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Urgent advice needed - think DH wants to give DS back(145 Posts)
DS (14mo) was placed with us 3 weeks ago. He is waking during the night at 2am and then coming in with us - he slept through the night at his foster carers. He whinges when he is put down if you've been holding him. He's very clingy to me but doesn't really want DH yet. DH is constantly telling him "no" because he tries to climb on things he shouldn't etc because, you know, he's 14mo.
All of which I would say is normal behaviour for a 14mo. DH doesn't think so. Says "we can't give him back because then I would be the cunt who denied you your only chance if being a mum". I feel sick. I don't know what to do.
Seriously? I'd think about leaving your dh if I'm honest.
Oh my goodness - that has to be one of the saddest things I've read on here.
In your situation I would keep my precious baby, who is, completely understandably, taking time to settle with his new family. And I would 'give back' the man-child/husband to anybody who will take him. Nasty, nasty man How the fuck did he get through the adoption process in the first place?
All normal behaviour for any baby/toddler. It's lovely your baby is coming to you for the affection and reassurance he needs.
My son (not adopted) only stopped coming into our room at night to sleep when he was 7
Your DH needs to get with the program.
Little kids get scared at night sometimes and want to be with you.
Alternatively you sleep in the room with your lovely DS and leave DH to it.
Should add that DH is currently suffering severely with an illness that has caused extreme fatigue - his treatment has been delayed due to the adoption process but begins on Friday. It is made worse by stress (and obviously we are stressed) which then makes his exhaustion worse. This is so unlike him. He has an 8yo son who he adores. He is such a caring and loving man. He didn't have any time off when his DS was born so doesn't seem to remember that so much of this is normal - whereas he is currently on SPL for another 3 weeks then returning to a job he hates.
It's really common for adoptive parents to feel like they've made a huge mistake, it sounds like you're doing amazingly but your dh is finding it harder to adjust. Have you both been off work, is your dh going back soon? For now, I'd focus on being the primary carer and settling your son in, take the pressure of dh and let their relationship develop in due course.
He is finding it harder than me and I think he feels like a failure because of it. I have to do most of the care for DS (although DH does all his meal times except breakfast) and DH is handling all the housework and cooking. My parents who live on the same street as us and who are my main support network are on holiday and i miss them so much and need them- I guess without their support I have been really snappy at DH. Bit I'm terrified of losing my baby boy.
I'm really feeling conflicted about our marriage. He just hasn't seemed happy for a while, nothing brings him any joy. He doesn't laugh or smile.
But the whole reason we decided to have a baby was because he already had DSS- if he had been childless I could quite happily have been childless too, but I struggled being a sort-of-mum to my DSS (so couldn't do the things I always wanted like go work abroad or move away) so wanted to go the whole way and become a mother.
I do not want to be a single mum. And if feel like the worst mother in the world for letting it get this far when it could now go so horribly wrong for my little boy. And if DH and I did split up I don't think they would let me keep DS anyway?
Should also add that I don't want to lose my DS. My last post makes it sound like if DH and I split up I would try and give DS back. I wouldn't! But honestly don't think I could do it, being a single mum. I'm not a 'natural'.
So sorry to hear how difficult this all is for you op - and sorry if my original reply sounded trite.
Being a single mum is hard but you would cope - people just do and you would too. Your adopted son IS your son now - how could a marriage break up mean you would lose your son?
If your DH was a good husband up until his illness, maybe you just need to give it time and see how it goes - hopefully now your DH is getting treatment, there is light at the end of the tunnel and he will start to be more like his old self as he recovers? Hard for you in the mean time though, I realise.
Because we haven't applied for the adoption order yet - we are approved as a couple so I thought that if the marriage were to break down DS would not be able to stay in our care.
He's unhappy in his job but no real prospect for change there. I don't know what's going to happen, if the treatment will make him happier. Feels like so much is at stake.
x-posted with you OP. Honestly, I don't think there's such thing as a 'natural' mum - we all learn as we go along. You've not had the advantage of getting used to it gradually - don't you think you could be underestimating yourself? You sound as if you're a lovely mum already and if your son is wanting comfort from you all the time, he's clearly bonded with you
This is simply dreadful. How did he get this far to actually have a child place with such an attitude. This little child doesn't seem to be causing very many problems to me. And it's your DH whose behaviour is the most worrying. But the point is if your DH is suffering from stress and a serious illness is it really the best idea to be adopting a child at the present time.
Having a baby is the biggest life change and so tough on every level as a couple, individual, family. The difference is you get 9months to think about it.
Adoption is a whole other ball game. The child is older and no doubt hasn't had the easiest start.
