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Post adoption blues

(14 Posts)
Buster51 Mon 11-Nov-13 09:36:01

Today is the 1st of many of his daddy working away, we had tears this morning (when it came to putting his coat & school shoes on - something that occurs quite often!) asking for daddy, he's a very upset boy this morning wanting his daddy but went into school ok in the end. Mummy of course had a few tears walking back!

It's hard not to get upset by it, does anyone else find this? Ways to toughen up are needed I think!! smile


Kewcumber Sat 09-Nov-13 00:21:51

Another PAD sufferer here - second the getting out every day. Park, soft play - lots of exercise and fresh air.

Don't let it go on if its not slowly improving over time, go and see your GP. Its a very hard transition, but as we say a lot on here... this too shall pass...

DS didn't look me in the eye for about the first 3 weeks.

I found cuddling him without him making eye contact - so his back to my front with my arms around him helped him relax and get used to the physical contact and we worked on the eye contact separately.

If you google games promoting attachment you might find some helpful games as well.

shockers Fri 08-Nov-13 20:57:57

This might sound strange, but when we fostered and then later when we adopted, one of the ways that helped me and my tiny folk to relax was to brush each other's hair, twist it, plait it... whatever.

It doesn't require eye contact, but it is tactile and relaxing (except when you have a rough one... you have to grin and bear that!)

Lots of love and luck to you all.

flippingebay Fri 08-Nov-13 20:49:13

Read my thread 'is this normal' as I'm in a similar situation. I'm really struggling adjusting to life but have had some really good advice that I keep re-reading to help.

Buster51 Fri 08-Nov-13 20:31:23

Thank you smile in a short week he has improved so much it certainly hasn't gone unnoticed.

Yes we did feel that was possibly what he was trying to do, in addition to possibly being very scared to get close to a new mummy.

I realise it will be baby steps, slow progress is great progress, thank you again for your thoughts it has really helped me smile xx

Devora Fri 08-Nov-13 18:02:01

I found the beginning of life with my adopted daughter really, really hard. Mind, I found the beginning of life with my birth daughter equally tough. It is a HUGE adjustment, and really hard to keep giving and giving and getting so little in return.

The payback is, of course, the love. But that isn't there yet. It will come. 'Fake it till you make it' is often said here.

You know, I assume, that his rejection of you is not because he actually prefers your partner to you? He is a frightened and disrupted little boy who is really, really testing out whether he can trust you, trying out strategies for pushing you away so that you can't break his heart. This is often how it starts.

You are doing a hugely difficult thing and it can be very frightening in those early stages. It will get better! In the meantime, take lots of care of yourself, as much sleep as you can manage, see your GP if it doesn't improve quickly, ask for help when you need it, and keep posting here so we can keep an eye on you.

Buster51 Fri 08-Nov-13 17:45:17

Aw thank you all so much! It has really helped to hear from you all & that I'm not alone.

I am very lucky in that when my partner returns to the forces for work I have a very close social network who are all supporting me.

I will make a point of going out & about more next week when he is at school, I normally exercise regularly but just haven't had the motivation, this is something I will start again.

Thank you all so much again! I will keep reading these posts whenever I am feeling a little low :-)


Happiestinwellybobs Fri 08-Nov-13 16:50:00

I second what everyone has previously said. Although DD was a lot younger, I experienced post adoption depression and quite badly. What helped was getting out of the house everyday - the days where I didn't have a plan were horrendous.

I wish I had asked for help. I didn't feel I was bonding quickly enough with DD, but faking it helped, and eventually the bond was there for real.

This is a huge shock to your system and it is completely natural to feel a whole range of emotions.

18 months down the line, I can honestly say it will get better smile

Broodymomma Fri 08-Nov-13 16:33:48

I am so glad you posted this and wanted you to know you are not alone in how you are feeling. We are just a week in but I have struggled so much with the change and feeling of guilt towards and older ds. Everyone keeps telling me you must be so happy and I smile and say yes but in reality I have cried every day. Dh does not get paternity leave as not been in his job a year yet and I have felt so isolated with this new wee boy.

