How can I help my two sons as a single autistic mom?

I need him to be working on independence. He can live with me and go to school or move out. One is 21, and the other is 17.

I had a few other health issues for the past few years.  My ex is remarried and spends very little time with him. I have succeeded at raising my kids without violence and humiliation, which was my goal as a divorced mom. I will get triggered if you start with the autistic moms are bad moms thing. I am fully aware of my failings and successes as a parent, and I do not want to process that with you.

Right now, I asked him to pay me rent as an incentive to get him to go to school. But it’s not working, he’s smart but non-materialistic.

I want him to plan for what he wants to do for a career. He wants more money than a sandwich maker but is not motivated by money. He is extremely internally motivated. The brothers aren’t close. I need to figure out a plan for the younger son too.

2 replies
  1. Penelope
    Penelope says:

    Your personal issues are holding you back from helping your kids. I know you don’t want to talk about autism, but you can’t help your kids with their autism if you don’t want to look at your own autism. The most important thing to focus on right now is examining family autism so you don’t leave your kids all alone to deal with it by themselves once they leave your house.

    The thing that you needed to be able to do that you didn’t, earlier, was make your kids do difficult things. It’s very hard to do that. For a wide range of reasons. But he’s old for that now. The only difficult thing you can get him to do now is move out. If you gave him his rent money back that he paid you he would have enough money to get his own apartment. And he can start figuring out his life.

    You can help your second son learn to do difficult things and make tough choices now. Help your second son get himself in a position to be ready to make a choice after high school.


  2. Chris
    Chris says:

    Can you give an example of what it means to make your kids do difficult things? What does that look like, at different ages? I think that it leaves a lot of room for interpretation (and thus loopholes)

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