Autistic are famous for not being able to take meds for depression or anxiety. Causes meltdowns. No Family left Do not even know my 2 cousins really, due to an old family fued. I have Dark thoughts 24/7.

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You have been so brave and managed to keep things going so long.
But at some point, and I believe this is IT, you need help to achieve some good changes in your life.

Seek help from an Advocate, such as a Social Worker.
This person should be able to help you do a number of things
--like finding a place for your Mom, instead of under the same roof as you.
ALSO, and maybe first, to get you a Safety Net, so you have Disability income, and perhaps Subsidized housing for yourself.

Most Welfare Departments , you can start at the front desk, asking for help--say "I need a safety net", "I cannot manage by myself, I need help", and tell them why [you have ASD and cannot manage anymore--you are in crisis, and need help].

The welfare department usually has other Social Workers in the back offices, who can help get your application, IF NEEDED, through to get you Disability income. And get you fixed up with at least some income, maybe some housing, if that is needed.

Maybe we just got lucky, but I managed to get a Safety net for my adult child who has ASD, within 3 months of first application.
IT has taken a bit longer to find a fairly decent apartment, and that is a shared rental with another adult person with ASD.
It is on a bus route, so they can get around by themselves, and near shopping, so they can walk to get most of the things they need.
They each have a "companion animal" [these are usually Exempt from the "pet deposit" fees managers usually charge renters] , which help them cope.

It is possible for you to get some help.
I am certain of it.
If I can get other people helped, there surely must be someone near you, who can help you get the helps you need.

You have tried so hard, so long, it is time you had some relief!
But You have to call someone in order for them to help you
....calling a Crisis Line, for instance, and telling them you need help, that you need a safety net, and you seek an "Advocate" who can help you get the help you need--that should get them to give you some suggestions of who to call first.
That is part of what people who answer those Crisis Line Calls are supposed to do: refer people to where they can find the help they most need.

The Welfare Department near you should have, or can print out, lists of agencies and resource people you can contact for lots of different things, like food, clothing, supplies, housing, and so forth.

Please call to get some help.
You deserve to have help, too!


You are very brave, strong and wise! Now it's time and okay for you to make a brave, strong and wise decision to place your Mom for help so that you and she can live a better life. You have overcome many challenges, read the above post, seek and accept the help that you so greatly need and deserve. The changes that will come may be different, difficult but desperately needed. I wish you well. Please keep us posted.

Kathryn, like you I am an Atheist. I have never had any imaginary friends in the sky and need none. I read your profile carefully and feel so deeply for you. It sounds like your mom just has vision problems and perhaps could have her own assisted care apartment where she could have someone come in to help her daily and where she could enjoy socializing with others.

I have several adopted children in addition to my biological one and chose the adopted ones due to their challenges with autism and with Down Syndrome. Autistic people have problems, yes, but are not stupid. I think your main problem is that you have decided to give up. Don't do it! That is the depression talking. Autistic people can use pill bottles that have the daily meds set out and do many other things as well to remember meds You are just 62. Take a look at and see how you can have the life you choose. Barbara Sher's excellent book (read it free at the site) is life changing and will help you step-by-step to see what you want and then plan step-by-step to get it. Perfect for autistics too who need structure in life. You can still have a great life, Kathryn. Love to you and to your mom.

i can totally relate. i have a bpd husband who chased away all my family and friends in the past and an adopted daughter who has a terminal condition where her trachea is deteriorating. people are really hostile toward me and suspicious of me so i leave them alone. for my own sake i try to live a very clean and moral life. i am my own cheerleader although i am quickly losing the cheer. right now i am forcing myself to live in the moment so i am neglecting the long term goals that i should be pursuing. i never wanted to be a nurse when i grew up but i did elect to have these companions. i guess i just have to own up. but i understand your feelings. its not fair to have to always be the supportive one and to never get any support. i think the real issue is that the world never uses us the way we want to be used. the world uses us the way the world needs to use us at the time it needs to use us. in the end, its all beyond our control. so we might as well just sit back and enjoy the ride.


You have done an amazing job, taking care of Mom so long!!!
Few caregivers can last so long, even in better circumstances.

You have company!
I deal with high-functioning ASD in our family, too, as well as some family members with mental illnesses.
It is crazy-making to deal with an elder who is "losing it", or worse, who never really had it!
It is UNrealistic for many [especially those with ASD] to think we can cope with doing long-term care for elders who might not have been stable to start with, and get worse with age.

You need lots of help, and many kinds, locally to you.
It is a confusing process, even for those without ASD.

To get help, maybe start with a Social Worker,
either from "Area Agency on Aging" closest to you,
or, the Welfare Department nearest you.
Someone who can evaluate your situation and your Mom's, as separate cases, and find proper helps.

