Drawing the line during home study...

(88 Posts)
wonderinglots Wed 06-Nov-13 18:49:47

Have NC'd for this.

We are well into our home study. During our home study we have done many things (including modifications to our home) that we didn't necessarily agree with, but did 'for the greater good' and have talked about countless things that we think only had a tenuous link to being relevant in our quest to adopt.

We are now being asked to do something that I fundamentally disagree with - My view is that the thing we are being asked to do is Orwellian. DH is fairly 'meh' about it. Any resistance to doing it will be seen as not being committed to the process (rather than the objection to the principal of being asked to do it - which is what this most definitely is).

We have been told not doing this is a deal breaker in our application so I'm not even sure why I'm posting this as we have no choice....

Have any of you have 'drawn the line' and refused to do something during home study? If so, what was the outcome?

I do understand how you feel (but bit difficult not knowing what the thing is) as you feel like you have no choice really.
weve been asked to do several home things. Couple aew fine. One we disagree with but will still do.
Have you spokeb to your s.wrker? have they given you specific reasons/do you understand the reasons theyve given?
sorry not much help.

wonderinglots how frustrating for you.

If you need to do this to adopt and want to adopt I guess you must do it! I am really now curious so if you want to tell me, please pm me!

Here are some things I have heard of people being asked to do and not a wanting to do.... modify their home in some way, modify their garden in some way.

In the case of a friend they did not do these things and did not adopt. We were asked to fit safety glass or film over glass which was a bit annoying as we had an 18 month old when we moved in and we chose which glass we felt needed sorting. We were also told to put stickers in a large glass door so a child do not bump into it. The child who visited peeled the stickers off! Whether they got as far as trying to eat them or not I can't remember but I took them down. We are having a lid made for our sand box because we can't find one to buy (after 5 years of DD safely using sandbox without a lid). We found the house stuff the hardest and DH struggled a bit as he had to do the stuff. But ultimately we felt with all the home safety stuff, even though we felt house was very safe, we had to do it.

If you want to talk please pm me.

Best of luck with whatever you decide to do. (Personally unless they are asking you to do something that is illegal, imorral or dangerous I would be tempted to do it but I can't say that as I have no idea what it is).

Oh we tried a tempory tarpauline lid to sand box which sunk in and filled with rain water creating a drowning hazard, so we took that off too!

Kewcumber Thu 07-Nov-13 08:38:04

My line in the sand would be dangerous, illegal or immoral aside from that I gritted my teeth and got on with whatever was asked. Home studies aren't really the time for taking a stand over anything I'm.

Kewcumber Thu 07-Nov-13 08:38:36

I'm = IMO

RudolphLovesoftplay Thu 07-Nov-13 08:52:48

I'm with Kew, do what you need to do and complain later if needs be.

Moomoomie Thu 07-Nov-13 08:59:44

I am sure they are not asking you to do anything illegal. So, I'm afraid if you really do want to adopt, you are going to have to grit your teeth and get on with it.
Think of it as good experience for when a child is placed with you.

Can't imagine anything illegal, imoral or dangeroous really but maybe something you feel uncomfortable with. So it's working out how you can deal with whatever they are asking you to do and not allow it to be a problem. My friend did not make aletratin to her house and garden because of costs. I respect her choice but I think ultimately that failure to do it is what stopped her adopting at that time, we have lost touch but I would be surprised if she has managed to adopt since.

KristinaM Thu 07-Nov-13 14:27:38

What everyone else said. Do it

But don't complain until you have an adoption order on the last child you plan to adopt. And even then know that you are risking getting post adoption support it you need it. They really REALLY don't like people who complain .

When we had treatment with donor eggs we were required to have counselling. I expect I felt i did notte need it but had it and it was useful. When we approached council were told to wait 6 months. Did not want to. Felt ready. But was not Andre ended up waiting 2 years. Just my experience. Sometimes these rules can be helpful.

And not Andre!!!!

Kewcumber Thu 07-Nov-13 15:03:54

I was wondering who this Andre was, Italian wink

André Previn en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andr%C3%A9_Previn famous pianist, I am so musical, me!

