Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival => Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board => Topic started by: Twoapenny on November 14, 2018, 09:02:25 AM

Title: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 14, 2018, 09:02:25 AM
I am aware I'm asking for more than I'm giving at the minute, and I'm sorry for that, but something has happened to put me in a whirlwind and as you are more experienced parents I wanted to write it up and get your thoughts and feelings on it.

As you know, son has learning disabilities as well as autism and various physical health problems.  You also all know the battles I've been through over the years on his behalf and that we've moved to get him better support and that I'm currently battling again to get the support he needs put in place.

A few weeks ago, I found porn on his laptop.  I had heard 'porn' noises coming from his bedroom the night before and looked on his laptop the next day, when he was at college.  I had put parental blocks on but - I later discovered - I had put them on the browser, not with the internet provider, so he was simply using a different browser.

I was in a bit of a spin about it - he's 16 so physically like any other 16 year old, but with the mental age of a much younger child - around 8 or so.  I don't want him watching porn, but I didn't want to freak him out and make a big thing of it either.

I couldn't find much of any use on the internet so I made my own worksheets and over the next few days we talked and worked through these sheets about porn not being a good way to learn about sex, how some people in porn aren't enjoying themselves and get hurt, how it's best to learn about sex through a relationship with someone that you care about and so on.  We've done quite a lot of work over his teenage years about sex, puberty, masturbation, relationships and so on.  He kept saying he understood, he wouldn't do it again and so on.  I thought it had made sense and it had got through to him but then I found out he'd been using my phone to access porn, because he could no longer get to it on his laptop.

We had another talk about porn, and sex, and about people's private possessions and how he shouldn't use my phone without asking and shouldn't use it for things like that, ever.  Again, there was lots of nodding and he understood and he wouldn't do it again.

Another week goes by and I find that he's been finding things on YouTube.  It's seems it's quite easy for x rated stuff to get past parental blocks if they're not on YouTube itself (another tech fact I didn't know) so again, I blocked x rated stuff on YouTube and again we had a talk about porn and so on.

Yesterday I was changing his bedding and there were brown stains which I assume were from semen.  It shouldn't be brown so I asked him about it and if he was having any pain and he said he was a bit, but then refused to talk about it anymore.  I only bring that up because when it comes to sex and young people, my feeling is if you're old enough to have sex, then you also need to be able to look after your genitals, protect yourself from STIs and deal with all the boring but necessary stuff that goes alongside the actual sex itself.  Cue half an hour of me looking up brown semen problems on the internet and trying to work out what to do next.

Early hours of this morning he woke me up; the top stairs creak badly so you can't get up or down stairs without someone hearing.  It was 1.30am.  After his bath in the evening he's allowed five more minutes on his device.  Then it goes away.  This is a recent thing I've done with him, part of him being a bit older, having a bit more responsibility for himself and so on.  I'd asked him when he'd gone to bed where his IPAD was and he said it was in the bag and he'd put it away.  When he woke me up, I knew there was only one thing he'd have gone downstairs for, and when I looked, his IPAD was charging on the downstairs table and his battery was completely out - which could only mean he'd been playing on it through the night when he should have been asleep.

I couldn't get back to sleep after that and he came downstairs looking absolutely shattered.  Bearing in mind he has chronic fatigue so tiredness is a huge issue for him - playing computer games until the early hours is not an option and he knows this.  I told him I knew he'd been playing on his IPAD and he denied it.  I pointed out that he'd woken me up when he went to plug it in and that I saw the battery was flat and at that point he admitted he'd been doing it.  I've told him now that when he goes in the bath each night all his devices will be going in a box under my bed and we will go back to our old no electronics in the bedroom in the evening rule.

Then I went to check his laptop and sure enough he's been searching for porn again.  He hasn't been able to get on to any - I seem to have cracked all the blocking options now - but when I asked him about it he lied to me to my face and denied looking for anything.  I told him I'd checked his history and read out the names of some of the things he'd searched and his face fell.  He admitted it then and then got very upset.

I hate seeing him upset and I told him that I love him and always will, but I also told him that I'm furious that he's lied to me about this and that he's still trying to access porn despite the multiple talks we've had about it.  I've also told him how angry I am that he lied about putting his IPAD away and that he's played it despite knowing he's not supposed to and it should have been switched off, and that he woke me up and deprived himself of sleep as well.

It has bothered me hugely.  I love him dearly and nothing will ever change that but today I am feeling that he has a complete lack of respect for me.  He's lied so often and so easily and obviously just agrees with things I say to stop me talking quickly.  I've been looking at his history and it seems he's been going on to these sites for months and some of them are vile.  I've told him that some stuff is illegal and if he looks at it the police might get involved - which can happen - and that really scared him.  I didn't tell him it to frighten him, but the truth is there's some awful stuff out there and if he gets caught up in that then everything will be out of my hands.

