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Support thread thread for those feeling a bit overwhelmed by the plethora of threads atm

(136 Posts)
Kewcumber Thu 16-Jan-14 09:52:06

Thats it really - do you feel a bit under siege?! I do.

I feel cross that I seem to be constantly defending a system that I think is far from perfect but that on the whole those attacking have no idea of the ramifications of some of what they are suggesting.

I feel sad that once more adoptive parents seem to be considered the people who aren't quite behaving perfectly enough when the reality is that our children are where they are because their birth parents weren't quite perfect enough.

On one thread, it was suggested that if adoptive parents couldn't deal with sharing their child with birth parents that perhaps they weren;t up to the job and that if a child had been with adoptive parents for 10 years that maybe be child should still be returned to the birth parents if it were discovered there had been a mistake.

I cannot say again and again and again that I think even 1 mistake is a tragedy and that we must make every effort to avoid this. And yet every new starts again with the assumption that adoptive parents are "against" any birth parents. They seem to think that we have no empathy or understanding of the horror birth parents feel at having a child removed - like we're not really parents and we wouldn't feel the same horror at having our children removed. My blood runs cold at the thought of it.

I have also in the last year had a bit of a wake up call about how convincing people you know can be when they swear blind that they didn't do something, that their child has mental health problems and made up stories. When it was all proven to be true, I can;t tell you how much it shook me - even nice "normal" people do dreadful things to their children and it amazes me that social workers see this all the time and still manage (on the whole) to give parents a fair hearing.

I'd love to be able to have a sensible conversation about how many times parents fight and continue to fight for their children and the children are still subsequently adopted - I think that would help me quantify in my own mind how fair this figure of "thousands" thats been bandied around is, because I'm fed up of not being able to refute it for lack of evidence that that doesn;t seem to stop anyone else.

It's wearing and I'm getting sick of it and I've got work to do.

Here endeth the first rant.

Choccyjules Thu 16-Jan-14 16:50:13

Marking place for if it all gets too much; up to now it just feels like it's 'adoption in the spotlight week'. Actually it's helpful for me as everything you experienced folk write on the subject is internalised for a rainy day, whether in our corner of MN or on the chat/tv threads smile

(Is this where I mention DH and I stayed up far too late last night discussing the children we were hoping to parent as the assesment is all getting rather exciting? No?!)

Kewcumber Thu 16-Jan-14 16:55:08

You're not a coward zoo and you know you are very welcome here hiding in the corner away from the madness. Any parent who can say "it is better for my child to have a happy life away from me rather than suffer the pain of another move" gets my vote for hero of the year. thanks

I have no idea if I could do this for DS. Of course I like to think I could but I haven't been tested and I hope I'll never know what it takes to make that kind of decision.

And you should note that my thread didn't say "for adopters" just for those that want a refuge from the madness, anyone else can fuck right off.

MrsBW Thu 16-Jan-14 16:58:16

Hear hear Kew

Zoo thanks

weregoingtothezoo Thu 16-Jan-14 17:03:18

Thanks kew I hadn't realise I'd repeated my essentially "excuse me for existing" line in there twice. I do know I am welcome and I would imagine all members of the adoption triangle have found it a very tough week.

I wonder if I should watch it rather than be fearful of it and have guessed bits through snippets that I've read without realising.

I definitely agree with the black and white thing. Neither adoptive parents, OR social workers, or birth parents, are either. We all exist in the grey that is real life.

Kewcumber Thu 16-Jan-14 17:05:58

I haven't watched it - don't intend to. You know sometimes you're allowed to choose the thing that doesn't cause you pain?

DrankSangriaInThePark Thu 16-Jan-14 17:06:51

I'm going to quietly sneak in and give you all flowers and wine then quietly sneak out again.

This too shall pass.

Many of you on the mad threads have shown a dignity and love for your children that the crackpot brigade wouldn't know if it smacked them round the chops. x

TwistAndShout Thu 16-Jan-14 17:25:23

Very well said Kew, thank you for starting this thread. I don't post often but find the adoption pages a tremendous support and agree that we seem to be under siege this week!

It's scary how many people have such a simplistic idea of adoption. It's by far my biggest challenge (and I've always enjoyed a challenge!).

I also find it alarming how easily people are taken in by such a one sided programme. It was shocking in its bias and yet people have taken it at face values, very worrying. (Panorama)

It's lovely to have a thread to retreat to!

Happiestinwellybobs Thu 16-Jan-14 17:29:28

I'll take the wine thank you.