Kewcumber Thu 07-Nov-13 17:06:52

I was thinking more along the lines of him

Still musical though kind of

TrinnyandSatsuma Thu 07-Nov-13 21:42:46

Hi. Without knowing what it is you've been asked to do that makes you uncomfortable, it's hard to say, but I would err on the side of caution here.

The assessment is about showing your dedication, resilience, flexibility etc. Please take care and decide which battles are worth fighting. We were asked for things that we thought were a bit over kill, but went with it all, believing that there is a good reason behind all of it.

In the end, it was all worth it. Our boy is snoring and snuffling in his bedroom down the corridor.

All the best for the assessment xx

TeenAndTween Sat 09-Nov-13 18:37:19

There were various things from a 'safety' point of view that were noted for us. Time consuming things we did, but for example we did not child proof our home until after matching panel. We weren't going to live with child locks etc until we needed to. But our SW was happy with that.

Your use of the word Orwellian got me thinking.

The one thing that some prospective adopters can find strange is being asked to use contraception, which can seem weird if they have spent years trying and failing to conceive. So I am wondering to myself whether this is the issue.

If so, the thing is that it costs masses for you to be assessed. Then if you are linked the last thing they want is for you to find out you are pregnant after matching / intros or placement. The disruption to a newly placed child who will need your time and attention could be massive if a (birth) baby is added to the mix. So people do need to actively commit to using contraception during the adoption process, even if it seems instinctively not right/fair.

Of course, it is probably something else altogether.

teen that's a good point.
I have been told I need to use contraception (like you said, ridiculous when even assisted conception hasn't worked) but I fully understand why and have got to the point where I don't want to get pregnant as I have put all that to bed so to speak and one little tablet a day is a small price to pay for our little one.

drspouse Sat 09-Nov-13 21:27:01

I have heard a few people told to put on socket covers which are dangerous, though it's not like you can't take them off when the SW has gone.

namechangesforthehardstuff Sat 09-Nov-13 21:52:34

Yes I thought of that Drspouse but you could surely just explain that and show them the online campaign?

Sorry OP this is kind of turning into 'guess the problem' innit?

wonderinglots Sun 10-Nov-13 12:08:41


Sorry for disappearing. What we've been asked to do isn't a secret, just wanted to canvas views.

DH has sperm still banked from many years ago. We renew the agreement for storage annually and this year, the renewal fell before we'd formally applied.

I am not infertile and we have never tried IVF. I have known for many years I will never have birth children. We have spent time in home study talking about whether we have resolved any feelings of loss about not having birth children. We have. Our only option, if we don't get approved to adopt, would be to consider surrogacy. We hadn't considered this before the ultimatum. Even now. It's not a realistic option, but is the only option remaining for us...

We have been told, in order to 'prove' we're over not having birth children to panel, we have to dispose of his sperm. I asked what they'd ask me to do to prove 'I'm over it'. Their answer was, if we were both fertile, they'd ask us to use contraception after approval. But as DH is infertile, they 'probably won't' which left me a bit hmm

I don't understand how ditching DH's sperm proves we don't want birth children. We could use a sperm donor??

We'll do it as we've been told if we don't, they won't support our application... And we really don't have unresolved issues around having our own children. It just feels like a tick in a box on a list somewhere... And as I say, a bit Orwellian.

PS... Why are socket covers dangerous??

TeenAndTween Sun 10-Nov-13 13:32:47

Would a possible compromise be to agree to dispose of his sperm after approval (or after matching?).

Maryz Sun 10-Nov-13 13:44:21

I was all set to tell you to go along with whatever they want, but I'm not sure about this.

Essentially, it isn't like asking you to use contraception (which is fair, as teen explains well). It's akin to asking you, or more accurately your dh, to be sterilised.

They would never ask a man to have a vasectomy before being approved to adopt. That would be ridiculous.