I feel like everything I've done, all the work, all the fighting, all the years protecting him from my family and possible predators, has all culminated in him being someone who can lie to me easily and repeatedly, many times.  That feels like a big kick in the teeth.  I don't expect him to be perfect or never make a mistake and I don't expect him never to be interested in sex or anything like that.  The opposite is true; I've tried to get him to go along to more social type activities to meet other people his own age but he's never interested in doing it.  I wonder now what else he's lied about and whether there are other things he's doing that I don't know about.  If I mention other people looking after him he doesn't like it - but there's no way I'm giving up my time and energy so that he can sit upstairs watching porn and playing bloody computer games.

In all honesty I feel like putting him in a care home straight away.  I wouldn't do that - partly because the system doesn't work like that, but also I realise I'm angry and will probably feel better when I've calmed down.  But I just keep thinking that, without him, I could be going out to work, seeing friends, taking up new hobbies, living in a nice little flat by the sea - it would be a very different life.  I don't resent what I've done for him and I haven't made sacrifices so that I can hold them over him and make him feel guilty any time he displeases me - but equally I haven't given it all up so that he can live an online life with no attachment to reality.

So - phew.  Thank you for letting me spill.  Perhaps this is the sign that I have to start thinking about myself and putting myself first, at least some of the time, and he will just have to cope with being uncomfortable and things not always being the way he needs them all the time.  It feels wrong to say it, but equally I feel quite horrified by the lying and how easily he's been able to do all this without me knowing.  I thought we had a more open and honest connection than we do and it has taken the wind out of my sails a bit.  I will sign off now - I'm going to walk back into town, I think the air will do me good.

On a better note, we are getting our car on Friday which will take the pressure off a bit.  Although at the minute I feel like just walking away and never coming back, if I'm honest.  Thank you for reading xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 14, 2018, 10:13:11 AM
I can so relate to many layers of this Tupp. Particularly the pain of being lied to.
I can't write long at this second, but in brief:

The rational discussions you're having about his behavior are connecting...with his rational brain. For many a young man, internet and video games and devices are ALREADY literally addicting. Add sex hormones and some young men find they are as driven to find more of it as any addict is driven to find any substance.

Being lied to is devastating. But it may be an addict lie. No more justifiable than any other lying, except that if it's in service of a compulsion he's developed (sounds like he has), it's harder to stop.

It sounds as though what's hurting you most is seeing it as a sign of flawed character. I understand this. I went through the same hurt and loss of trust with my D. She was a legendary liar.

But I think about a special young man who maybe doesn't expect to develop easier relationships with real girls his age, as he's grown used to a fair amount of isolation or self consciousness about his condition...and maybe this particular compulsion once the damn porn merchants got to his brain is nearly uncontrollable -- and I do feel sympathy for you both.

I hope your T can help with the pain you're feeling. And perhaps he needs his own individual counselor to cope with some of the things he's going through.

Big hugs
Hops

Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 14, 2018, 11:22:29 AM
I can so relate to many layers of this Tupp. Particularly the pain of being lied to.
I can't write long at this second, but in brief:

The rational discussions you're having about his behavior are connecting...with his rational brain. For many a young man, internet and video games and devices are ALREADY literally addicting. Add sex hormones and some young men find they are as driven to find more of it as any addict is driven to find any substance.

Being lied to is devastating. But it may be an addict lie. No more justifiable than any other lying, except that if it's in service of a compulsion he's developed (sounds like he has), it's harder to stop.

It sounds as though what's hurting you most is seeing it as a sign of flawed character. I understand this. I went through the same hurt and loss of trust with my D. She was a legendary liar.

But I think about a special young man who maybe doesn't expect to develop easier relationships with real girls his age, as he's grown used to a fair amount of isolation or self consciousness about his condition...and maybe this particular compulsion once the damn porn merchants got to his brain is nearly uncontrollable -- and I do feel sympathy for you both.

I hope your T can help with the pain you're feeling. And perhaps he needs his own individual counselor to cope with some of the things he's going through.

Big hugs
Hops

Thanks, Hops.  I have suggested a counsellor to him but he's refused.  I was thinking earlier, though, that I might just go back to 'do as you're told' parenting.  It's such a grey area when his intellectual and emotional age are so different to his actual and physical age.  And yes, absolutely an addict's lie and a compulsion there, I recognise it from my own addiction issues.  Both his dad and myself are former addicts so I guess I should count my blessings that his addiction is internet based and therefore easier to control than crack or something similar (by control I mean I can control what he sees on the internet, not that it's easier for him to control).

