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Same sex adoption

(27 Posts)
honeywebb Sat 28-Nov-15 22:06:23

Hi, me and my partner are starting on the adoption journey. Has anyone on this forum been through this process? I appreciate the process for same sex couples is the same but I'm also aware there may be some differences. Any advice???

MooseyMouse Sun 29-Nov-15 05:34:37

Hi. You might want to check out New Family Social - national LGBT adoption/fostering charity.

Shop around for an agency you're happy with. Lots of LGBT people expect to be discriminated against and some are. However, 7% of the adoptions in England last year were to same sex couples.

Really good luck with it all.

Hels20 Sun 29-Nov-15 07:34:19

There are quite a few same sex adopters that are on this board so am sure one of them will be along.

But I can't see why there would be any differences. They might be a bit less hung up on you having had to explore and exhaust other ways of having your family (in as much as for a gay couple - it's not quite so easy) but that would only be a good thing.

Devora Sun 29-Nov-15 16:40:47

Lots of same sex adopters on here - well, a few of us anyway smile. The main difference is if you encounter a homophobic social worker, which sadly does still happen occasionally. In our case it meant that it took a long time for us to be matched, even though we were approved for a child of mixed black Caribbean/white UK heritage (apparently this was the demographic where there is greatest unmet need of potential adopters). This meant that we ended up being matched through the National Adoption Register. But we managed to adopt the coolest kid in the world, so turned out okay smile

Devora Sun 29-Nov-15 16:41:38

I should add: happy to advise but how we can we best help?

GirlsWhoWearGlasses Sun 29-Nov-15 17:53:03

Another one here who adopted as part of a same-sex couple. We did encounter some difficulties along the way which were definitely related to us being two women, but we got there in the end and it was so worth it. It can't have been that bad, as we're about to start the whole thing again. As Devora said though, did you have specific questions?

honeywebb Sun 29-Nov-15 21:06:52

Thanks for your responses. We are two women and are in the very beginning stages of adoption. We've been to an information evening and the SW is coming to visit in a week. We've read lots of the recommended books and watched a lot of tv but nothing specific to same sex adoption. I just wondered if there were any tricky parts of the process that related to your sexuality. I hope not but I worry that they might ask how we will make sure any adopted child doesn't lack a male role model......

Kr1stina Sun 29-Nov-15 21:21:48

They might well ask that . And do you have an answer ?

honeywebb Sun 29-Nov-15 21:26:28

I do have an answer which would be that the issue would be the same if a child lived with a single woman or single man. Many many children grow up without parents of both genders in their house and I don't consider it a problem. I just wondered if it was something that people had come up against.

Hels20 Sun 29-Nov-15 22:15:02

I'm not sure the SWs would like that sort of response. Is there not an uncle, a good male friend of yours, granddads, that would take a reasonably active interest in your child?

You will need to do a "support network".
Hopefully some of those people are male. And if you could - maybe give a male as a referee (eg a cousin, brother, friend).

I think that will reassure the SWs

Kr1stina Sun 29-Nov-15 22:17:27

They would probably ask a single adopter . its something that many single bio parents think about as well. So I recommend you have an answer thought out. Even if you don't think it's an issue, a panel might.

Kr1stina Sun 29-Nov-15 22:18:45

Sorry x posted with hels

And of course she's right . As is Kew

Devora Sun 29-Nov-15 23:11:23

Yes, I think they like to hear that you have considered this seriously and are taking steps to ensure child has access to good male role models - we pointed to extended family and friends and chose some male godparents.

They may also ask about homophobic bullying, and ask if you think it's fair to give the child one more thing to have to negotiate in the playground.

Sometimes they take the birth parents' views into account, and not take forward a match if parents are homophobic. They shouldn't do this, but it happens.