I think you should go back to them and discuss the possibility of deferring the decision until after matching, because are they really expecting you to permanently close off the option of your dh having children, ever, when you haven't even had a child placed with you.

maryannmarie Sun 10-Nov-13 13:48:13

That's disgusting. I had no idea that they could ask you to do something like that and I totally get why you don't feel right about it. Unfortunately, it seems there's nothing you can do though. Wishing you loads of luck smile

Moomoomie Sun 10-Nov-13 13:48:52

Goodness, that is a difficult dilemma.
I agree with MAryz. You really do need to talk to your SW about this, and not be blackmailed.
Puts a few safety issues around the house into perspective!

wonderinglots Sun 10-Nov-13 13:51:11

Yup.. This is point. Would they ask me to get my tubes tied pre approval?

We absolutely wouldn't have renewed next year, after approval (for a start, it costs a lot of money). DH was all up for getting rid last year, I said 'let's not tempt fate'.

We have discussed it with them and they have told us it is a deal breaker pre approval.

It is the principle that has me wondering whether to draw the line. Nothing more... But any reluctance will be spun as us not being sure about not having birth children.

The have said it is the only thing standing between us and approval.

Maryz Sun 10-Nov-13 13:57:10

God, they have you over a rope.

I don't know what to say, really.

I do think you should raise the "do you ask everyone to have a hysterectomy/vasectomy before approval" and see if you can get them to rethink. Can you explain that it's not that you want to use it, but that you feel it's tempting fate?

FamiliesShareGerms Sun 10-Nov-13 14:07:09

This would be a red line for me, OP. I think you need to raise this with your SW and up the management chain (it is probably not something they have encountered much, so may well have misinterpreted any guidance that they may have on this issue).

Reasons for my objection would include:

- there is no guarantee that you will have a child placed with you, either by this agency or another.

- dDisposing of your husband's sperm now means that other options eg using a surrogate are closed off.

- even if you do adopt, you may decide to pursue other options for a sibling, and you are entitled to keep that option open. (As others have said, they don't insist on vasectomies / hysterectomies for other adoptive parents)

- you could commit to not using the sperm until a child is placed with you and for a certain period after (which is the same as using contraception). This is a reversible position.

- there is no need to require you to make some grand gesture of commitment (and you would want to know from your SW whether s/he had particular concerns on this point for some reason).

Hope you can reach a satisfactory agreement.

FamiliesShareGerms Sun 10-Nov-13 14:12:09

Not that it's necessarily any help to you OP, but DH and I probably could have another birth child if we were prepared to keep going through the miscarriages and risk of premature birth. We had to demonstrate that we were genuinely committed to adoption and all that that entails, but at no point were we told that we had to commit to not ever trying to have another birth child. Even though we were both convinced that adoption was how we were going to complete our family (and DH has since had the snip) the very fact of being told that we could not ever contemplate a birth child - which is in essence what the SW are saying to you, if I understand your position correctly - would have felt intrinsically wrong to me.

Kewcumber Sun 10-Nov-13 15:16:32

I would be very tempted to tell them to fuck off. But of course I wouldn't.

What I would do is have a meeting with them and say that what concerns you is the similarity to asking any other man (or woman) to be sterilised. There is actually nothing wrong with having birth children after adopting with a suitable gap and what are saying that you must never have the opportunity to consider that.

I would want to be very clear who is insisting on this decision and I would want them to insist on this decision publically (metaphorically at least) I would ask if its possible as a minimum for this decision to be taken by the adoption manager and frankly I'd also want my opinion escalated to the Decision Maker (who I'm guessing would be the head of SS) I would even consider putting in writing that if the decision is destroy the sperm or be refused an adoption is supported by all relevant professionals (including quite possibly decision maker and panel members) then you will comply. But you would like to understand that what in effect they are saying is that will never accept any parents who might want to consider one day having biological children.

I can see why this is such a tough decision for you. Asking for a discussion (in as non-confrontational a way as possible) to include Decision Maker and panel as its obviously a policy decision about adoption and birth children might well call their bluff. It may also piss them off - hence as non-confrontationally as possible!

See, now we all feel differently knowing what the subject is!

MrsDeVere Sun 10-Nov-13 15:24:19

I think they need to take this to Legal.
I agree that they have misinterpreted guidelines and their ultimatum is draconian.
What if they don't approve you to adopt?

I am sorry you are being put through this.

