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Adopting with 2 bc(10 Posts)
We have 2 BC 5 & 8 and we would love to add to our family and just mulling over the idea of adoption. We (well DH but with genuinely good medical/practical reasons that I've long since acknowledged) dismissed the idea of more BC after DC2 arrived but we still feel there is room in our family for another child - younger than dc2 but not set on baby/toddler. Hopefully someone here can answer a few initial questions:
1. Can we adopt with BC & no medical reason for not having more BC?
2. Would I be able to continue working PT?
3. DH has a criminal record (DUI) - deal breaker?
4. Will we be putting unnecessary stress on BC in pursuit of our own desire for another child who may have some/many additional needs?
I am sure someone with BC will come along shortly, but in the meantime:
1) There is no reason - but be prepared that you will be pushed on this, as it is not THAT usual to adopt if you can have more BC. The LA/VA who are assessing you will also expect you to use birth control once you have been approved (maybe before) and for a good year or so after the child comes to live with you.
Please also note that with 2 BC, how LA/VA view placing a new child with you increase your "risk" assessment - i.e. risk that something might go wrong. So, if it is a childless couple adopting, the risk of it going wrong (I think this is how it works) is x 2. For a couple with 1 birth child/1 adopted child, the risk of it going wrong is x 3. For you, it will be x 4. There are lots of people on this board who adopted when they had 1 BC - not sure I can think of anyone off hand who has adopted when they had 2 BC. But that shouldn't be a barrier. And really, it would be no different from people adopting when they already have 2 adopted children (and some people on this board have adopted 3 separate times)!
I think what I am trying to say (rather ineloquently!) is that there is no reason if you have 2 BC but it might make placing a child with you that much harder - and it might take slightly longer to have a child placed with you than if you were a childless couple or had 1 BC.
Also your BC will be interviewed and asked about how they feel - so bear this in mind!
2) Yes - but you will have to take time off to allow child to settle - at a minimum 6 months (I know some adopters only took 3 or 4 months off but the LA/VA will want to know that you are committed enough and are able to take 6 months off to help the child settle).
If you aren't able to take any time off - I am not sure you will get very far with an assessment.
3) I don't know for sure, but I strongly doubt it would preclude you from adopting. Especially if it was a long time ago. I would imagine they would want to explore that you now take a serious attitude to drinking and your DH would never drink and drive again. It would be important that you are upfront about this from the outset (they do do criminal checks - and if you have lived abroad, they will also want a criminal check done in that country too!) and prove that your DH is remorseful and realises what a stupid/dangerous thing he did. I wouldn't try and justify it ("I was only over by a small amount/it was only down a country lane") - just say that you know it was a mistake and would never do it again.
4) Very possibly. Someone else will come along I am sure - it will affect your BC, children in care often have a lot of problems (not always evident from paperwork that you read) and you will have to divert a lot of your time to them, initially at least. It will put stress on your family - I am sure.
Hope this helps - and good luck! You also need to work out whether you want to go through a Voluntary Agency or a Local Authority.
The only criminal records that rule you out competently are offenses against children. Everything else taken on a case by case basis. So if it's a long time ago and a one off you stand a better chance .
Re bio kids -SS will be a bit suspicious of you, because most families who seek to adopt for altruistic reasons drop out. Either because they didn't know how hard it would be or how damaged the children might be . So you will have to work extra hard to convince them .
You will also have to convince them that a couple who both work and already have two kids will have the time and energy to devote to a child who WILL have some additional needs.
Unless you are black .the system is different for black families because they are in such high demand , as many waiting children are of mixed heritage .
Hels -I think most of the adopters here who have 3adopted kids have bio siblings. Can't think of anyone who has done 3 separate adoptions .id not know of anyone in RL either ( in the uk) .
TBH I think the stress of 3 assessments would push anyone over the edge
Thanks Kristina - I am sure you are right - I am thinking of the person who recently posted about doing it all again and was she mad to think of a 4th child - but maybe she only had 2 or maybe she had 3 but 2 were siblings! (Not Lilka - I know Lilka's 2 youngest are siblings.)
There was that couple featured in "A Home for Maisie" - they went through it all 3 times at least!
Just thought I would add we have done 8 separate adoptions (none siblings). Must be honest the more we had the easier the process became.
Yes we are bloody mad
Oh goodness, Jim and Sue Clifford are incredible. 9 children, 4 seperate adoption processes. Sibling group of 2, sibling group of 2, sibling group of 4 (!), then "Maisie"! All aged between 4 and 10 when adopted. And on top of that, according to an article I read at the time of broadcast, Jim works long 12 hour days, and Sue also works part time as a special needs teacher on top of being a methodist preacher
Huge admiration and respect for that
I have to say, the idea of doing the entire process again doesn't really put me off. It's not fun, but it's not horrendous either, and if you look at what happens at the end...it's just a no brainer to me that you plough ahead and get through it
We had 4BC when we adopted DD4. Just want to say that all the BC just accepted DD4 without any problems and see her as mush part of the family as they are.
We have only one BC and are currently in the approval process. We have no (known) medical reasons for not having more BC so maybe similar in that way.
The 'adoption by choice' thing never really has been a problem in the approval process so far. We were asked, of course, why we chose adoption, but our answers always seemed to be convincing enough to take us further.
Regarding the matching considerations, we are obviously always thinking 'what would this mean for DS', so whereas we are quite open to 'mild' versions of many things, 'moderate to severe' versions of equally many things do make us tick the 'no' box. (E.g. hearing impairment that needs hearing aid ok, but deafness and having to communicate by sign and needing special schools, not ok). This means that we are only really willing/able to adopt a child who has relatively minor issues, and is thus 'desirable'. A couple of SWs told us early on, that a few years ago they would not have agreed to assess us, as they would want to 'keep' these desirable children for childless couples who were turning to adoption as a last resort, whereas we already had a child so were less 'needy'. However things seem to have changed in recent years and they do now assess many people, even if they are after a healthy white baby with few issues, and have BC already.
That said, the reality is that 'issues' are part and parcel of adopting, and the choosier you are, the longer you may have to wait for a match.
In reply to 4) this is a question we ask ourselves too. I think it is important to recognise that you are having another child (be it by birth or by adoption) for your own sake, not in some way for the sake of your child(ren) (as in, providing a sibling for them or such). We do weigh how a new child's needs would affect our existing child, and would say no if we would project that an AC would significantly limit his life opportunities. However, a child having special/additional needs, can mean just the opposite: It can provide opportunities to grow emotionally, make you stronger, make you more tolerant and empathic and accepting of difference, so I'm hoping that we can achieve the right kind of mindset to see things in this way, rather than focusing on the limitations and restrictions.
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