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When a young person starts work, especially if it’s their first job, many parents and carers feel anxious for them, and want to know everything that’s going on – that’s fine, and completely normal, but lots of questions can overwhelm a young person with a learning disability or autism.
To encourage answers that give you an insight into their day at work, ask questions that are open, and do not require a simple “yes” or “no” response.


Instead of asking…


“Did you have a good day?”  

“What did you do at work today?”



“Are you enjoying the job?”


“Tell me about something exciting/funny that happened at work today.”

“Are the people nice?”


“How did people help you at work today?”

“Did you go anywhere for lunch?”


“How did you spend your lunch break?”

“Were you nervous?”


“What helped you to settle in?”

“Is your manager nice?”


“How would you describe your manager?”

“Are you looking forward to tomorrow?”


“What are you excited about for tomorrow?”

It’s possible that a young person may arrive home and feel like they need some space, or not want to talk about their day straight away.  For many parents and carers, this can be a worry as it might appear that the young person hasn’t enjoyed their day at work.

It’s a good idea not to overload them with questions – the work environment can bring many new sensory experiences that are overwhelming, so allow the young person some space to wind down and relax.  If you are genuinely worried that the young person feels anxious about returning to work, and you need to know what’s going on, you could try saying things like:

“It’s normal to feel a bit anxious during your first few days at work.  Is there anything I can do to help?”

“You don’t seem yourself.  Can you tell me what happened to make you feel like this?”

“It’s OK not to enjoy work straight away.  What can we do to help you feel more settled?”

If the young person really doesn’t want to talk about work, and they are being supported by Engage to Change, you are able to contact the supported employment agency providing the job coach and speak about your concerns to get some reassurance.