I've just picked him up from college and when we got home I've told him plainly; if he ever watches or looks for porn or lies to me again about using a device I will take all devices away and that will be that.  He won't have them again, he can go back to DVDs and books.  I have let his tech obsession go on because I thought/hoped that one day he'd be able to make a living at it or at least have a useful hobby, rebuilding old laptops or something like that.  But now I am thinking perhaps I need to go back to the way we were when he was little; his screen time was very restricted and most of what he did was practical and outdoors.  He hates that sort of thing now but it's got me thinking that this has shown he doesn't make healthy decisions when left to his own devices so perhaps I should go back to just telling him what to do and restrict his choices again.  I feel like we get to the top of one mountain, only to have to immediately start to climb the next one.  So tired of it all.

Thank you for listening, you are a good friend xx xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: lighter on November 14, 2018, 11:47:52 AM
Yes, I agree with Hops about T for Son, Tupp.

You're the mom, and you've done an amazing job educating your son about sex.  Now, if there's compulsive/addicted behavior involved, maybe a professional will help AND help son transition into adulthood in general.

My 16 yo DD has been dishonest recently, and then sallied forth with more intricate Fabrications in the face of getting caught.  It is a demoralizing punch in the gut.  I had to step away, and find my center before reacting, bc I felt the anger at being treated that way too.  I had flash backs to hard fought, costly battles and wondered if I'd wasted my time putting everything I was and am into those battles for my children too.

It's normal to feel that way, if we're being honest imo.  It's also normal to have that anger, accept it, feel entitled to it, then re enter the situation with fresh eyes, as you're doing.  As I'm trying to do. 

We ask ourselves if we need to course correct?  If so, how.? I try to remember NOT to make the mistakes my parents made...... I don't yell, name call or shame the girls. 

Natural consequences have to be the teacher at some point.  We can feel empathy for our children at that point, but we shouldn't save them from those lessons.  Maybe a T can explain consequences better than you can?  Maybe hearing true stories will have more impact, regarding porn, and addiction?

I have the feeling that my kids should be doing more service work/part time jobs, so they're more productive with less time to waste on games/computers.  Youngest DD is seeking opportunities now.

Maybe your T will help guide your choices going forward?  I don't want to be the sap parent, but neither do I want to go to war.  I want to be calm, and consistent with boundaries that make sense.  I want my adult children to focus on their good or bad choices, and not on ME as cause for unhappy consequences.

They choose.  They live with the consequences, and I'm able to feel bad about those consequences with them.  I try not to get angry.  I try to sit with the anger, withdraw with love while they wait for my response, which gives them time to reflect. 

The conversation that follows often involves them saying what I was thinking....they understand, they see my point, they have suggestions about consequences.

Your son is growing up.  He is a young man.  He's going to be sexual.  I don't know what that should look like, but you're very open, and proactive.  What choices do you have?  What makes sense?

Vile porn isn't acceptable, so what is?  Is son meeting girls at school?  In programs?  Is he moving toward more autonomy? 

I know you should cultivate a life for yourself, and that you're trying.  This is cause for relief, and self exploration.  This isn't a crisis, imo.  It's time to ask for help, maybe your own T can see son with you and on his own.

What will life look like in 5 years?  10 years?  How can you help your son engage his world, and not get stuck on the computer most of the time?  I don't know if his health will allow employment, but you have time to think about it.

It's natural for teens to reach beyond us, and transfer trust and social lives to their peers.  I wish I didn't feel so flat footed during transitions, but I usually do. 

Lord, here comes some big transitions, Tupp.  We aren't going to do it perfectly, but we'll do what we've always done.  Our best.  Part of our best is modeling healthy adult relationship, boundaries, and self care.  We stop doing what our kids can do for themselves, if we're still doing it, and we support their entry into adulthood.

I struggle with health issues for my oldest, and have to force myself to let it go.  It's so hard, but she bucks hard if I don't, and she wants that responsibility.  I have to find a way to make peace, over and over.  Anxiety builds, I remember how to recover, and the process starts over with me internalizing a bit more each time.  I try to notice escalation, but life gets busy, and old patterns pop up, slip in, repeat despite best efforts, and that's ok

We keep loving our kids, even when we're deeply disappointed, and feeling betrayed.  We learn how to not take it personally, keep boundaries in place to guide us, and enforce with calm consistent empathy, so we aren't the focus.  Our children's choices are the focus.

That's a long unedited ramble, but tapping with one thumb again.  I hope it's helpful, a bit, as is, ((Tupp.))

Lighter
PS I've had luck with T saying things to the girls, that I couldn't get through to them.





Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 14, 2018, 02:48:36 PM
Lighter, you are the master one thumb tapper!  I don't know how you manage to write that much like that, I'd give up after a couple of sentences :)  Lol.  And it was all helpful, thank you.

