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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on adoption.

Advice on how to adopt a baby

(18 Posts)
Lou2016 Sun 10-Dec-17 15:43:56

I am 43 and me and husband are looking to adopt a baby. I don't have kids (not been able to). I do have 2 wonderful step children who are with us every other weekend (my husband's kids from prior marriage).

I would like to hear your experience of adopting and where you think we are best (whom) to start contact with.

Thanks.

hidinginthenightgarden Sun 10-Dec-17 17:56:00

Start by contacting your local Authority. I did this and was told they were not taking applications for anyone wanting to adopt children under the age of 3. Because we have a child aged 4 we had no choice but to adopt a baby so we went further a field. You can contact any agency within a 35 mile radius. You can contact voluntary agencies too.
If you really want a baby then you could consider foster to adopt. In this case you are approved as both foster carers and potential adopters. You will be matched with a baby (sometimes just days old) who will come and live with you as a foster child. They are usually very unlikely to return to parents but I know of two people who had to return the babies they were caring for which was heart breaking for then. In the meantime you will have to take the baby to contact meetings with their birth family and also child protection meetings.

F2A is more likely to get you a baby but there is uncertainty. We adopted a 1 yr old as did friends of ours so it depends on how young you want the baby to be.

Italiangreyhound Sun 10-Dec-17 22:36:51

Great advice from Hiding.

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 08:14:56

Thank you so much for your advice hidinginthenightgarden. I really wouldn't want to risk heartbreak of F2A (after already going through 7 failed pregnancies). I would definitely go for straight forward adoption.

How are you finding your 1 year old? (and congratulations on that 😊). We would consider this age. We will start with local authority like you say.

Thanks again.

Italiangreyhound Mon 11-Dec-17 09:54:25

It's only local authorities/county council adoption departments that have children to place, at least that was how it was when we adopted. So voluntary agencies are used for harder to place children. If you want a baby then your local authority is the best place to start but I would ask other local authorities in neighbouring areas what the profile I'd children they are placing is like.

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 13:35:00

Thank you and noted Italiangreyhound 👍

hidinginthenightgarden Mon 11-Dec-17 16:58:43

The one year old is fabulous thank you although she is now 2! We have a birth child so we had done the newborn stage and I must say it has been nice to have that year off with an older baby who is more able to do stuff and is developing their personality. That said it is also the age where they are really discovering the world and can be quite traumatising when that world disappears and is replaced with a new one.

I know this sounds awful but we found that the more deprived areas had young babies available for adoption for reasons that don't really need to be explained. It's very sad to see the cycle of neglect/poverty in some places.

Italiangreyhound Mon 11-Dec-17 17:08:49

I've also heard (anecdotally) that big cities have a number of young women who come to the UK to work. Undeniably this is the case! But I have also heard that some of them will get pregnant and don't want to keep their babies. They may be from countries/religions that would mean they were less likely to want to have an abortion and not want to turn up back in their home country with a baby.

Generally, with adoption having anything in common with birth parents in relation to religion or ethnicity can help with matching. So do be aware if you share an ethnic background or religion it could be a plus to mention this.

As I say this is anecdotally I've heard of this.

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 18:16:46

hidinginthenightgarden, glad to hear your 2 year old joy is doing well. Yes, I see where you're coming from with the age thing, reducing the number of sleepless nights to a degree too! 😉😄 Thanks for sharing and advising.

Italiangreyhound, all valid info, thank you. I must say me/husband would want to adopt a baby more for the reason that the parent/s simply don't want it rather than because they've suffered some traumatic abuse or been under influence of drugs and/or have mental disorder. I already decided to end one of my pregnancies at 13 weeks due to downs syndrome (and told it was unlikely to live long) so I'd not want to adopt that heartbreak if that makes sense.

I've now reached out to my local authority and they've already sent me a pack. Reading the profiles of some of their children is unbelievable. A poor baby who got shook so hard by its parent has led it to long term brain damage! Its so cruel I can hardly digest it.

There's me and husband, who everyone says we're the most caring and kind people and would make the best parents ever, and desperate to have our own kids (but can't seem to) and yet there are parents out there who clearly don't care about parenthood (umderstatement), and are dropping babies left, right and centre. Another point I must make (sorry I'm on a roll now!) .... when I went for IVF, they get you to complete a rather long form and sign a declaration about your "qualification" to bring up a child (your own child). What I don't get is why IVF parents are screened in this way (who are clearly desperate to be parents). I think everyone (IVF and natural triers) should have such screening, although my husband says that would be impossible but he sees my point.

