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A direct card from birth parent to ds, any thoughts?(21 Posts)
Hi, ds has been with us over 6 months (is 4) and we have been very lucky to receive a card and letter from birth mum, to us the adoptive parents.
We are hoping to meet birth parents sometime and I am wondering whether to suggest that, if they want to, they include a card for ds when they write to us, either as well as for us or probably instead of for us.
I would not suggest it to be birthday or Christmas related because then if they fail to do it one year it will not be there for him but if it is just a 'thinking of you' kind of card then it would not be tied in to anything.
This is not something that has been suggested to us by social services, who are bowing out now as adoption order is granted, but I guess I feel strange that we have a beautiful card from birth parents but it is not addressed to ds so how do I show it to him? He is learning to read and would know his own name was not on it, would that seem strange to him?
Just really wanting advice, please?
I feel I may be opening a hornets nest and to stick to what has been agreed would be easier but my views on letterbox contact have developed so much that I now feel quite differently (e.g. positively) about it. This is my view now, now that I understand more what is behind it and have received the first correspondence petty much on time.
I'm not sure. Letterbox is in theory between the birth parents and the adoptive ones, not the birth parents and child, though our eldest has always been involved in ours.
I would probably not show the card to your DS this time as it serves no purpose.
Our girls do get cards for their B-days and Xmas which arrive with letterbox and we hold back. To me that makes more sense than random other cards, but then we have been lucky that our contact has been regular and consistent so that probably affects my views. Cards also do require a degree of organisation from the BPs which might not be able to be consistently achieved.
We've always shared letters, which has been OK up to now, but there is something in the latest letter I don't really want to show DD2 at the moment, so maybe it would have been better if we'd gone down the 'read out relevant bits' route rather than 'here is the letter to read'.
DD1 is also disengaging from contact, she's stopped writing her own letters, and almost decided not to read the latest one.
Sorry, not much help.
I wouldn't jump into offering more unless there is a good reason.
Thanks sanders, wise words. I so much want it all to be 'good' but I know the reality is that the kind of starts in life our kids have had means it is just not straight forward, usually!
I guess it may be different if your ds had memories of BP but my d's, now eight really hates the idea of BP sending us anything and vice versa and doesnt want ' stranger's' having pictures of her.. We stopped letterbox recently at sw advice. Also don't underestimate how different you may feel about contact in a year or so. At six months I didnt really feel d's was truly mine, though didn't recognise that at the time, so didnt mind meeting BP, giving photos and letters etc. Fast forward to 2 years in and I really disliked
sending photos and info to people who are strangers, it felt disloyal to ds who is a very private character. Is strongly advise not to push for more contact at this stage, it's very hard to undo. I wish we had never agreed to photos as they can't be taken back. Good luck making the right decision for you all.
Thanks Cosmos our son does remember his birth parents. They aren't strangers to him and I suppose in a funny way I want to help to preserve a positive attitude in him towards them.
It is very early days for us Cosmos, we are only just over 6 months in and you are right I may feel differently in a few years time.
I think I will wait and see how it all pans out.
We have not met them yet but the plan is that we will at some point soon. I want to do it but I know that it is complex, so thanks for giving your perspective as someone further along thank me.
I wouldn't, has it might be unreliable. We got a letter the first year and met birth mum and I really thought she would continue to write. Nothing since
Thanks Disneygirl lovely to hear from you.
I am rethinking it a bit, as I know it is early days. The card and letter has thrown me somewhat and made me quiet confused but I need a clear head on, so thanks for your input.
I wouldn't show him anything at his age. I can't see how it would have a positive impact upon his emotional well being.
You're a very considerate lady.
I wanted to buy a gift for when I met the adoptive parents but didn't know what if I'm honest. I always address my letter to all of them and I am always glad to hear how they are as well. Cards I am not allowed to send, social services were very clear in regards to those but I am allowed to send drawings
I don't think it's ever to early to let a child know that there are other people that care about them tbh. Whether you use first names or birth mummy or tummy mummy especially if you are sure they will remain in contact.