I am feeling calmer now, I've had a bath and oddly, since telling him he's not to look at anything like that and I will take his devices away if he does, he seems calmer as well.  I'm wondering if I made a mistake by relaxing his boundaries a bit.  I'm going to try putting them back up and see what happens.

I'm going to speak to college once all this court business is sorted out and ask them if they can organise something with one of the male staff.  I know when we looked around we peeked into a session that was three lads and one male teacher and they were working on physical space (when around girls) and consent, so I think it's the sort of thing they would be able to tackle.  The problem with finding a counsellor is that son's verbal skills are so limited they would need a learning disability background to be able to work with him and people like that are very rare.  But I think college would be able to help.

I'm sorry that your D has been dishonest, Lighter, it does feel like the wind has been taken out of your sails a bit, doesn't it?  I think it bothered me that he felt the need to lie - I'm open minded and I've always been very frank with him, and I've often told him if he wants to talk to someone other than me I can arrange it.  At the moment I feel like I don't know him; it's like there's some bloke staying in my house and I'm not sure who he is.  It's unsettling.

He is around girls at college but he doesn't really interact with them or anyone else.  His communication skills are poor and he's anxious around people.  I think what I'm going to have to do is find as many activities as possible with other learning disabled kids so that he's out more, around other people more and just doesn't have the free time for tech.  I think I might also go back to our old 'one hour of screen time a day' rule.  I relaxed it when he got older but perhaps he isn't ready.  I'm going to give him more jobs to do around the house as well.  I think your idea for the girls to get work is good, Lighter.  Son can't work but he can do chores and help me out with things.  I think perhaps I should look into volunteering somewhere that he would like, like a Cat Rescue place.  Perhaps busy and active and away from the computer is the best way to deal with it, and telling him what he's doing instead of letting him spend hours on a screen.  It's worth a try, I think.

You are very good friends to me.  I'm so lucky to have you.  I wouldn't have known where else to take this but here you all are, open, non-judgemental, honest.  I'm very lucky indeed xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 14, 2018, 04:59:49 PM
https://www.webmd.com/men/guide/blood-in-semen-hematospermia-causes-symptoms-tests-treatments#1

Hope this helps....

Big hugs,
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 15, 2018, 01:01:41 AM
https://www.webmd.com/men/guide/blood-in-semen-hematospermia-causes-symptoms-tests-treatments#1

Hope this helps....

Big hugs,
Hops

Hops, that is helpful, thank you :)  I had previously thought that I would go to the doctor first, have a conversation, find out what (if anything) to do next and then work through with son.  He hates doctors, hates talking about his health, gets very embarrassed about his genitals, puberty and so on.  So originally I thought it best for me to sort things out and then get him to do anything necessary.  After yesterday, however, I'm more inclined to think that if he thinks he's old enough to watch that sort of thing he can blooming well overcome his embarrassment and start learning about looking after himself properly and having to deal with reality.  So we will book the appointment, I will have to go with him because his verbal skills aren't good enough for him to explain on his own - plus I know I can't trust him to tell the truth now.

He hasn't done much around the house for a long time as he was so ill for so long and similarly, with him starting college I was worried that he'd get ill again if he over did it.  So I've been letting him rest up while I've run around like a blue bummed fly.  As of today we are going back to son doing as much as humanly possible.  In a way it creates work for me; it's quicker and easier for me to do things myself.  But he obviously needs more to occupy his time so we'll be getting on with that now.

Thank you for listening all of you, I can't tell you how much it means to me xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 16, 2018, 06:06:48 AM
Thank you all for listening and for giving me that space :)  Things have calmed down a little.  I don't think son is entirely sure what he's done wrong.  He has virtually no understanding of concepts so I'm starting to see how he possibly isn't differentiating between sex he is allowed to watch (for example, we saw a film at the cinema recently where two people were having sex - it was a comedy and the sex is hinted at rather than being obvious but they were having sex none the less) and sex he isn't allowed to watch, like porn.  They're boundaries that grown adults would argue over so it is a difficult area to get in to and it's just an aspect of adult life that I really hadn't realised he was at yet so I have not been preparing for this at all.

That said, he has lied to me more than once, which he knows he shouldn't, and he has been hiding what he's doing from me, so on some level he knew it was wrong.  Counsellor pointed out that teenagers push boundaries, do things they shouldn't, want to break away from parents, lie, deceive, think they know better than their fuddy duddy parents and so on - all of which is true.  I suppose I just hadn't realised that he was at that point now.  I thought it was still more about him wanting to watch crappy television that I don't like.  He has grown up in other ways quicker than I realised.  So it's all been a bit of a shock.