Hels20 Sun 10-Nov-13 17:47:30

I think this is awful - and it might well have been a red line for me. We were always told that if we wanted to adopt we had to agree to use contraception once we had been approved and for about 18 months after a child was placed with us. This request seems out of kilter with almost every other borough's agency's rules. This makes my blood boil. Even if you might want to preserve your chance of possibly having a biological child later on that should be your right.

zeeboo Sun 10-Nov-13 18:01:23

Wow Op what a choicehmm to me this just further proves how corrupt and power obsessed Social Services are.

wonderinglots Sun 10-Nov-13 18:14:17

It isn't social services telling us to do it.

Thanks for all your messages. I may talk to BAAF.

TrinnyandSatsuma Sun 10-Nov-13 19:13:09

Following my previous post, I think I need to revise my views! This sounds very unreasonable to me.

Adoption is our first choice and we have never tried to get pregnant. As far as I am aware, my husband and I are fertile and could conceive if we tried, BUT, we committed to social workers that we would use contraception and we obviously stick to that. At no stage was there a request for anything further, like a vasectomy, which I know isn't quite the same as you are being asked, but is kind of similar.

Like PP have said, there is no guarantee of approval, successful match etc, so asking you to burn all your bridges at this stage feels unfair.

wonderinglots this is totally out of order and I am wondering if it infringes your husband's human rights. This is essentially his irreplaceable 'property' which they are requiring him to destroy!

I completely agree with all other outraged posters and this totally changes my earlier answer! If you are going with a voluntary agency, they have no children to place anyway so they cannot be sure to place anyone with you. If your DH chose to use a surrogate he could be a parent to a biologial child in another 10 or 20 years, I am not saying he would want to but technically he could. Are they really asking him to make such a monumental decision.

I fundamentally disagree with this. After years of fertility treatment I know that some degree of control (like saying when you are ready to stop) is really important. You are no trying and could committt to not using the sperm but to be honest i feel they are totally out of order and I even wonder if it is legal for them to say this! (Outraged reader!!)

Sorry - they should read - and could committt to not using the sperm for a period of time but ultimately the decision about this sperm is your DH's.

RudolphLovesoftplay Sun 10-Nov-13 20:39:31

I totally take back what I earlier wrote. I honestly cannot believe what they are asking you to do!! I agree with Italian, this has to be infringement of human rights. However, I'm not sure what the next step is, I would post in legal and see what an expert says.

wonderinglots don't reply if you don't want to but is this a voluntary agency asking you to do this?

Some counties have quite a lot of children their are looking for parents for and would possibly welcome you! This lot (whoever they are) seem very suspious! It almost seems weird that your DH wanted to stop the storage and now you are having to think this all through because whom-ever has made this an issue! If that makes sense.

roadwalker Sun 10-Nov-13 21:02:08

I am really shocked at what they expect
Fertile couples adopt so I can't see the difference
What if you adopted then, later down the line, split up - your dh may want children with someone else

I am not for a minute suggesting this may happen but it takes away his choice and feels so wrong
They are asking him to do something they wouldn't expect other potential adopters to do

that is shocking. I was thinking the same about it being a voluntary agency.
I can fully understand why you wouldn't want to until you are absolutely certain you would be accepted. I think that if it were me I would be questioning them and moving to another agency.
It is so horrible isn't it that you feel you can't say anything against them for fear they say no to you.
I would definitely recommend contacting baaf.

snail1973 Tue 12-Nov-13 22:20:27

I am totally shocked by the demand being made of you. This can't be right. Please please seek advice. I am usually a suck it up and do what they say person. But not this time. I massively object and you must find a way to challenge this ultimatum.

Best of luck

KristinaM Wed 13-Nov-13 10:22:15

I think you should get them to put their demand in writing, and to clarify if they ask fertile couples to be sterilised. once you have the letter you should reply, stating that you will not comply and the reasons.

Hopefully, once you request that it be put in writing, someone senior in the agency will realise how inappropriate and possibly discriminatory it is and withdraw it .

Do it I writing because they may then stop your assessment. I don't think you have any right of appeal at this stage ( someone will correct me if I'm wrong ). You will need to then approach another agency and ask them to assess you.

