|My brother has austism and OCD. The OCD has gotten a lot worse since the beginning of the pandemic. We're not sure if he's still taking his meds. Can you tell us about how you support family that's disabled and lives semi-independently?
My parents are his primary help, but they're getting older, and he lies to them all the time about whether he's cleaning his apartment, taking his meds, etc. At some point I'll become the primary contact.
He owns an apartment, pays his bills, saves for retirement, and works full-time, but cannot handle some basic living skills. Problem areas include buying new clothes when they develop holes or stains, doing laundry, throwing things out, taking out the trash, cleaning on a regular basis, etc. He mostly eats takeout and food my parents bring him.
He was keeping up for a while, but his OCD has gotten worse. He refused to let my parents into his apartment for six months, but finally let us in with masks.
His bathroom, when we visited this weekend to clean, was coated in soap scum from constantly showering and washing his hands, and the toilet area was caked with feces. (He refuses whenever my parents offer to hire him a cleaning service.)
He hasn't done any laundry because he's afraid of COVID and refuses to use the laundry room. We would get him a portable washer, but he's not responsible enough to deal with leaks, etc. (He destroyed the floor in the bathroom a few years ago.)
He used to use a laundry service, but stopped. He's just been wearing the same clothes over and over, and using disposable underwear and masks.
We cleaned and took his laundry and left some food, but we're struggling to figure out how to best help. My parents were suggesting bringing him back home and renting out the apartment. We'll bring up the cleaning service and laundry service again. Money is not a big issue for us, but time and energy are. (My parents work full time and are aging; I live six hours away, work full-time, and have a stepkid.)
If you have family in this situation, how do you help? How do you cope? Thanks.