Anyway - the new rule is that he takes a bath at 8pm and his devices go in to a drawer under my bed at that time and they stay there until the next day.  I have definitely slept better the last two nights that we've done that and he looks more rested as well so I'm wondering how many nights he stayed up playing computer games and I didn't know.

I'm also making him do his share of the chores now.  He sorted out his own meds and vitamin supplements both today and yesterday and made his own packed lunch.  He put laundry in the machine to wash and put clean laundry away.  Yesterday he helped me put the bins out as well, plus I've made him open his curtains and crack the windows a little once he's got dressed.  It takes longer for him to do it as he can't do any of it alone, I have to stand with him and talk him through the process, which is why we haven't been doing it in the mornings as getting out the door on time is tricky without the extra work.  But it means he's been busy from getting up to leaving and has had no time to go online.  Interestingly, he got up later this morning as well - whether the lack of IT means he's less keen to get up or whether he slept a bit later I'm not sure but I am intending to keep him busier indoors with the boring day to day stuff now.

I am going to do a bit of research on porn addiction.  It's not a topic I'm looking forward to learning more about but I am aware that the only reason he's stopped doing it is because he can't get online at home now.  That won't have actually sorted out the problem so I will need to look into that a bit more and see what else I can do.  I've also decided I am going to take him to the doctor about this brown semen issue.  From what I've read online it's unlikely to be a sign of a serious problem but he does need to start learning more about his body and his health and what sort of things he should telling someone about if he notices them.   He will hate it, he hates things like that, but it's necessary so we're going to do that at some point.

The good news is that he did work experience in the college cafe yesterday and he loved it.  The cafe is run entirely by the learning disabled students and is open to the public (imagine if I could get my lovely American friends and our Doctor G over for tea and cakes :)  Bonesie, there's a cat rescue centre alongside it with lovely cats that need cuddles!  Tea, cake and kitty cuddles - perfect afternoon :) )  He had to wear proper chef's whites and follow health and safety procedures and he made butternut squash soup, chocolate chip cookies and a ginger cake, with proper stem ginger, not powdered (he informed me :)).

I think it's really highlighted to me that I'm not prepared or willing to care for a learning disabled adult male.  I feel I've done the best job I can until now but a lifetime of looking after someone with learning difficulties is too much for me.  It feels like this really highlighted the difference between a learning disabled child and a learning disabled adult.  But we're okay, I think it was a bit of a shock for both of us.  Hopefully we will both learn from it.
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 16, 2018, 07:15:46 AM
(((((Tupp)))))

The cafe sounds wonderful! Coffee then kitties!

You're taking every right possible step, I think.

And hormones and lies and all, he's STILL the remarkable, sweet and good-enough young man you've raised with cannonballs chained to your ankles, crawling up a mountain with Bengal tigers licking your ankles every step of the way.

I am glad you won't try to take care of him FT for the rest of your adult life. You've done SUCH good work and such good prep with so few resources. If there's a group home setting where he could live with great outings and visits with you, that sounds like a solution to me.

Only thing would be to find parents of other similar young people and ferret out how you can find the best one available to you, with positive carers and such. And they do exist! I remember how often on Britain's Got Talent I'd see some young person who worked in that kind of setting and clearly loved their work and their charges.

Your son might flower with that increased independence and support. NOBODY should expect a single mother in your circumstances, with no family support, to do this kind of 24/7 forever. It's impossible, and you've been doing a heroic job of the impossible for a very long time.

love
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 16, 2018, 07:48:45 AM
(((((Tupp)))))

The cafe sounds wonderful! Coffee then kitties!

You're taking every right possible step, I think.

And hormones and lies and all, he's STILL the remarkable, sweet and good-enough young man you've raised with cannonballs chained to your ankles, crawling up a mountain with Bengal tigers licking your ankles every step of the way.

I am glad you won't try to take care of him FT for the rest of your adult life. You've done SUCH good work and such good prep with so few resources. If there's a group home setting where he could live with great outings and visits with you, that sounds like a solution to me.

Only thing would be to find parents of other similar young people and ferret out how you can find the best one available to you, with positive carers and such. And they do exist! I remember how often on Britain's Got Talent I'd see some young person who worked in that kind of setting and clearly loved their work and their charges.

