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Tips for introductions?

(9 Posts)
CatOutOfHell Sun 19-Jun-16 17:53:43

Hi - I've posted in the past but not recently as we've been waiting in the system for a while. Nevertheless, we have now been matched and it is having to move quite quickly due to certain factors. The child we have been matched with is almost one and a half and not very verbal but we were expecting slightly older (just because we've been told that was more likely).

Can I ask if anyone has any intro tips or even just stories that they would share? Good or 'challenging', I'd love both, particularly for younger children as I hadn't really thought about how it would go with what I still consider to be a baby age!

Thanks to anyone who is willing to share! smile

MintyLizzy9 Sun 19-Jun-16 20:02:09

Congrats!!!!

My LO was 23 months but not verbal but it's amazing how quickly you understand them.

Tips for intros would be:

Clear your diary, everyone tells you how exhausting it is but it still came as a shock to me just how knackered I was every night and FC was only a 15 min drive away.

Freeze some dinners, you won't want to cook, you will want food wine and your bed when you get home.

Take lots of pictures, I also wish I'd done a little diary each day, it's all so intense that it feels like a bit of a blur six months on.

Bring some big bags/medium suitcase so the FC can pack with LO things each night and you can bring home. LO will probably have a day at your house as part of intros so it's nice to have some of their own stuff out, plus it's easier to deal with and sort bit by bit before they are home for good.

Clear space, you will need far more storage than you ever thought possible smile

I had a little note pad that I scribbled in when FC shared info around routine etc.

Ask FC what other info they have, for example my sons FC had his FC diary and contact diary that the previous FC and current FC had completed and the contact book was a notepad of notes that FC and birth mum sent back and forth to each other. I now have these and will be keeping them safe for DS.

I called to the supermarket on my way home a couple of evenings to buy things I had seen/used at FC such as snacks and food so that I was all set for his first few days with me without stressing in getting to the shops.

Biggest tip of all is to be kind to yourself. It can be overwhelming at times and although I enjoyed 99.9% of that week some of it was hard going. I sometimes felt like I was under scrutiny, all in my own head I will add FC was lovely but as nice as FC is they are still there in the background. If I had my time again it would be to block out those thoughts and be natural...well as natural as a person can be under those circumstances!

Finally, enjoy enjoy enjoy enjoy getting to know your LO.

I still tear up just thinking about those first few days, life has changed so much and all for the better.

Good luck and enjoy X

CatOutOfHell Sun 19-Jun-16 21:31:20

Ah - that's lovely, and v. helpful! Thank you for replying.

I'm feeling very nervous about how I will feel during it! I've got friends who've adopted and they were so excited all through intros but I'm a born worrier so I think I'll just be panicking about what I've let myself in for!!!

MintyLizzy9 Sun 19-Jun-16 21:46:17

the fun endless worry REALLY begins at the END of intros grin

There was another thread a few days ago about a poster bring matched with a baby, it's worth a read as lots of tips there as well.

Italiangreyhound Sun 19-Jun-16 21:49:49

Ok a few quick tips and I certainly second take lots of photos....

Offer to bring some food, we brought fruit, biscuits, crisps and fruit juice and shared sandwich lunches with them, plus one breakfast.

Try and get lot of nuggets of info and do write important stuff down.

This is a good time to build a god rapport with the foster carers so stay on their good side and try not to find any of it too stressful.

18-month-olds are rarely very verbal. They will get much more verbal, hopefully, as you talk to them.

And I never felt like I was under scrutiny, the foster cares were excellent and made us feel very welcome. We still see them regularyl, about twice a year and consider them a kind of extended family, this is probably not common but is possible and if there is any sense you feel 'judged' give your head a wobble and ignore because the foster carers are not there to judge you and it may be all in your head.

And totally agree it is tiring, stop work in good time, clean house before so you can feel calm and as you will not be home much your house may still be tidy and clean before your little one moved in.

Have you got any items to take for baby?

Italiangreyhound Sun 19-Jun-16 21:52:23

Just so you know we also made/bought a number of things for our son (who was 3 almost 4 when he came so a lot older :
A dvd of things in our area, like the local park and school
A scrapbook of things that he may like
A blanket with his name and date of birth on (which I slept in the bed with so it smelled like me!)
A number of soft toys (3) and a book which we gave to him in the week of introductions - all focused around things he liked - and at different stages, e.g. a teddy the day we met him 'Look after teddy until we see you tomorrowand another toy the day our dd (birth child) met him
Plus a Tomy record-able book.

Don't stress if you have none of these but I would recommend a blanket that smells of you, I slept with the blanket in my bed and then gave it to family finder/social worker to deliver it to the foster family.

CatOutOfHell Sun 19-Jun-16 22:04:09

Thanks for all the tips, Italian! Got a few of those things underway and a few fresh ideas to think about!

I think I'm worrying more about how I'll feel about the little one. How long does it take to feel like they're yours and not just someone you're looking after?! I'm worried about just feeling like I'm not good enough!!!

I will have a look at the baby tips thread too - thanks Minty.

Italiangreyhound Sun 19-Jun-16 22:21:51

Cat please try not to worry it will come.

Start as you mean to go on.

Call each other mummy and daddy to each other in front of new child.

Lots of hugs and tickles if baby is happy.

Once you feel confident, take baby swimming, good for skin to skin.

Fake it until you make it, you love them and they are your world. One day it will be true.

Take lovely photos and remember the early days, they grow SOOOOOOOOOOOO fast.

Huge hugs.

CatOutOfHell Sun 19-Jun-16 22:37:34

Thank you Italian! More wobbling to come in the future, I'm sure! X

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