This last week, Alan called me so upset his voice was shaking. "Mom, I want to move out of here!" These were the first words out of his mouth. He had tried to call me several times that day, and was obviously very agitated. As I questioned him, his chief complaint was that "people keep asking stupid questions" and "sometimes they get in front of the tv while I am trying to watch it and I don't like that." We talked for a while, and I told him we needed to have a meeting so we could talk with other staff about his complaints. His dad called him later that night, and by then Alan was calmer.

The next day was a repeat. Alan tried to call several times, and I was finally able to take the call. "Jim is touching me and I don't like it!" Jim is one of the staff at Alan's residential program. Alan does not like to be touched. I was not worried that Alan was not safe, but knew he was getting very upset. He was locked in his room and not able to get out.

Fortunately, Kenny was able to go over to see Alan. Alan had not showered, shaved, or changed clothes in several days. The "touching" was an attempt to get Alan to get out of bed. Alan's perceptions of situations are clouded by his disability, and his misunderstanding of others' intentions. This will always be something we deal with, but waxes and wanes in intensity.

By Saturday, all was well. Alan was happy, showered, shaved, and in good spirits. Same with today. But now the thoughts are running around in the back of my brain. How do we help him make the transition to working or at least going to some kind of class or workshop? This staying in his apartment all day is not good, and makes for the problems we dealt with last week.

More changes are on the horizon. Don't know what they will be right now, but they're coming.


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