Housing and independent living
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My Autistic son wants to live independently

Hi my name is Helen. I'm very new to asking for advice so please forgive the dozens of questions I'm going to be asking throughout this site


  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,729 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi Helen, it's a little quiet today but I am sure there will be lots of people about soon.
    Senior online community officer
  • Helsbels41Helsbels41 Member Posts: 17 Connected
    Thank you. I don't sleep much so tend to be about a stupid o'clock most mornings so I'm used to it x
  • Blue FrogBlue Frog Member Posts: 373 Pioneering
    edited January 2017
    Hi @Helsbels41 My brother has autism, he lived in a group house with other people (and fell out with everyone) so he now has a flat of his own with support workers via Direct Payments. He is a lot happier and has been there 5 years with no major problems
  • Helsbels41Helsbels41 Member Posts: 17 Connected
    That's really really great to hear. Thank you for sharing that with me x
  • Blue FrogBlue Frog Member Posts: 373 Pioneering
    He had some help from an OT - there was some sort of independent living team at social services who helped him for the first few weeks.  They assessed what he could do and showed him tasks like using the washing machine.  

    We made loads of lists, and signs for round the flat - things like a step by step guide on the door to remind him what he needs to check before leaving.  We also bought a label machine for things like electrical plugs, which setting to put washing machine/oven on.

    There is a panic alarm he can press in an emergency.  

    He has an iPad which is fantastic for FaceTime. If he has a problem he sends a photo or FaceTimes us to show us what is wrong, and we can talk him through it.  This was worth its weight in gold the day he rang to say the flat was on fire, and please could we ring British Gas?!! FaceTime showed us he was making cheese on toast and a tiny bit of cheese was smoking - though to this day I have no idea what Bristish Gas were meant to do, he lives in towerblock with no gas supply  :D

  • Debbie_ScopeDebbie_Scope Member Posts: 947 Pioneering
    Hi @Helsbels41,

    Have you tried contacting your local council to see if they have an independent living team to help your son pursue this? 

    How old is your son and what area do you currently live in? I can look up some information to help you move forward.

    Loved @Blue Frog's advice, that was a really good outcome for your brother and lots of really good tips there. I loved the facetime tip too!

    Best wishes
  • Helsbels41Helsbels41 Member Posts: 17 Connected
    Hi Debbie. I seem to hit a brick wall with my local council. My son is going to be 20 at the end of january and we live in Stafford Staffordshire. Thank you for your advice x
  • Debbie_ScopeDebbie_Scope Member Posts: 947 Pioneering
    Hi Helsbels41,

    I wonder if @Mickey might have some local advice he can offer?

    I will have a look to see what's available in your area but hopefully Mickey will have some ideas too.

    Look forward to catch up with you soon. :)
  • CIMTukCIMTuk Member Posts: 12 Connected
    Hi @Helsbels41 I work with OTs and Educational Psychologists. They are able to do a 'life skills' assessment. This is an assessment to look at what challenges a person may face when attempting to live independently. If he has not tried living on his own yet then it is important to make sure that he is supported during the initial transition. The worry is that if adequate support is not in place then the independent living will fail and that will result in reduced confidence. it might be a good idea for him to try one night away from home, increased to a weekend, then a week. This could be done in an apartment hotel. Often these shorter stays will give you both an idea of what provision needs to be in place for independent living. 
  • bubblybubbly Scope Volunteer Posts: 26 Connected
    I've supported lots of people with autism to live independently. Have you tried getting in touch with your local authority? It sometimes helps to have an idea of the kind of support you think your son will need-full time or only occasional if poss and maybe think of the kind of setting-shared of on his own.
  • kimberlywalshkimberlywalsh Member Posts: 11 Listener
    This mind sound stupid, but who would be my local authority in trying to find the right help for my 29 year old son, who has Aspergers Syndrome!  Desparately seeking help, as stress at home now at its highest level!!
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