I am a naughty adopter too. Although we said yes to the first profile we were shown, we ticked 'no' to most things on the list given to us by our SW as we felt we couldn't cope with many of them. We have a spare room, DD was young, gorgeous and of course a girl!! From the other thread, it's clear I couldn't be a worse person grin

Italiangreyhound Thu 16-Jan-14 17:33:27

Kew .....well..... you are pretty scary! wink

Kewcumber Thu 16-Jan-14 17:33:47

Out of interest did anyone adopt a child who they thought was pug ugly?! I can remember when Angelina Jolie was getting it in the neck for adopting a cute little baby (conveniently ignoring the fact that she was adopting a 3 year old asian boy who have to be one of the harder to place groups internationally) - I thought at the time "How many ugly 3 year old aren't cute?!"

How many children aren't cute? Surely they don't generally start getting "interesting" looking until they're at least 5.

Not that it matters because DS was as cute as a button and I still was horrified at how little I felt for him initally.

Italiangreyhound Thu 16-Jan-14 17:39:46

I think the whole 'cute' thing is a bit of a red herrig. We saw pictures of a child we thought looked 'cute' and then read up and felt we could not cope so even if they were cute they were not for us. Saw another who was 'cute' in some, not in others and felt we could cope. I mean cute is not what you base your decision on. I thought Connor in the 'Finding mum and dad' was one of the cutest little boys I have ever seen. Cute was never a criteria on the list we got to see!!!

I hope those little ones get familes but they are the tip of the ice berg, everyone wants them to find families because we know about them (me included!). But there are so many more.

I think adoption, fostering and all the whole kit and caboudle might be in need of some sort of compassionate overhaul, I wonder if it will come, what it will be and whether or not the 'authorites' will seek to speak to adopters, foster cares and most all people who have been through the adoptive process as children (plus those of us 'stuck' part way through) to get input?? (pig flies over roof!)

Lilka Thu 16-Jan-14 17:43:04

I'm partly a good adopter because:

I adopted two older children with significant needs, and I did a pretty open adoption with DD2's birth mum and loads of sibling visits with every sibling of every child it was a good idea to meet with

On the other hand, I'm a bad adopter because:

I refused to consider babies when I adopted the first two times (yeah, isn't it funny how people castigate people who only want a 0-2 but not those who only want a child aged 6-10? It's the same principle people!)

I cope with my DD2's reunion but I'm not over the moon about it and refuse to pretend to be

I was only approved for a girl when I adopted DD1 and later DD2

Also, on the one hand I'm evil and don't care about birth parents because I believe in the principle of adoption without parental consent

On the other hand I'm a 'bleeding heart liberal' because I always try find empathy and compassion for people who have lost their children, even when they are, gasp, addicted to drugs or have 11 children or commit crime etc etc

Kew well MY children are the most beautiful children in the world, that's for sure

The rest of you probably have the second, third etc, most beautiful children in the world

grin wink

prumarth Thu 16-Jan-14 17:53:20

Thanks for the thread Kew - I've found these other threads really upsetting and all the "child snatcher" / "picky adopter" press at the moment finally got to my husband last night. He was so upset - his view is that birth mums often say "I don't care what I'm having as long as they are healthy" whereas he is treated as being "picky" when he can't cope with the idea of dealing with a child exhibiting sexual behaviour after being abused, or a child who never attaches to us because of their trauma. I know it's just people not knowing the process but I've found the judgemental tone so hard to hear particularly here where I've felt very safe and supported. I know I need a thicker skin but it just kicked off at a bad time for me after we spent a day with SW's discussing the many ways a child can be traumatised and the behaviours we can expect to see then people commented that I'm wanting a perfect child that sings edelweiss! Do people really think that's what we do???

Italiangreyhound Thu 16-Jan-14 18:22:21

Prumath try not to let it get you down, people can only say 'I don't mind what I get' because they know usually pretty much 'what' or rather 'who' they will get. It is frustrating and hard but hang on in there.

prumarth Thu 16-Jan-14 18:25:19

Thanks Italian. Opened the wine so feeling better will commence imminently!

StupidMistakes Thu 16-Jan-14 18:35:07

I am a birth parent, and I admit I wasn't perfect, but I also will say the system did fail me, however I do not blame my sons new parents for that, I am, and will remain eternally grateful to them for looking after my son, and showing him unconditional love and giving him a safe and settled environment to grow up in, and quite possibly financially more than I ever could and for giving him a dad that he can look up to and be proud of.