Anyway, we will need to firstly attend an adoption info evening and then will take things from there.

Thanks again for all the advice. 👍

Jellycatspyjamas Mon 11-Dec-17 18:30:13

With the greatest of respect, you really need to do some reading around children who are placed for adoption. Very, very few children are relinquished because their parents can't care for them or don't want them, the vast majority have been removed due to abuse and/or neglect usually against the birth parents wishes. There's always a degree of uncertainty in adoption in terms of how the children grow and develop and all will gage experienced trauma, even adoption itself is traumatic for children (and adoptive parents).

You should also check whether local authorities have an age bar with babies, I know ours wants a maximum 42 year age gap between the child and youngest parent so you'd not be considered for a child younger than 12 months here.

Adoption is a lovely way to create or add to a family, but it's far from straightforward and does demand resilience, flexiblity and determination. I'm your shoes I'd do as much reading as possible to know you're going into the process with your eyes wide open.

Ted27 Mon 11-Dec-17 19:03:43

I would second what jellycat had said. Very few children end up in the care system because they simply don't want 'it' .

The most criminally abusive and negligent parents will fight to keep their children.

My son was relinquished because his father could not care for him, and was able, at that point, to put his child's needs first. This does not mean that he was not wanted. But that for many reasons dad just could not do it. My son still ends up traumatised and damaged.

Adoption is a lottery. My son is doing well. But he is still very challenging to parent. I consider our adoption a success but I am one of the lucky ones.
I'm sorry if this sounds harsh but adoption is not a way of replicating a birth child. Adopting a young baby does not reduce the risk. The profiles you will have seen will be typical.

If you cannot accept uncertainty and potential heartbreak then its really not for you. I think you need to do a lot more research and thinking.
.

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 19:12:16

Jellycatspyjamas, and Ted27. Thank you. I am not committed to anything right now. Really just in early stages of looking into it and still grieving a miscarriage so won't be making any big decisions right now.

Thanks for all of this as it's all advice that I'm looking for x

Rainatnight Mon 11-Dec-17 19:43:30

I agree with what others have said. You've got lots of thinking to do. Hang around these boards for a while, look through the history and get a flavour for the kinds of issues people face.

The adoption assessment process is (rightly) quite rigorous and challenging about why you want what you want (if that makes sense) so you need to be pretty clear in your own mind on your reasons for adopting.

The age thing isn't necessarily a barrier. My DP and I adopted an 8 month old earlier this year and DP was going on 47. The LA didn't care at all (though two matches had fallen through for DD, so I don't know if that made them more flexible).

I'm very sorry for all your losses so far. flowers

Ted27 Mon 11-Dec-17 19:47:53

I'm sorry to hear that Lou. To be honest its probably not the best time to be looking into adoption if you are grieving. You need time to come to terms with it. Adoption is a tough road, you need to be in the best place.
No adoption agency will consider you anyway for at least 6 months after you have stopped fertility treatments. Take your time - it will be better in the long run

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 19:54:49

Rainatnight and Ted27 thank you so much. All advice taken. I'm glad I opened this thread. Xx

Italiangreyhound Mon 11-Dec-17 20:14:29

Lou "I must say me/husband would want to adopt a baby more for the reason that the parent/s simply don't want it rather than because they've suffered some traumatic abuse or been under influence of drugs and/or have mental disorder."

As Jellycatspyjamas says, to be hones there are very, very few babies who are relinquished each year in the UK. It does happen. I know a family who adopted a baby who was relinquished, but it is very rare. Babies have not always suffered a lot of abuse or neglect. Some have. But some may be in a family where it is known the parents could not care for or cope with a child.

And yes, you need to heal and grieve from the losses.

I think also you will need to look (in time) into why children are removed. It's not necessarily evil parents who won't care for their kids but in many cases damaged individuals who come from damaged homes, who suffered from abuse themselves, and/or drugs or alcohol problems, who are not able to prioritize their children's needs.

Lou2016 Mon 11-Dec-17 21:02:34

Italiangreyhound, thank you for this valuable info.

Jellycatspyjamas Mon 11-Dec-17 21:21:14

I'm very sorry for your loss, I think it can be especially difficult to think of children who don't get the care they need when you're grieving such a big loss.

Be gentle and give yourself time - as things settle you may find yourself thinking of adoption and being quite surprised at the children/ages etc that you become drawn to. Just now though I suspect you're barely putting one foot in front of the other so give yourself time and space.

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