Multiple Bereavements 24 year old son with autism and LD

Our son has experienced multiple sudden losses over the past 4 years including the death through suicide by one of the support workers in the rock band for adults with LD that he plays in.see film below currently nominated for BAFTA

More recently we lost our family dog ( his best friend) and our respite carer. His understanding of the permanence of death and that it happens to everyone has been very limited. This has had an effect on his behaviour and functioning with periods of extreme loud repetition,shouting/ music/ making noise with cupboards/ light switches/ electrical gadgets. Also low mood and withdrawal, there has been limited access to regular activities during Covid and no easy access to specialist services. We reached crisis point recently and are now awaiting review of rolling respite options. Feeling quite demoralised and exhausted through needs as Carer not being recognised. We are here primarily for son says social worker. What happened to good old fashioned whole family social work?

Hi Jane,
welcome to the forum.

Your son has suffered some major losses, not helped by the loss of life as we know it due to the pandemic.

I have watched some of the film, but not all of it, I hope the band is able to meet again very soon - it sounds such a great outlet for the band members and they can all support each other through the loss of such a valued musician and mentor.

Will you get another dog, in the future?

Your son’s social worker sounds very short-sighted - by not supporting you as a family. Does your son have an advocate? An advocate could help him argue why respite is important for him too. Have you had a carer’s assessment? You might benefit from an advocate too. They usually understand the system well and often know how to get the best outcomes.


Hello Jane, welcome to the forum. Your son’s social worker sounds like the social worker who visited us after my husband had a stroke and said that because he didn’t want a social worker, she wouldn’t be visiting again as he was the one she was allocated to. I was interested in your comment about whole family social work as in the early seventies, when I was a social worker in Liverpool, that was how we worked - with whole families - by geographical area rather than by individual need. I don’t know when it all changed.