The goals for you might look like:
----Mom needs taken care of by someone else, and/or, somewhere else;
----YOU need help getting your needs met, to have safety nets, and to help you sort out your feelings and your troubles so you can find some Joy.

Please call for help.
IF you cannot figure out how to contact a social worker,
call the Police,
or else the Suicide Prevention Call center or Crisis Line
--most hospitals have Crisis Lines, or can give you a phone number for them, if you cannot find the number, it is usually even listed in the front information pages in phone books.

THESE statements are helpful to tell whoever you call:
*---"I need help; I am autistic and very depressed, I cannot do it alone";
*---"I have been stuck caring for Mom for a long time, and cannot do it anymore."
*---"I need safety nets and helps for myself, and need people who understand ASD to help me get them for myself and for Mom",
If you need to live with someone, they might be able to get you that kind of arrangement, too
[sometimes that might take a few tries to get one that works well]
[it took our adult child about 4 tries before finding someone similar, and they get along well].

There are people who work -With- you to solve these troubles.

Contrary to some popular beliefs, those with ASD have plenty of feelings
--we just may not be able to talk about them easily, or identify them as readily, or feelings run away with us sometimes.
We are not jerks, not retarded--just wired differently.
We need help getting the helps that others find easy.

Please keep us posted as to how things are working things out for you!!!


Praying for you. I know how you feel , been there wrote the book.It was take a break from caregiving or let caregiving break me.. I chose to take a break. My Dad will be staying in respite care for a month. He has decided he is well enough to live on his own so if all goes well he will get his wish. I will still be the primary caregiver but at least I can count on having a months break..Caregiving is hard especially when you have a difficult family member.. Whew !! Geesh !!
God help us !!

Please read Kathryn's profile if you are going to encourage her to continue taking care of her mother . . . I'm saying this because she has bigger issues herself than some other caregivers have.

We need to the the strong one for our Mom, thats how I feel. Your Mom probably feels the same but she needs you more than ever now. Does your Mom get social security? Use it and hire help to get yourself out, you have to! Shopping or walking is therapy and you have to do that to continue to care for her. Deep Breath, come on, hire someone, go out and clear your mind. Best of Luck!

Your feelings are quite common for people who are caregiving and get no time off. You need to call the Area For Aging in your county for help. They can help with getting home health care to come to your home to help with your mother so you can get some time for yourself. You deserve some time for yourself♥!

My heart goes out to you, but that isn't going to help you. You sound like you are to the point of breaking. Please reach out and get help, even if it is from a suicide hotline. You need to talk to someone about your situation. Please know you are not alone in this. We caregivers sometimes feel things we thought we would never feel. They are our loved ones and sometimes I feel so guilty about not wanting to do this anymore. I want my life back. You have to sit back and understand that our loved ones are not doing this to us to hurt us, they don't like it any better than we do, but it is what it is. Please search out the help you before there is no going back. You also deserve to have a happy life. Thoughts and prayers with you. Please keep us informed.

You need to make a change. As caregivers we often feel guilty when we think about what our caregiving is doing to us physically, emotionally and mentally. Just thinking about giving up these duties makes us feel so guilty that we don't do what we need to do to take care of ourselves. When we are not well, we are not good caregivers and those we care for suffer. Making a change is not only for you but also for the one you are caring for. Start out taking a temporary break and then decide if you need to make a permanent change. But the most important thing is that you need to make a change now and take care of yourself. I wish you the best.

Not sure what to say, but I feel the same way.

Hi Kathryn,
Please find the help you need through a social service and shout out to a friend if you can. You need to make a drastic change in your life.
Although my situation is must different than yours, when I cared for my mother 24/7, I also felt desperate, hopeless and depressed. I had people around me but I still felt alone because she was my responsibility. It gave me the impetus to make arrangements to place my mother in a nursing home.
It was a difficult process which I painfully dragged myself through.
2 1/2 years later she is happier and I am not broken anymore.

My mother always saved everything that broke from vases to teacups. She would save all the pieces and carefully glue them all together. Although they never looked quite the same with visible seems everywhere, they always functioned and held water. I'm the teacup . . scarred but functioning and no longer in pain . . relieved that we both made it through a situation which sometimes seemed hopeless.

Please find the help you need even if you have to drag your self through it. You are in my thoughts.

hugs and love ~ Ria

You have all you need to save yourself, and that is HOPE. We (including you) see proof of that, in that you posted here for help. Please see how self-empowering that mere act is! and YOU did that. Do NOT give up.
Remember that the darkest comes before the dawn, and you are about to rise! You will get help. It WILL happen! Even when you see no way out, it will come. Prayers, Light, and Love has been poured over you.

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