Remind yourself this is such a huge change and major adjustment for you all. I second what has been said above as I do feel better if we have got out and about as oppose to sitting around the house. Big hugs and remember you are not alone and if you are wrong then I am too!! Pm me anytime from one new mum to another x

Lilka Fri 08-Nov-13 15:37:41

At this stage, what you are feeling is quite common. Your life has totally changed and the stress of that on your body can make you feel dreadful. As Hayleyh34 said, sometimes adoptive parents get caught by feeling "I should be happy, something's wrong with me, I have no right to be so sad when I've just got my child I've struggled so hard to bring into my life". But actually, no, there's NOTHING wrong with you if you're feeling down, it's not at all uncommon and you have every right to feel this way

But, if these feelings continue for weeks, then I really advise you to go and see your GP, because post adoption depression is very real (research has shown it to be pretty similar to post natal depression) and suffering in silence is not good

Right now, look after yourself. As Italian suggested, try and do a bit of excercise daily, eat well (try and get down the amount of calories you normally eat even if you're appetite is reduced and have healthy energy foods) at regular intervals, set times to sleep at night, and don't allow yourself to sleep for long periods during the day, that might all help you and your body. Also if you have time to do something nice for you, like take a long hot bath. It's very hard when you have no motivation, but IMHO keeping a good healthy routine is very important- if you let it all slide then it will take longer for you to get back up to normal again. I had depression at university, I stopped eating and slept whenever and it just put my body in an even worse state and prolonged the depression IMHO.

Do you have family/friends support? You might not feel at all like talking or socialising but getting out and talking to people is also important. Isolation will also make things worse

Be kind to yourself. You haven't done anything wrong, you are doing great in fact, so try not to berate yourself for anything. Tell yourself how much you deserve everything you do for yourself, because you do

There isn't any quick route to feeling happy. You are going to need time to adjust and self care. But you will get there in the end. Hang on in there. I love the saying "this too shall pass", it's very true.

Hayleyh34 Fri 08-Nov-13 14:40:15

Sorry should have added - we went from having 0 children to adopting a 3 year old.

I wish I had acknowledged at the time how bloody hard that would be for most people, not just me!

Hayleyh34 Fri 08-Nov-13 14:38:53

Hi, I had post-adoptive depression at about 3 months in and it lasted for quite a while.

Everything felt so overwhelming and I really at times that I wasn't cut out for it at all.

I got through it with the support of friends and family as well as realising that I needed to be kind to myself. I also forced myself to go out every day, especially when I didn't want to.

I still tend to be very hard on myself and panic a bit when things aren't going well but that's just me!

With hindsight, I probably should have seen my GP but felt that I had no "right" to feel the way I was feeling

Buster51 bless you my dear.

Sadly, I can't advise I am not yet an adopter but did not want to read and run. Please take care of yourself. Find some fun things to while little man is at school. Find some local people, other mums and meet for coffee in daytime for mutual support. There will be some clubs actiivties in area which will be suitable at some time. Some churches run things, family centre etc where you can meet other mums, via school etc. You need support.

Also, make time for an excercise element a day, a walk or swim etc to re-envigorate you.

am sure little man will find fun things to do with you when dad is away and through those shared activities (like painting a picture to send to dad) or icing a cake etc he will grow closer to you.

I am sure it will be fine but as to whether how you feel is normal I will let adopters reply and even if this is outside of what others have experienced I am sure you can overcome it one step at a time.

Buster51 Fri 08-Nov-13 13:53:41

My partner & I have adopted his 4 year old nephew. He doesn't remember us from before his foster care placement, & he now knows us as his forever family, mummy & daddy.

We are 3 weeks into his placement with us, & I must admit I have found it a lot harder than I thought I ever would.

My partner is in the forces. So will be leaving soon for work, it will be me & little man, my worry is he is more comfortable with his daddy, seems to clearly be finding it difficult (understanbly so) a new "mummy". I have found this "rejection" very hard to deal with, more than I should! & as I result worry for when it is just me & him. He is improving I must add, he wouldn't sit by me at all 3 weeks ago.

Aside from the above I find myself just wanting to sleep all of the time (when he is at school!) I have lost all motivation to do anything, this is a whole new life for me, no previous children, straight out of a full time, demanding job to 6 months off work. I cry easily, & have to keep reminding myself why we are doing this.

I just wanted to know if these are normal post adoption feelings? & tips on how to start to enjoy your "new life" & changes that adoption brings.

Thank you!


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