Your son might flower with that increased independence and support. NOBODY should expect a single mother in your circumstances, with no family support, to do this kind of 24/7 forever. It's impossible, and you've been doing a heroic job of the impossible for a very long time.

love
Hops

Thank you, Hops xx  There are good care settings around here, this part of the UK is quite focused on the environment, ecology, renewable energy and so on and as such there is more of a focus on community and everyone being a part of that.  So there are good care settings around, whether residential homes, supported accommodation, house shares and so on.  Quite a lot of them are attached to businesses that are run by the residents.  There's a cafe set up fairly nearby, similar to the one they run at college, as well as a community garden that's run by learning disabled residents and an art therapy/recycling type place that I need to check out.  There are options out there, I think I get so overwhelmed by the day to day battles that trying to think further on becomes difficult.  But it will be okay, this is probably my first major 'oh my god' moment with son; I know my friend's kids started horrifying them much sooner :)  Lol.  And yes, I think he will flourish with support from others.  The cafe example is a good one; he'd never have made all that food with me.  He used to do it when he was little, but now it's a struggle to get him to heat a tin of beans.  But because he was somewhere different with other people he loved it and was keen to show off.  He apparently demonstrated how you're supposed to wash your hands and treated them all to some impressions during the tea break :)  Lol, so yes, it's okay, I think in my head I'd hoped his IT obsession would lead to him writing an app that would make him a fortune rather than him doing things that could get him arrested :)

Thank you for all of the help and support, I really appreciate it xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: sKePTiKal on November 16, 2018, 07:56:51 AM
Hey Tupp... I had girls; so the issues were different. But I have 2 teen grandsons. The porn thing - curiosity, exploring sex & sexual feelings - is really quite normal at that age. Remember the kids who hid playboy magazines under the bed? LOL.

Your situation is complicated by the fact that son doesn't understand the boundaries - but the danger that he is truly addicted, may be less than you think. IMO, my mom instinct says the boundary confusion is even more reason he shouldn't be watching it.  At least, until you've been able to enlist the help of the male instructors at school, who are aware of the extra issues. (Which is the least embarrassing avenue for son, I think.)

Honestly, it's always a shock for parents when they discover their kids' interest in this area of adult life.
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 16, 2018, 01:49:11 PM
Hey Tupp... I had girls; so the issues were different. But I have 2 teen grandsons. The porn thing - curiosity, exploring sex & sexual feelings - is really quite normal at that age. Remember the kids who hid playboy magazines under the bed? LOL.

Your situation is complicated by the fact that son doesn't understand the boundaries - but the danger that he is truly addicted, may be less than you think. IMO, my mom instinct says the boundary confusion is even more reason he shouldn't be watching it.  At least, until you've been able to enlist the help of the male instructors at school, who are aware of the extra issues. (Which is the least embarrassing avenue for son, I think.)

Honestly, it's always a shock for parents when they discover their kids' interest in this area of adult life.

Thanks Skep, you are right, I think the shock of it all was just a bit much!  I think it's also what's available now on the internet is just so scary and so easy for him to see (as I've found to my peril!).  And the boundary issue is a problem because he isn't getting the 'real life' experiences to learn through alongside anything he's watching.  I do think some 'man talk' at college will help.  I did ask him today if he understood why I had told him he wasn't allowed to watch it and the bit he's taken from it is that he might do something that will make the police arrest him.  The long talks we'd had about different kinds of sex and issues of consent and so on have gone right over his head.  But at least he isn't watching it now and we just collected our new car!  So it will be easier to get out and about more and naturally reduce screen time.

And I have seen you've updated your thread.  I still haven't caught up!  Lol, I am going to get on the case in the morning :) xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: lighter on November 16, 2018, 08:05:08 PM
You're a giant, Tupp.  You've jumped in, managed son's computer time, and put busy routines in place like a pro.

Amazing!

Allowing son to grow up is important.  Man talk at college regarding sex/porn/consent/why deviant and illegal porn isn't an option seems necessary.  Perhaps son can join you with your T now and again, or not.

Modeling self care is priority, ime.  This is huge transition time for you, and son.  Be kind to yourself.  Know son is in a safe place, poised for adult phase of life.  You've raised a young man, and both your lives will change.

Relief is a good word.  You've earned a huge helping of it, ((Tupp.))

Lighter
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 16, 2018, 11:41:20 PM
I am a complete old-school feminist prude about porn.
I loathe it.
I believe it dehumanizes everyone participating. Males too. And it's getting more debasing.
Not at all a model for happy lovemaking or relationships...
I believe most women in porn (like Stormy) come from backgrounds of abuse and dysfunction.
I believe it's a desperate and demeaning way to earn a living, despite its "sex-positive" proponents.

I've seen some. But I right away started thinking about the PEOPLE, not just what they were doing, and it kind of broke my heart. I get and can get into (if I turn empathy off) the titillation. Just rather not...but I'm old.

I hate it. I think it's wrecking a generation -- or at least made their futures so much bleaker -- and imo, it is very very far from Playboy now. Same hormones but now it's like they're getting crack instead of chewing gum.

Rantily,
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: sKePTiKal on November 17, 2018, 09:08:50 AM
Sex just isn't a spectator sport, IMO. Like baseball, it's a lot more fun to play than to watch. And I think sex without (at least) respect & affection... becomes something negative and counter-productive.

