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Home study-what's it all about?(13 Posts)
So I know that the home study includes a safety check for smoke alarms, no sharp corners, no blind cords hanging down, safety covers on plugs etc
I also know that sw will talk to us together and separately.
I believe there homework to do but what is it?
Is there anything I could do now so that I am prepared?
It's talking through your own childhood, your approach to parenting, how you would deal with all sorts of situations, your lifestyle...pretty much everything.
You could prepare a rough timeline of important events in your life, a family tree and have a think about what kind of support you have in place and from who. Also think about who you want to be your referees.
Best of luck
We have already given our referees and we know that they are being filled out and sent back as we speak. Added our family tree to our initial application as it was brought up at training as well as our support network. So I guess it should just be the childhood stuff next then. Medical are booked and pvg forms sent off.
Still waiting to be appointed our social worker which seems to be taking forever.
You could look into your home and make it 'child' friendly. You can't really childproof it yet if you are not sure of the of the child but making it a welcoming place for children could be something you do. You could make sure your garden is OK (if you have one). Find some help on line. It's obvious really but you need to remember - ponds - bad, even if secure, poisonous and sharp scratchy plants - bad, fences - good, grass - good etc etc.
Make yourself some lists, e.g. local schools, local parks etc.
As GirlsWhoWearGlasses says, support, this is so helpful even if you never end up using it.
Ask if you want to know more.
Do you have experience with kids?
Do you have clutter?
Please, please de-clutter, tidy what needs tidying, do those little jobs you need to do!
... are not sure of the age of the child
Yes we have loads experience with kids, my sister has 5bc and 1ac that I have helped with since only a few weeks old, feeding,changing,bathing. I enrolled them in school, dropped them off picked up etc. They are grown up now and having kids of their own. I have 19 nieces and nephews and 4 great nephews with another on the way lol
I'm 39 now. My partner 49.
We have decided on a girl between 3 + 6 years old.
We have emptied all cupboards and drawers and got rid of anything We no longer need or want so no clutter. We are fairly organised anyway.
Garden is spot on and has even won awards, that has been given approval by sw already. Although we have a gravel area we are thinking of turning back to grass for a play area.
We know the local schools, parks nd soft play areas. Keen walkers so we also kwno good child friendly walks and parks in other areas too.
We have no shortage of helpers and everyone so far have offered to help any way they can.
Wondering if we have to write anything up about our childhood/lives as homework or will the social worker do that for us?
The purpose of the home study is for the SW to really get to know you, as individuals and as a couple, so that they can write an accurate report to the adoption panel that gives a good, detailed picture of you and why you would be suited to becoming adoptive parents. That "report" about who you are, how you tick, what your strengths, interests and backgrounds are, is then also part of how the family-finding SWs will decide how to make the best match with a child's needs.
So, really, crossing your fingers that you get a good insightful SW, during your home-study you just need to be honest and thoughtful with them, and engage with their questions and discussions. You should get the chance to review what they write before it goes to the panel, to make sure it reflects you. With a good SW, it is relatively painless, and a unique opportunity to reflect on things like how you were parented, and how that affected you as a child and an adult, etc. It will also be an opportunity to talk about the different additional (and perhaps challenging) needs that a child might have, and how you anticipate responding to some of those.
Carapepi77 Re "Although we have a gravel area we are thinking of turning back to grass for a play area." Good idea. We found a trampoline is a very good investment (with net) for children aged 3 to 11.
Re "Wondering if we have to write anything up about our childhood/lives as homework or will the social worker do that for us?" You will need to write it up and the social worker will read it (probably) or you will read it to her or him. But by writing it up before you speak about it, you will be able to think through any 'issues', area of growth, things that may inform your parenting. But normally this would not be passed on in your details about you that lots of other social workers will see. It is just as RatherBeIndoors says, to help the social worker to get to know you.
(And agree with everything else, RatherBeIndoors, says.)
It's really not scary :-) Homework can be time consuming to complete and the visits can be heavy going as you are talking about yourself and what you wrote in the homework for 2 hours. But it's all ok and not scary at all. Just as the others say, it helps the social worker get to know you.
Don't worry about the house; as the others have said do a little bit of decluttering, but don't make it for the first visit something that you can't maintain - they will be in the house once a week for the next 6 weeks or so, so if you're not a minimalist don't pretend to be one!
You'll be fine :-) x
Nothing to worry about other than what biscuits to serve
It's worth thinking back through any particularly traumatic tines you have had (child or adult) and thinking about what you learnt and how it might help you parent a child with a difficult background. SW like to see how you have reflected on your experience - and sometimes you have to spell it out a bit for them
Think about things like aspirations for your putative child, how you will cope during the rocky times (support networks), and being realistic about the impact a child will have on your life.
Practice phrases like "we haven't thought about that in detail, but would be guided by advice on what would be best for a particular child": use for anything in relation to re-painting the nursery, to contact with a long lost cousin, to wearing a superman costume to school...
In my experience being able to demonstrate how you've overcome challenges, shown resilience, manage stress are good things to give examples of. SW aren't looking for perfect they often are more interested not in the crap you've been through but how you overcame said crap as it shows strength and also perhaps coping skills for any issues you may face. Being empathic towards birth parents is a bonus too. I thought with my past history they'd think NO WAY! But the fact I have dealt with stuff and moved forward positively really helped. Good luck xxx
Lots of good input above.
Other things that might be covered:
House rules - what would be important to you?
Be prepared to 'justify' why a girl (you are cutting out 50% of potential children). What if you girl turns out to be into 'boy traditional' stuff not girly girl. Would that be an issue.
What are your 'expectations'. e.g. We said we wanted out children to be able to go to mainstream school and be expected to be able to live independently as adults.
How would you cope with backstory. e.g. if child was conceived through rape.
How would you cope if child is rejecting of one of you and clingy to other parent.
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