They will request a reference from your first agency and I would expect that they will say that you withdrew from the home study process. Or that there was a mutual agreement that they were not the right agency for you. Or similar . You need the letters as evidence.

If you pull out from this agency without getting it writing, you might find it hard to get another agency to take you on. If it's just your word against theirs, they will ALWAYS believe another agency

wonderinglots Wed 13-Nov-13 13:14:31

Thanks for all your responses.

In answer to a couple of your questions:

Yes, it's a VA

We are right at the end of the process, just awaiting some modifications to our PAR then a panel date. This particular issue was mentioned to us only recently by the Adoption Manager when they were reviewing our PAR (i.e. wasn't brought up during our home study visits by our social worker).

Yes, we were on the verge of getting rid of the sperm. It's the fact that this has now been presented as an ultimatum that is making me hesitate. A - it just seems inherently unfair when compared with other adopting couples and B - I can't see how it proves that we, as a couple, are 'over' having birth children which is the reason being given to us as to why we have to do this. Bear in mind they are not even asking me/us to take contraception and we have been told we may not be asked to even after approval.

We are obviously concerned that if we kick off, we will end up in a position where our application isn't supported, having to start all over again with another agency who may take a dim view that we have been through this once already, without success.

Thanks again for all your responses. It's sometimes hard among all the requests we comply with during the approval process to work out which ones are reasonable and which aren't. Of course all our 'non adopting' friends are horrified at this situation - but then they're horrified at a lot of things prospective adopters have to do. Your responses have made me realise that perhaps this isn't a reasonable request even against the landscape of things prospective adopters are asked to do.

I have emailed BAAF and I will update when I know more.

wonderinglots Wed 13-Nov-13 14:17:57

One more question if I may - to any couples who initially underwent fertility treatment which involved sperm storage and feel able to answer (please feel free to PM me)

Did you still have sperm stored when applying to adopt?

If so, when did you dispose and was it your decision/were you prompted to by your LA/VA?

Many thanks.

eurochick Wed 13-Nov-13 14:27:01

I find this really shocking. The word Orwellian is spot on.

I sometimes lurk in this board while I consider adoption as a future possibility. This kind of thing horrifies me. And I suspect there is an argument that it would infringe your husband's right to family life (Art 8 or 10 of the ECHR). Horrifying.

KristinaM Wed 13-Nov-13 14:33:32

One of the reasons this seems very inappropriate to me is that you don't have to be infertile to adopt. Many people, including myself, have bio children after they adopt . Other have bio kids before they adopt. The only problem usually is During the adoption

Kewcumber Wed 13-Nov-13 15:37:53

it certainly doesn't prove you are "over" having birth children confused Have they never heard of donor sperm or surrogacy?

MrsDeVere Wed 13-Nov-13 15:54:07

Contraception was never mentioned to us.
We are kinship adopters but that shouldn't make a difference.
Of course we didn't ttc whilst fostering and adopting our DS but I don't remember it being bought up in anything more than a cursory way.

I have had two babies since.

It all seems very unfair and unnecessary and I can understand why you feel backed into a corner.

cedar12 Wed 13-Nov-13 16:19:15

Have sent you a message

MyFeetAreCold Wed 13-Nov-13 16:31:07

I think everyone else is right and this is a completely ridiculous and unfair demand to make and it does sound very much like someone either is on a bit of a power trip or has misinterpreted guidelines.

But regardless of the wrongness of the request, if you really were planning on getting rid of it, it might be easier just to go along with their request. It's one thing being right, and it's another getting the outcome you want.

But I am horrified. We were asked to commit to not having a child within 2 years of placement and I'm pretty sure it's in no way legally binding.

Maryz Wed 13-Nov-13 16:36:14

Contraception wasn't insisted on for us either, possibly because we had finished with IVF and were years into infertility.

But then again, I got pregnant when we had only had dd for 8 months blush entirely accidentally, so maybe it should have been. It never occurred to us I could get pregnant.

But I wouldn't have wanted to be sterilised. I'd have been very pissed off if they had tried to make it a condition of adoption.