Tupps, maybe something to explore with son - is that idea of expressing affection. And use concrete examples, like a hug... and how that is appropriate expression unless a person really doesn't want it... a "giving"... instead of a "getting" or "taking". How porn always seems to be "selfish", in a way... and has very very little to do with sharing affection.

Maybe I'm barking up the wrong tree, but it seems there are way too many messages confusing physical satisfaction with love these days. That seems like a major loss for humanity... and it's easy to see how any kid could misunderstand.
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 17, 2018, 07:08:47 PM
Quote
it seems there are way too many messages confusing physical satisfaction with love these days. That seems like a major loss for humanity...

AMEN, and Amen.

xxoo
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 18, 2018, 03:54:18 AM
Thank you again, all of you, for your support, as always.

Things have calmed down a bit.  Son is on best behaviour, is far more pleasant to be around during the day, not as tired, not as grumpy and doing much less of the moody teenager thing.  Whether he is putting on an act or if it is the effect of less screen time, earlier nights and no porn, only time will tell, I think.

Porn is like much else of modern life, I think - endless television, social media, junk food, text talk instead of conversations and so on.  There is so much now that is artificial and yes, I do think real life experiences are so much richer and more meaningful, whatever the situation.  I don't want to come over all hellfire and brimstone on him but I do want him to understand that this is not real, and is not an accurate representation of real.

He's not having real life situations of any kind, and possibly never will.  He dislikes all forms of touch.  He won't hug and only holds my arm when walking because he needs the physical prop.  He can't hold a conversation; literally, it isn't something he's capable of.  He can answer relatively simple questions and will talk at length about things that interest him but has no interest in anything anyone else is saying.  Intellectually, about nine tenths of what most people say is white noise to him; he can follow clear, precise instructions but cannot keep up with or engage in a general conversation.  So there are these big barriers there which will not be dampening the probably colossal amounts of testosterone swirling around him and the physical urges and desires that are probably all encompassing at the moment.  We are going to have to get out more and socialise more, if only to ensure there's less time available for screens and wandering mind moments.  But it's tough, tough for him, tough for me and bizarrely, I've been trying to find learning disabled resources about this sort of thing and there's surprisingly little out there.  It seems the basics are covered but not much else.  I may have to dig a bit deeper or make up my own.  I will talk to college at some point in the future about it and see what they can suggest.

Anyway - in the meantime, I think the crisis is over for now.  Thank you all for listening and being there for me, as always xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 18, 2018, 10:04:27 AM
I couldn't resist a very quick search and also found virtually nothing about pornogrpahy compulsion among young males with ASD.

This review article might lead you to some info, dunno.
https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007%2F978-1-4614-4788-7_27 (https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007%2F978-1-4614-4788-7_27)

I guess because the hyper-availability of porn and the unfiltered internet and this generation's vulnerability to device addiction is relatively new in the culture, researchers haven't singled out this particular sexual behavior in studies yet. What a disappointment.

BUT...I do think a skilled and intelligent therapist could work with your son to help him feel good about himself and find healthier outlets. I hope so.

xxoo
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 18, 2018, 10:48:32 AM
I couldn't resist a very quick search and also found virtually nothing about pornogrpahy compulsion among young males with ASD.

This review article might lead you to some info, dunno.
https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007%2F978-1-4614-4788-7_27 (https://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007%2F978-1-4614-4788-7_27)

I guess because the hyper-availability of porn and the unfiltered internet and this generation's vulnerability to device addiction is relatively new in the culture, researchers haven't singled out this particular sexual behavior in studies yet. What a disappointment.

BUT...I do think a skilled and intelligent therapist could work with your son to help him feel good about himself and find healthier outlets. I hope so.

xxoo
Hops

Aw Hops, thank you for doing that, very kind of you.  I will read the article later on, thank you.  Yes, it seems a very overlooked topic.  Resources for general puberty/sex/consent type topics among the learning disabled seem better catered for (in the UK, at least), and we've got three books that I've found very useful - just clear, simple explanations and sensible advice with lists of rules (he loves rules!) about where you can get undressed, what to do if you get an erection in public and so on.  Just sensible and good to have written down so he can self refer (which he prefers to do rather than talking to me).  But most of what I found relating to porn and learning disabilities was in relation to them being abused or exploited, rather than ways of helping them understand what is wrong with it without making them have a nervous breakdown if they see a nipple.  So yes, an overlooked area and one I need to do some more work on.

