Last reply 3 years ago

Could anyone offer me any advice please? I have a 13 year old son, it is just the two of us and I work full time. He knows that I have MS, but I don’t think he has any idea of the severity of it. I appear relatively OK.
He does nothing to help around the house and was quite happy to watch to watch me mowing the lawn yesterday.
Apart from being bone idle, he is a kind, loving, happy 13 year old.
Do I come down hard and demand that he helps more? Do I get him to google MS, so that he gets it a bit more? Or do I simply chill and let him get on with it?
Anyone else have teenagers and have any words of wisdom for me? xx

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3 years ago

@lisajane , it can’t be easy for either of you.

But, there may be something in this publication :-

You can read online or get a printed copy delivered.

3 years ago

A friend of mine faced the same scenario – neither her children nor her husband understood. The problem was that they thought they did! Things improved exponentially when a physio (frustrated by her lack of improvement) asked to come to the house and speak to the family. Home truths – how they were contributing to the worsening of their mother’s MS symptoms by allowing her to become fatigued; how her disability had to be tackled as a family priority and so on. Your son needs to know how much of his mother he could potentially lose if he doesn’t start taking a more active role in keeping you well – but it will probably take someone in a white coat to tell him so.

3 years ago

Hi Lisajane, I feel your pain. I have 2 teenagers. I also work. I sat down with them both (and my husband) recently with a list of jobs. I explained how my MS was invisible but very real and I needed help. We doled the jobs out and agreed to try it for 3 months. We are 6 weeks in and bar a bit of resentment at the start, it’s working ok. At least I feel that it is! We will sit down and review in a few weeks. My son does the bare minimum but he still does it. He may even manage a smile next week…..but not holding my breath.

3 years ago

I was diagnosed in the mid-90’s and my two were teenagers then. Fatigue became the most obvious thing. i would try and push thru and become incapable of finishing sentences.
My 14 yr old daughter would say MOM, just lie down, I’ll cook tea.

We decided they would do the washing up. It wasn’t popular but they DID do it – under pressure!
Happy to say that 20 years on, my son still washes up for me, still moans but know now I’m wiped out. As they older they do get a bit more understanding.

Cleofitz is right and cameron…take him to the next appointment with MS nurse. Sit down for a serious talk….bring in a friend to make it less confrontational.
Washing up, getting the laundry, helping with shopping all small stuff but its stuff a teenager can do.
Also consider what you absolutely CAN’t do. I pay a cleaner and a gardener now cuz I cannot do it and my son will not.

3 years ago

Hi @lisajane I don’t want to state the obvious but has anyone shown your son how to do the jobs around the house..? Does he know how to work the washing machine and that colours go together, light and darks etc and where the powder/liquid goes.. how much.. and where to put the Fabric softener too…and then how to hang out the clothes.. maybe how to iron and fold things and has anyone shown him how to wash up.. (sounds silly but I went out with a fella many years ago who’s mum did EVERYTHING for him and he had no clue how to wash dishes.. and when he did it was painful to watch.. 🙁 ) Or even where the hoover lives..? I am a single parent and I have an 18 year old Autistic son who does very little but I know he can do a few things if need be because I taught him a few basics.. and my 15 year old daughter just gets on with stuff when she wants too (Hovering, making her dinner and offering me a cup of tea at times..) And when these things are done without being asked I find a little monetary reward can go a long way.. (I used to pay my son 20p to hang out the washing.. he was thrilled..) I hope that a few words from you first to help him to understand how much you would appreciate his help with a few things around the house. Little and often and quick jobs till he finds his “Domestic goddess” feet. You are a team..!! Best of luck to you both

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