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Help! Stage 1-2(12 Posts)
DH and I finished stage one in July but there was a small delay due to SS not sending the medical and cafcass stuff to us and then our GP messing us around a bit with appointments.
FF to today and we still haven't had an answer as to whether we're being allowed to progress to stage 2. We've phoned and emailed several times to find out what the delay was and it transpires that my DH's DBS still hadn't been processed (I had mine back 10 weeks ago) and that both stage 1 coordinators have left the LA. And even though our medical forms were submitted at the start of August, they've not yet been signed off either.
The senior social worker who sounds lovely has now stepped in and I can imagine how much additional stuff she's having to do but she's called DH and I in for a meeting to discuss some things from our life stories (debt- resolved and DH and attending Relate- 2 years ago.) We'd already bared all to the SW at our initial meeting pre -stage one but we're nervous now. Has anyone else had this happen?
I'm starting to doubt and question and I'm worried that I'm losing my nerve as this all seems very difficult. I knew it'd be hard but felt reassured by the time scales. Now that they're all out of kilter, it's made me worry that if it's this tricky, disorganised and slow just now, how much harder could it get ?
And, of course, I'm worried that we are turned away following tomorrow's meeting.
Any advice or support would be brilliant.
Ignore the time scales they give. IT will likely be longer.
They are always disorganised - get used to it. They lost 2 of or references and never ring or email. Ours said they would ring us monday, I emailed them tuesday after having heard nothing and got automatic responses saying they were on annual leave, so why they said they would call then I do not know!
If the debt is resolved it is not an issue. Neither are any mental health issues, they just want to know that they really are resolved or managed in a way that it won't impact on any children. Both DH and I have had counselling of some sort and they tend to turn it into a positive and express how it will help you support a child with similar issues.
You should be fine.
Thank you for your swift and lovely response!
Yes- debt is resolved as is need for Relate.
We were both on anti-depressants at one point but due to a very complex series of unfortunate events - a huge storm which we have weathered. I can only hope that the SW sees the value in having adopters who can cope and know where to get help when the going gets tough, are resilient etc.
I understand overcoming adversity is usually seen as a positive. They'll want to know you have the tools and resilience to do the same in the future.
Another wishing you good luck .
Turn everything into a postive . You were quick to ask for help and support when you realised that you needed it ( relate ) .
You proactively sought out help and stuck with it . You showed how determined you both were to work on your Marriage . You wanted to work together to overcome the issues that were affecting you, rather than getting annoyed with each other .
You leaned new skills ( dealing with conflict in a healthy way, listening skills ) and more understanding of each other,
So you are proactive people , not afraid to ask for expert help . Tell the SW that once the child is placed you woudl be quick to seek their advice on any problems ( they love to think of themselves as experts, even though they've only had two lectures and one half day training on adoption ) .
You have more skills/ patience / understanding . You've learned to be more patient with each other and so you know it will take time for you and your new child to adjust to each other . Etc etc
Do NOT try to dismiss it . Either by saying " oh that was all in the past so it's not revelant now" . Or by saying " well the circumstances were unique because my mum died and he lost his job all in the same week ,so that woudl never happen again " .
Thank you so much everyone for the brilliant advice and support- I really needed it.
To the posters who've given suggestions about turning situations into learning experiences that show we would be good at supporting a child with needs surrounding trauma, developmental needs and so on - very true. This is something we've already included in our personal statements so hopefully we can expand on this at the meeting.
Kr1stina- totally agree about not dismissing... I should imagine that dismissing things that have happened to a child who has experienced trauma as 'over' and therefore not to be discussed could be the worst thing possible and hugely damaging.
Okay. I feel better prepared and hugely bolstered. I'll let you know how our meeting goes. Thanks again.
Agree with kr1stina.
I had previously been on AD's but it was a positive in my PAR as knowing when to ask for help etc.
My employer had to send in around 3 or 4 references for me as SW kept loosing them, then SW's would leave or go off sick!
The clock only really starts ticking for them when you start stage two as I don't think there is a limit on stage 1 so they're not AS bad in stage two (in my experience anyway!!) and it was at this point I was allocated my own SW.
So we've had our meeting and the senior social worker was lovely. She said that we've both clearly got much to offer as adopters but that she doesn't feel that this is the right time for us to do this just now, partly also because DH is in the process of changing jobs.
If we'd still like to be considered then we've to contact her again in January. I don't know what I feel. Numb? Relieved? This is so complex.
Yet I do actually think that she's made the right decision. DH is devastated though
So you think she's right, it's not the right time for you ?
Sorry to hear your Dh is so upset .
I don't know. I challenged her by saying that I can't help thinking that if it were I who was a stay at home parent/looking for work, it would be seen differently. I get that it wouldn't be brilliant for DH to start a new job in the middle of stage 2. But what if he had a job and then lost it a few weeks into a placement? There are so many what ifs and no crystal ball. I think DH just feels rejected and partly 'at fault'.
But I feel calm and relieved. Very sad too- there'll be no more children in our lives if we stop here- but mostly calm and we've not been written off completely. We've been encouraged to contact them in January and the SW said that we'd not have to redo medicals, DBS checks or references, simply update life maps and employment history. So maybe we both need to sit on this a while, keep talking and then reevaluate in January.
much to offer as adopters
Hang on to this bit.
They haven't said 'no' and if they'd have meant no, they would have.
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