Mornings around here have been notoriously difficult with A.’s time awareness and management. He not only requires double time to get himself ready but we need to keep track of where he is in the morning routine and provide continuous prompts. He seems to have little sense of urgency.
Truthfully, A. has improved these last few years but not so significantly where we can rely on him to get out for the day on his own. He still requires some level of supervision.
No doubt, if you are having similar issues with your young adult, you’ve employed timers, alarms, lists and the like. Perhaps you’ve had more success with those. A.’s focus and inability to plan too far ahead (for him) has him claiming that he’s either “forgotten” or simply feels he doesn’t want to use them. If we press the issue the reminding once again falls on us.
We’ve also had tussles about cell phone use where we’re attempting to reach him but he’s decided to turn his phone off or alternatively, not answer.
The underlying challenge and larger concern, of course, is A.’s rigidity and difficulty to understand that these aforementioned assistive devices–which we all use–can help him on the path to further independence.
Does he truly want to be more independent in whatever way he defines it? Being on your own is a scary proposition. He may sabotage himself subconsciously. He frequently resists learning opportunities and refuses to acknowledge the merits and logic of a point if it shakes his own rationale. I understand this may be unchanging, static behavior on A.’s part but I won’t give up trying to soften the inflexibility. His therapist concurs and encourages us to slowly push his staunch limits.
We continue to grab onto various techniques–old and new–as well as employ
therapies and other interventions.
I’m eager to hear your responses. Have you handled a similar situation? Has your loved one’s inflexibility impacted his or her therapeutic work? If so, how?