Not Sure What to Do About My 19 Year Old Son
Our son is actually very loving, bright, articulate & wonderful, but he's been so down the last several years we don't know what to do. As a kid he loved swimming, beach, cooking, biking, games etc. but now does nothing but use computer & sleep. Some years ago he was victim of violent crime and never has cried it out. Thus he's stuck emotionally, PTSD in my opinion, and goes months without speaking to us at all. This has gone on for years.
None of the colleges he applied for took him (grades not high enough). He was in a computer training program where he left house daily at 7am in tie & dress clothes but got kicked out due to 4 undone homework assignments. He was told he could reapply next time. Now he's back to his shell, up all night on computer, in bed all day since January. Computer is his forte, and he's worked fixing and installing them as first job. He could easily get a high tech job, even work at the Apple Store, but won't apply or do anything but stare at the screen, eat minimally and sleep all day. He did go off with suitcase recently. I was up at 6am Thur. and he'd texted me "I'm out of town till Tues. evening. Don't worry I'll be fine" He wouldn't answer calls or texts and had me so worried. Well he got back OK. I woke up and he was in bed Wed. am, but never did tell me where he went/what he did. Last time he spoke to us was 1/24.
My husband says stop babying him (cooking favorite food, buying treats like icecream, etc.) since he won't say thank you, wash dishes, clean up his mess or help in any way. I do it to show my love, since I can't hug him or have a conversation. Also he's awfully thin (malnourshed, eating hardly anything) and I want him to eat well. Ice cream has calcium, iron &protein. We both tell him to get a job, even minimum wagejob like his friend, but for what we can see he's not trying.
We're planning a trip we want to include him in but are sure he won't go. If he won't he'll be alone for first time 4 weeks. We'll leave him $ but I'm worried he'll simply run out of food & not go shopping. The computer reigns supreme for him and he hates doing anything that takes him away from the screen more than 5 mintues. My husband says he has to sink or swim, this is good for him, force him out of his shell into the world. I don't know. I guess that's true, but I'm so worried.
I'd like to find support group for parents of computer addicted kids. Maybe we can start it here? Anyone interested? I'm in Berkeley. There has to be some way to get through to him. I've seen many therapists but haven't been able to solve this. He won't see therapists for last 3 years or more. He won't even go to the dentist. It makes me cry to write this.