up with non disabled students too.
    Yes, that was a terrible move! People with learning difficulties are not all the 'same' - they have very difficult issues meaning personality clashes are more likely. In light of this, your son might want to forfeit his lovely room and move to another flat with 'normal' (for want of a better word) people. At least then he'll be around people who are sociable and be able to develop his social skills in order to fit in with the big wide world. I know from experiences (I have Aspergers) that being isolated from the wider community can have catastrophic consequences.

    (Original post by Bernadette04)
    I feel my son is being dragged under trying to support this other student, when my son has enough to deal with himself, but you’re right and I hope when I phone my son tonight, Student Support will have reached a decision that will benefit them all.
    It's not his responsibility. I've often felt compelled to help people, but ultimately it's the responsibility of the university's disability service to take care of his welfare.

    Your son needs to get out of that flat ASAP. I know it will be difficult, because autistic people don't like change. But better to do it at this earlier stage because the longer it's left the worse it will be. At least now it's early enough in the year so that cliques haven't formed too strongly yet.
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    (Original post by jambojim97)
    If his parents are neglecting him, then it's a much bigger issue on the part of the university. Adult Social Services need to be involved, because he's a vulnerable adult whose parents are simply not supporting him at all.



    Yes, that was a terrible move! People with learning difficulties are not all the 'same' - they have very difficult issues meaning personality clashes are more likely. In light of this, your son might want to forfeit his lovely room and move to another flat with 'normal' (for want of a better word) people. At least then he'll be around people who are sociable and be able to develop his social skills in order to fit in with the big wide world. I know from experiences (I have Aspergers) that being isolated from the wider community can have catastrophic consequences.



    It's not his responsibility. I've often felt compelled to help people, but ultimately it's the responsibility of the university's disability service to take care of his welfare.

    Your son needs to get out of that flat ASAP. I know it will be difficult, because autistic people don't like change. But better to do it at this earlier stage because the longer it's left the worse it will be. At least now it's early enough in the year so that cliques haven't formed too strongly yet.


    Thanks for all your good advice today. I think the situation is worse because the lad involved has no formal diagnosis of a disability..just that he suffers from severe depression. Hence SFE do not provide any formal DSA support as he has slipped the net so to speak. Whereas my son and the others have formal diagnosis and support mentors put in place for Uni from their schools reports and Student Finance help. As soon as I hear back from my son tonight on how his talks went today with student support I will know what is best to do next. Thanks again for your help.
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    Can your son and the others keep a diary and then take it to the accommodation people / disability support?
 
 
 
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