I'm currently going through documents for the court hearing on Thursday and the sneaky local authority have been making changes without telling me.  Each version is around 260 pages long and it's dense reading - wordy, complex, tedious! And I am finding changes between the first and second edition and then again in the third edition that I haven't been informed about, that haven't been discussed or agreed upon and, of course, take support away from son rather than giving it to him.  Unlucky for them that I'm such a detail freak.  Lol xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 25, 2018, 09:43:24 AM
Just a little update; we seen to have got through the storm okay.  Son's devices are now put away at 8pm; he's sleeping better, behaviour's better and he just hasn't been so 'teenage'.  It may well be that he's putting on a best behaviour act but hopefully the reduced screen time is doing him some favours and I feel happier knowing he can't watch any more of that stuff (or not at home, anyway, but that is another problem to tackle in the future!).

Thank you all for listening and all of your support and advice, I appreciate it so much xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 25, 2018, 10:35:04 AM
I'm so glad to hear this, Tupp.
He couldn't control it himself and your device management
has helped him. No wonder he's becoming calmer and happier.

As to your trudge through the storms for him, and your decision
to have him live in what I suppose is the same as what we call
"group homes" for learning disabled in the U.S., that makes
perfect sense to me. You can pop in frequently to be sure all
is going okay and I imagine he'll settle into a satisfying sense
of belonging and community that he really will benefit from.

BRAVO, you. I'm so very sorry the system is so stupid. Unlike you.

love,
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 26, 2018, 02:43:56 AM
I'm so glad to hear this, Tupp.
He couldn't control it himself and your device management
has helped him. No wonder he's becoming calmer and happier.

As to your trudge through the storms for him, and your decision
to have him live in what I suppose is the same as what we call
"group homes" for learning disabled in the U.S., that makes
perfect sense to me. You can pop in frequently to be sure all
is going okay and I imagine he'll settle into a satisfying sense
of belonging and community that he really will benefit from.

BRAVO, you. I'm so very sorry the system is so stupid. Unlike you.

love,
Hops

Thanks, Hops. Yes, it will be some sort of group home set up, there's different things around.  He comes under lower level care needs; he doesn't need personal or nursing care, more just people around to help out with things, motivate him, keep him safe and so on.  It won't happen quickly but I've emailed the social worker about a meeting to discuss the way it all works and to start the ball rolling.

The system is horrific; I've tried my best to keep away from it because it really doesn't sit well with me - the attitude, the inefficiency, the closed minded, 'you will comply even though this is doing more harm than good' mentality makes me fear my own sanity.  But I think we're at the stage now where what's best for son is for me to be working, earning, healthy and happy so that I can (a) pay for as much privately as possible and (b) just keep myself alive for as long as possible.  I honestly feel like the stress is killing me and it has to stop.  Hopefully this week will be a bit quieter.  I still have mountains of paperwork to deal with but at least I'll be able to go for a walk on the beach each day while he's at college xx
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Hopalong on November 26, 2018, 09:52:00 PM
I understand.
The stress of caregiving CAN kill.

You are doing the right thing, for you both.

You've caught this in time.
You can recover and you will.

Breathe don't despair be gentle.

It's going to be okay.

love,
Hops
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 27, 2018, 01:17:19 PM
I understand.
The stress of caregiving CAN kill.

You are doing the right thing, for you both.

You've caught this in time.
You can recover and you will.

Breathe don't despair be gentle.

It's going to be okay.

love,
Hops

Thank you, Hops, your support and kindness mean a lot to me :)

Things have eased off a little bit now; I think what is really becoming clear is that just managing day to day is a monumental challenge; dealing with court cases and house moves and any other kind of additional stress is just too much.  And I find it very difficult to keep a healthy mindset when I'm tired and stressed.

I did do a bit of yoga this morning; I've laid off the coffee today and things are settling a bit.  There was (I thought) a medical issue brewing but it has turned out to be a bit of a miscommunication so it doesn't seem to be an issue now and I've emailed the social worker to request a meeting for after Christmas.  So we're getting there slowly and I'm just going to say no to anything stressful now and people will just have to wait :) x
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: lighter on November 28, 2018, 10:23:32 PM
Just a gentle reminder about my Aunt's nephew living in his adult care group home situation.  He goes home some weekends, but can't wait to get back to his job and friends.  It's a good thing, ((Tupp.))
Lighter
Title: Re: Need To Spill
Post by: Twoapenny on November 29, 2018, 03:28:59 AM
Just a gentle reminder about my Aunt's nephew living in his adult care group home situation.  He goes home some weekends, but can't wait to get back to his job and friends.  It's a good thing, ((Tupp.))
Lighter

Thanks Lighter, it is reassuring to hear of others enjoying those situations.  I have met people over the years for whom it works well and I know I will definitely be a lot healthier and function better if the bulk of the responsibility for looking after him is elsewhere and I can just take him out at the weekend and on little holidays.  I think it's important to get things in place now (it will take years to sort out anyway) so nothing will happen over night xx