I am sorry if sometimes it doesn't sound that I am grateful, however I am, I wouldn't expect my sons new parents to hand him back to me if there had been a mistake if he was happy, healthy and settled where he was, there would have to be a lot of give and take, even if a court ordered him to come home, I would want his new parents to have a MASSIVE part in his life, because they have after all, been there for him day and night for the last 6 and half months.

Maybe Im not every birth parent, but the bottom line is it always has to be what is best for the child involved, and cutting ties from those that unconditionally love that child I don't see as being best for a child. and

StupidMistakes Thu 16-Jan-14 18:42:22

sorry, dumb computer and its the childs needs that have to come first, as hard as that may be emotionally for the birth parents, we have to let go.

I didn't hold onto my child and not let him go when the foster carer came to collect him at final goodbye contact, I cuddled him as I always did <maybe a little tighter and a few seconds longer> told him I loved him to the stars and back, and never forget that and then took him to the foster carer and let him go.

For me those few seconds I savoured, they were the last seconds I would spend with my child, so they meant the world to me, and I appreciated that the foster carer told me when she dropped him not to worry, to take as long as I needed to in order to say goodbye so it wasn't rushed.

Didn't mean it didn't hurt any less though. But adopters aren't baby stealing monsters, they are taking on your child and doing all the things you should have been able to do but for what ever reason weren't and in my eyes that makes them amazing people.

Italiangreyhound Thu 16-Jan-14 18:49:42

SM (I CANNOT use your name you are anything but stupid) you have brought tears to my eyes. I sincerely hope you will one day see you son again. I hope you can move on with your life so that when and if he ever again is there in your life he can be so proud of you too, I am sure he will be. You are an inspiration.

Please I suggest you keep a journal of your thoughts and feelings. I don't want to get your hopes up but maybe (just maybe) one day you will see him again and he can hear how your journey has been without him but thinking of him.

I sincerely hope the couple will do a fabulous job of bringing him up and that you will be able to take comfort from that.

Your love and kindness are clear and your desire to put your son's needs first shine through.

Please do record your thoughts and I hope one day the system will work better for every single one of us.

Bless you.

Moomoomie Thu 16-Jan-14 19:05:56

Mistakes..... What a wonderful emotional post. I've read many of your posts and feel so humble. You have always put your son and his needs first.
I wish you a very happy future.

Lilka Thu 16-Jan-14 19:11:54

SM and zoo thanks

Thank you for having the courage to post here

Kewcumber Thu 16-Jan-14 19:28:39

I am sorry if sometimes it doesn't sound that I am grateful I don;t think you should feel grateful. I've said it before and I'm happy to say it again, it has been the biggest privilege of my life being allowed to parent my child.

Inthebeginning Thu 16-Jan-14 19:36:17

thank you so much for this thread.
It's actually been stressing me out a bit. I totally feel undersieged. I know that everyone has an opinion but it's people having an opinion that they don't understand that winds me up/frustrates me.

MrsBW Thu 16-Jan-14 19:39:35

It's the hoiking till they get a massive wedgy of judgy pants that winds me up/frustrates me.

StupidMistakes Thu 16-Jan-14 19:59:10

Yep and the generalisation of birth parents being bad people and adoptive parents stealing children and not letting them communicate with their birth family etc.

Reality is every situation is different as is every child. I am grateful though to my ds's new parents and yes they have got a major privilege which I wont lie I would rather have had to see him grow up, however I wasn't in a position to be able to, so therefore I am appreciative that someone else can and will take on my child at three years old and treat them as their own and one of their family.

I hope his new parents will keep up the contact as I know I will, but every story has two sides, and there are birth parents that are difficult to communicate with and don't want the best for their children, but some of us genuinely do, and I am sure the adopters are the same, you didn't do anything, and regards to social services making mistakes or not, I have nothing to feel bitter towards his new mum and dad <and yes it does still feel a little weird saying those words> he has two mums now, me, who gave birth to him and loved him as much as she does and his new mum who will bring him up and be there to wipe away his tears when needed.

Hels20 Thu 16-Jan-14 21:21:34

SM and Zoo - please feel free to chip in on posts if you think you have something to say. I have yet to meet BM - but meeting is imminent. I know it will be very emotional and I hope she doesn't hate me and DH.

One thing that does bother me about adoption (well, my adoption) is whether BM was ever told in plain English and directly by SS: "if you don't do X then you will lose your son"

The only good thing to have come out from all the traffic on the threads that Kew was referring to was that I have now read up on that MP and Ian Joseph. I cannot believe the MP hasn't been disowned by his party.

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