I think it is positive for a child to know that there birth family do still care bout them but every child is different and what is good for one isn't for another
I will also say I met the adoptive parents a year ago and have written twice since (6 monthly letters) my next one I should receive is February
It's a fine balancing act this contact thing and preserving the memories of BF for our children. We are now at the stage of having to tell our older DS more specific reasons and details as to why he was removed from BM (at 12 years) he is asking if he could meet other members of the BF and this may not be safe for him. I'm afraid I have never painted too rosy a picture of his life with BM. We have always said she cared for them in her own way and to the best of her ability. She never continued letter box after the first, very odd letters we received for each child which I may never show them until they are adults. I really would keep to the agreed letterbox I would always keep all the letters and cards in a special memory box for an appropriate time to show LO when he's a bit older.
Thanks Quitelikely for your kind words.
I was just thrown, a lovely card, a lovely letter and I wanted to share it with ds. But I know it is way more complicated than that. He really is very settled with us in such a short time! I keep waiting for the shit to hit the fan and it has not so far! Fingers crossed!
Thanks Miracle. He knows they love him. I have told him. It's just regarding ...especially if you are sure they will remain in contact. I don't know that yet. It's all so new, if they keep writing I will feel more confident it will all work out well with letter box. Before I adopted I was probably very anti contact but I now see letter box as something positive for us and for ds. But I know it is not the same for everyone.
Thanks Doubletrouble yes, I am being cautious. As time goes on little things come to light but I am hopeful we do have a full picture of ds's life and I will always give him a truthful, age relevant view of life, not a rosy picture but also making sure he knows the positives. They did love him, but they could not look after him, if they could have he would not now be with us. All I want is to do the best for him and part of that is giving him a view of his birth family that is truthful.
It is helpful here to talk to all kinds of people, from birth parents to fellow adopters and people who have kinship care. It is helpful to hear from people furtherer down the line from us.
I would be all too easy to be swayed by one day, one word, one letter, one experience and forget this is for the long haul, it is life time's commitment and I don't want to give my little lad too much to think or worry about.
But Miracle be assured, he does know he was and is loved. Because it is true. What a massive task to give our little ones the skills to piece together and understand all that has gone before. Thank goodness for you lovely people who offer support.
Can I also mention that the paper work from social services will be mainly negative. They don't write miracle couldn't protect her son or herself due to years of mental emotional physical and sexual abuse. They write miracle failed to protect her child.
On paperwork I am a monster. In real life I was a young woman struggling to come to terms with what had happened to me trying to look after a toddler and had no support.
I know I failed my son. But I don't love him any less than any other parent loves there child.
Contact for me is the only thing left I can do for my miracle and to me that is a blessing
Miracle in our case, or rather in our son's case, it is true that we do understand the reasons behind why our son's birth family could not really care for him. So in some cases the history is presented. I know we will not really know the full extend of the pressures and sorrows and lives of the family members who have impacted on our little one's life but we do have (I think) a realistic understanding. I really do understand why some people's lives turn out how they do, and the facts have not been withheld from us. Exactly how we will explain all this to our son in an age appropriate way, I am not sure, but that is the task we signed up for.
We know you are not a monster, Miracle, we really do. There is a lot of information out there for adoptive parents and I think many of us are given (over time) the tools to begin to understand.
But that is not the same as walking in your shoes.
Live your life now, to the best of your ability, for a future free from as much of the negatives from the past as possible.
Unfortunately for me some of the things were so fresh or so deeply buried that I didn't disclose them to social services, so the adoptive parents have no way of knowing what happened.
Since then I've done counselling. Acknowledged it happened.
I'm trying to move forward in positive steps. All be it baby steps. But each step isa postive and so long as I am moving forward and working to reach my goals, I am happy with that. Bit by bit I will get there.
My past will always have shaped the person I am. But I now have one of two choices. Let it ruin the rest of my life, or get back up brush myself down and be stronger than before.
Miracle that is a very good point (that all the truth may not have been revealed) and I had not considered the birth parents would have kept some scary stuff back. Thank you, it is humbling to realise again how little I do know (I mean that very genuinely). Of course we only know a little bit.
If you are not religious, please ignore but the passages is 1 Corinthians 13: 8-10 and 12 and 13 talk about knowing only in part and about love. 'The Voice' version is nice but I love 'The Message' version best. It gives some hope that things will change. Please do excuse if you are not at all religious. PLEASE feel free to report this post and have it removed if you prefer.
1 Corinthians 13: 8-10 and 12 and 13 The Message version of The Bible...
8-10 Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.
12 We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!
13 But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.
Thank you Italian. I think that " loving extravagantly " is what most adoptive parents do
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