What support can we get for our nephew with special needs? — Scope | Disability forum
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What support can we get for our nephew with special needs?

Andmount Member Posts: 6 Listener
Hello sadly my brothers wife passed away suddenly during Christmas period. My brother has a 17 year old son who has Special Needs and requires lots of help and support. He has little speech and virtually no understanding of things that go on.

I have only had the usual family sort of dealings with my brother snd his son but now and if Im completely honest need to be there for him much more and am looking at both practical help I can offer and much more importantly the time help I can give.

I am so looking forward to discussions and talking to people on this forum. 


  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,153 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Andmount

    Good afternoon & welcome!!!!!!

    Please Please let me know if I can help you in anyway???

    I have posted you some info below.

  • Andmount
    Andmount Member Posts: 6 Listener
    Hi Steve51, Thank you so much for your kind reply. Bit of a sad story and if Im honest its all new to me. I want to help and support my brother but no idea how or what is needed but am sure this will come to light as we move through. Currently I plan to spend 3 afternoons with him when his son comes home from school approx 3:00-6:30pm. Appreciate your kind offer. Andmount
  • steve51
    steve51 Member Posts: 7,153 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Andmount

    That’s no problem at all it’s my pleasure to be honest.

    Please please let me help / support you all though the 
    next few months/days ahead?????

    Many Thanks.
  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,673 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Andmount

    I have moved your post to the ask an OT where I hope you can get some support.
    Senior online community officer
  • Andmount
    Andmount Member Posts: 6 Listener
  • Jean_OT
    Jean_OT Member Posts: 513 Pioneering

    Hi @Andmount

    I am sorry to hear of the loss that your family has experienced. Your sister-in-laws death is so recent that your brother is still probably still reeling and it wouldn't be unusual if, at this early stage, he wasn't at all sure what it is the he needs.

    Just knowing that you are their for him may be all he needs at the moment. Do reassure him of that and don't be afraid to ask him what he needs from you. The charity Cruse Bereavement Care publish information about supporting people through the grief process: 


    I know that you said your nephew has a limited understanding of what is happening but there have been studies that demonstrate that people with learning disabilities can benefit from specialist bereavement care. Here is a link to some resources that may be of interest: 


    If your brother has indicated that he wishes you to support him with sorting out practical matters related to your nephew then you may wish to advise that he  request that the local authority conduct an urgent assessment of your nephews care needs and of his needs as a carer.

    The assessment may identify what support needs there are and how they can be addressed. So for example it might offers things like respite care to give your brother a break or the provision of some additional professional care in the home. If you are going to be more 'hands-on' with you nephews needs perhaps you might need some training on lifting techniques, etc.

    At a very practical level the death of a spouse often causes financial hardship. If financial matters are a concern for your brother it could be that worth suggesting that he use the Scope benefit calculator to see if there is anything he could claim. 


    Making sure that your brother is aware of potential sources of emotional support, such as Cruse, may be valuable for him.

    Finally, I just want to say that supporting people through dealing with the death of a loved one can often be challenging for those providing the support. Especially as if often takes a very long time to establish some sort of 'new normal' that feels sustainable in the long term, so please, do take care of your own physical and emotional well-being through this difficult time.

    Best Wishes


    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • Andmount
    Andmount Member Posts: 6 Listener
    Hi Jean,

    Many thanks for your very kind reply.



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