Devora Sun 29-Nov-15 23:16:42

I also suspect personal appearance may make a difference - I don't scare the horses so had an easy ride with the social workers I met. The ones I didn't meet - the child's social workers - not so easy. But you usually don't know if you're facing homophobia - people rarely say - and of course so much of matching is smoke and mirrors and you're never really sure what's going on. Best for your mental wellbeing to be a bit zen and believe that things happen for the best, otherwise matching is massively stressful!

honeywebb Mon 30-Nov-15 07:03:54

Thank you all. We both have father who would be involved. My dad is already an active grandparent to my nieces. One of our referees is a male friend of ours and my partner has more male friends than female. No brothers sadly! Thank you all.

Kewcumber Mon 30-Nov-15 09:33:10

My dad is already an active grandparent to my nieces I would go with this as the simple answer if you're asked the male role model question, and you probably will be, it was raised a lot in my case and not just by social workers!

In fact it did amuse me to be asked by one person about how I was going to provide a "positive male role model" when she'd not long finished telling me how her husband had ducked out of so many holidays, parent evenings and sports events and worked so late every night that her teenage son had made a very sarcastic comment to his father "how would you know - you were never here?!" when discussing how something was when they were small!

I would also emphasise that "good male role model" also involves you (and your partner) treating men with respect and not doing that muttering under the breath "men are so useless" thing that we all fall into now and again.

The reality of my DS's life is that the majority of ideal male role models he has had have been dreadful - unreliable, inconsistant and in some cases outright rejection (not helpful) so an engaged grandfather who has a track record is great (does he hire himself out?)

arielmanto Mon 30-Nov-15 11:19:53

devora the image of you not scaring the horses made me chuckle. same-sex approved prospectives here - and we both look quite feminine which although shouldn't make a difference at all, definitely did at some points with individuals assessing us. we did get asked the inevitable role model question at panel - but I have 4 sisters, all with male partners, as well as an engaged father, so it was just a routine response.

Kr1stina Mon 30-Nov-15 17:50:47

I have to tell you that Devora is in fact gorgeous .

Although I know that's beside the point really. It seems ridiculous that lesbian adopters have to be fem when I assume that hetero women adopters can be as butch as they like .

Or maybe not? I wonder if prospective adopters ever get turned down for not acting out a particular gender role ?

I know one straight couple who found it hard to get a match because the man was going to be the main carer. They were turned down for so many matches, eventually they had to change their plans. That was about 20 years ago, hopefully things have moved on since then .

Kewcumber Mon 30-Nov-15 19:48:26

I know one couple who gave up when several months into home study the social worker had a meeting with them and said that she believed that her DH of 25 years was gay.

It was bizarre, they rang me for advise. The problem was that they either had to insist on being taken to panel and appealing or give up then. She couldn't bear the thought that her DH would have to go through that and gave up.

It was one of the most bizarre situations I've come across. It seems that the rationale was that he was very quiet. confused

Kewcumber Mon 30-Nov-15 19:48:29

oops - advice

GirlsWhoWearGlasses Mon 30-Nov-15 20:11:12

I'm sure you will be asked the role model question. Having seen how differently DD interacts with her close male relatives, I do think it's a fair thing to raise. Fortunately, you already have a good answer in the two grandfathers. We are lucky to have an array of lovely men who take an active interest in DD kicking about, but we have consciously ensured that she does build those relationships.

I agree with others that it's often the hard to quantify matching decisions that throw up more issues.

honeywebb Mon 30-Nov-15 21:17:10

I do think its a fair thing to raise and there's both of our Dads as well as loads of friends. I do appreciate how important it is.

I don't think we look too stereotypical so if that's something SW worry about we should be OK!!!

Any book recommendations especially for same sex couples? We've started to read the general ones - No Matter What etc.

pullofthemoon Tue 01-Dec-15 21:08:05

Is adoption something you have definitely decided upon, or are you exploring routes to parenthood?

honeywebb Tue 01-Dec-15 22:07:18

We are totally sure and have never explored or wished to explore other options.

Devora Tue 01-Dec-15 22:18:53

I'm going to stop batting my eyelashes at Kristina long enough to recommend you visit the New Family Social website for book recommendations. They do a pretty good magazine too smile

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