CheeseandPickledOnion Wed 13-Nov-13 16:40:38

Just so we're clear, I presume the sperm was stored before your husband was infertile? Otherwise surely it's a moot point if you are fertile?

Kewcumber Wed 13-Nov-13 19:59:38

No contraception insistence here either - presumably single women can;t get pregnant. Until a week before I was travelling when I got the famous sex talk.

namechangesforthehardstuff Wed 13-Nov-13 22:09:24

Kew I'm relatively new. Please give details of the infamous sex talk which I have now heard mentioned several times.

And OP sorry for the derailment. What.have BAAF said?

Kewcumber Wed 13-Nov-13 22:10:35

I'm not sure its suitabe for this thread. Will dig it out and give you a link

Kewcumber Wed 13-Nov-13 22:24:08


Kewcumber Wed 13-Nov-13 22:25:00
namechangesforthehardstuff Wed 13-Nov-13 22:53:51

Many thanks. I think it's really nice that they provide such a range of services. Like a one stop family planning shop...

fossil971 Wed 13-Nov-13 22:56:27

Can you ask them to postpone the decision and have it discussed at your approval or matching panel? I would hope the panel (who include a broad range of people) will not uphold this view if they have confidence that you are rational people who are going to put the needs of your adopted child first.

Op I hope you don't mind but I spoke t our social worker about this when we saw her yesterday. She was horrified. said that there was no need whatsoever for it. asked if you could just lie to them! said it is perfectly within your rights to have it and instead could you have a contact drawn up that you would not use it within x many years of adopting.
Don't know if that helps.

RabbitRabbit78 Sat 23-Nov-13 17:52:28

I would give the BAAF helpline a call if you haven't already. They were very helpful to us when we were being told to do something we felt was without justification. In our case BAAF explained it better so we could see the need - however in your case I think they will say that you are being asked to do something unreasonable. LAs and SWs within them can be something of a law unto themselves sometimes and depending on who was talking to us we were given different information/advice at different points. The same goes for people who sit on adoption panels. BAAF know their stuff so should be able to advise.

It took us a very long time to get to approval but we were matched and placed quickly, so please don't lose hope. I know of others IRL who were told ridiculous things, went away and researched and then (gently - and successfully) challenged what had been said. Don't lose your rag with anyone though because they could well interpret it as you not complying with their wishes so not "wanting" it enough.

wonderinglots Sun 05-Jan-14 21:20:40

Hi everyone - I thought I'd come back and give an update.

We spoke to someone at BAAF who was great and told us that the request was unreasonable; further, should it become a 'qualifying determination' in any rejection (either of our application by our agency at this late stage, or at panel), we should appeal via the Independent Review Mechanism, where, they believe, our appeal would be upheld.

We went back to our agency with this who then went to their panel chair, who told them 'it would be unethical' of them to request this of us.

Our agency has essentially now retracted the request, although we have been warned this may be raised at panel as it's become a bit of an 'elephant in the room'. Hey ho.... We know we're right and will, in a very calm way, articulate our argument.

Ironically, this has meant we have been able to go back to thinking about destroying the sperm on our own terms, i.e. without this ultimatum clouding the issue and as a result we are probably going to destroy it as we were before... we know we want to adopt and surrogacy isn't for us.

Anyway - thank you SO much to everyone for your support and ideas, especially Kew and cedar12. Without your input we really wouldn't have had the confidence to challenge our agency on this when the stakes are so high.

TwistAndShout Sun 05-Jan-14 21:24:45

That's really good news and so great to hear an update. Hopefully you can now move forward and make the right decision for you. Good luck.

Devora Sun 05-Jan-14 21:39:07

That is such a relief - it was a ridiculous thing for them to ask and completely unfair to you (and yes, unethical). All fingers crossed that you have a speedy and smooth journey through approval and matching.

sykadelic15 Sun 05-Jan-14 22:07:05

I'm so glad! I read what they asked and couldn't believe that was allowed and agree it should be your choice! I'd never heard you couldn't adopt as well as have birth children.

Excellent news, very glad. I completely understand how you feel and as someone who had fertility treatment and had items stored I would have hated for anyone else to make decisions about it other than us. A victory for common sense and you.

Best of luck.

FamiliesShareGerms Mon 06-Jan-14 07:22:49

That's great news , glad someone saw sense. Good luck with the rest of home study and panel

cedar12 Mon 06-Jan-14 09:15:06

Great news. Good luck with the rest of the process. smile

Lilka Mon 06-Jan-14 09:23:25

Great news! Good luck with panel, I'm sure they'll be fine with it smile

KristinaM Mon 06-Jan-14 09:35:51

Thanks for updating us. Please let us know how things go at panel, if you want to smile

MyFeetAreCold Mon 06-Jan-14 13:12:34

Yes, great news. Well done!

NanaNina Mon 06-Jan-14 13:49:58

I am so glad that this VA has been "brought to book" on this totally unreasonable request. I could barely believe what I was reading and as some of you know I am a retired sw and tm mgr in a Fostering & Adoption team for the LA.

I think it would be totally unacceptable for this issue to be "brought up" in panel as it would be potentially humiliating to you both. I was a panel advisor for our LA when Panels had to be chaired by Independent Chairs and as part of my role I read all the paperwork for panel. If I thought there was something in the assessment that was pertinent but had been fully covered by the assessor I would ask the Panel Chair to ensure that this matter wasn't brought up at Panel. If there were issues that were of concern but had not been fully explained then I would ask the assessing social worker for further explanation/clarification to prevent applicants getting questioned at the Panel.

I don't mean that issues should be swept under the carpet and of course the Panel is not there to "rubber stamp" a sws's recommendations but in view it is extremely difficult for applicants to walk into a room with possibly 15 or so strangers and then have to be asked embarrassing questions.

Could you request that this issue is not raised in the Panel. All it should take is for the Panel Advisor to have a word with the Chair about this "hot potato" and that it is confined to the dustbin where it belongs!

KristinaM Mon 06-Jan-14 16:53:50

I agree completely with nina. It was completely inappropriate that you were asked to do this in the first place and you shouldn't have to worry about it being raised at panel .

Choccyjules Wed 08-Jan-14 14:28:18

Thankyou for your update, am very glad to hear they are backing down on this. Silly people!!

Bananaketchup Wed 08-Jan-14 19:54:57

Thanks for coming back to update, and well done for calling them on this - I hope behind the scenes someone got called to account for such a ridiculous demand. Wishing you an uneventful panel!

wonderinglots Fri 14-Mar-14 21:07:27


I wanted to come back and give one last update.

We stood our ground and refused. We weren't confrontational but we were resolute. Our agency backed down from their request.

We went to panel a few weeks back and it wasn't raised. In fact, the panel chair acknowledged that we'd had a (more than usual) challenging process and that our commitment to adoption was clear. They thanked us for our tenacity.

We were approved unanimously.

I want to thank everyone who contributed to this thread and encouraged us/reassured us.

I can honestly say without your advice and guidance we would have caved in at the request. And doing so would have been totally for the wrong reasons. We will not renew the sperm storage agreement when it comes up for renewal next month. For the right reasons.

Thank you, everyone. You may sometimes think you simply type words on a screen, but they have real impact.


wonderinglots fabulous news.

OneOfOurLilkasIsMissing Fri 14-Mar-14 21:44:33

That's fantastic news

Massive congratulations on your approval!! grin

Kewcumber Fri 14-Mar-14 21:48:05

HUrrah - congratulations.

I do like a happy middle. Look forward to hearing the happy ending.

brilliant news! so pleased for you! totally right that they approved you too.

drspouse Fri 14-Mar-14 21:55:34


cedar12 Fri 14-Mar-14 22:13:13

Great newsgrin

Happiestinwellybobs Sat 15-Mar-14 06:48:55

Brilliant news smile

Daisiemoo Sat 15-Mar-14 07:26:49

Congrats! Xx

FourArms Sat 15-Mar-14 07:53:42

Fantastic news smile

KristinaM Sat 15-Mar-14 08:02:19

Congratulations .i hope you find your child/rent soon .

Thank for coming back to update us

Whatutalkinboutwillis Sun 16-Mar-14 21:30:15

Congrats xxx

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