You are both doing an amazing job, it really is tough, but it will be so worthwhile. Your Mum can't be away long, try and get some support, meet some other mums at a toddler group or music group.
It sounds like your DH will be getting some help with his health soon which is great. He has obvs been a parent before so remind him you need his expertise not criticism.
I am adopted, and I can't thank my parents enough for choosing to have me. Your baby will feel the same too. Keep going but reach out for support.
Op you are right - first of all these things are all completely normal for any 14 m o and although I only have bc I would think even more so for an adc who is experiencing massive change and the loss of his primary attachment figure up to now.
Your dh needs to put your new little ds first and you need to remind him to do that.
Hi please don't panic too much, it's really early days and everyone is finding their feet
My AD was placed with us nearly two months ago and I'll be honest to first couple of weeks, we both felt like we had made a mistake. DH found it very difficult especially as she wouldn't let him do anything for her and just wanted me.
Now it's like a different family, we have got into a routine and DD is happy for DH to do things with her which means they have boned and some of the pressure has been taken off me.
Give it time and keep talking to each other X
I know I posted for advice but I don't think responses asking how he got through the process are helpful. He wanted to do this. He is a good father. It's not hard to believe he got through and is now struggling. He needs some support but so do I. But I know him and I know he is not likely to go out and seek support and that's what worries me. I don't think he actually doesn't want this; he is struggling with broken sleep (caused by a fidgeting co-sleeping baby and side effects of his own illness), a stressed out wife who is having to do everything for the baby, and a serious chronic illness which he has regular treatment for but the waiting list is ridiculous and the treatment he should have started back in December got postponed due to our matching panel and delayed for 2 months. So treatment that should have started last summer, he couldn't access til December anyway and even then it was delayed. He is exhausted and ill.
I'm sorry. I didn't mean to sound so curt in my original response. Maybe seeing a doctor or therapist would help your dh/marriage.
BangPippleGo that's sounds so hard for you all. I've adopted twice and the first few months after bringing them home each time it was easily the hardest thing I'd ever done, and put strain on both DH and I, and our marriage.
Do you and DH get on well with your social worker, or with DS's SW? If so could you talk to them about it? You wouldn't have been approved as a couple if the SW and panel weren't sure you would be suitable. Presumably DH's health issues were discussed as part of the assessment and referred to in your PAR? Do you think he's just struggling with the lack of sleep, and panicking?
Also are you members of Adoption UK? They have a forum and advice phone line which could help. Don't be afraid to lean on your real life support network too. Sorry loads of questions, not expecting you to answer them here, but thought it might to help to ask.
It's early days, so hang on in there
I am so sorry to hear this. It sounds like your husband needs some space and more time. I think that with his illness, all you can do is stand by him but do not loosen your care for your baby, as you do so. Tell him that you are going to get through this, his illness and the fact you are both new parents, he needs the time and he is obviously struggling with it all. Hopefully everything will work out and slowly baby and dad will slowly start to bond and love one another. This is a really difficult situation, but it sounds like you are not the only couple that have struggled with the adjustment. I don’t believe that your husband means what he is saying about giving that precious baby back, a breakdown in adoption shouldn’t even be an option for you. You both will adjust and you will get through, just look at what you have already accomplished!
Sending big hugs your way x
I think people are being a little harsh on your DH- it's life changing, so tough and probably so not like he imagined. Just to give you some hope, when our two boys came home my husband pretty much was exactly the same- we got to a point where I was in love with them, and he felt nothing apart from anger at how much they had disrupted our lives and how it wasn't as easy or natural to him as he imagined. BUT we kept going (he said he couldn't disrupt for my sake and for the boys) and it got better. It was slow and hard but we are 3 years in and never been happier.
I too think people are being very harsh on him, 3 weeks in we were both on our knees with tiredness and stress and that was without a chronic illness. It's ok to say it might have been better to delay placement until your DH had his treatment (rather than delaying treatment) but you are where you are.
I'd be cutting you all an enormous amount slack just now, if you need to sleep separately for a while just so that you each get a bit of rest then do that. Don't spend every waking minute at home, get out with or without baby, see friends on your own, let dad look after him for a wee short while. Most of all remember it's very very early days for you all - it's so hard parenting from a standing start, add in a health condition and you're all a bit challenged. Do be open and honest with your SW about how you're all feeling, they are there to support and will have seen it all. Their priority is protecting the placement from breakdown so they won't be looking to rage your baby away.
OP, your husband is doing all the cooking and cleaning, and unless he particularly loves it, cooking and cleaning is drudgery, so maybe you could share some of that? Unless he loves it, it might feel to him that he is being an unpaid servant.
If dc likes climbing is there a soft play and/or outside play area near you aimed at very young children? If you are one of the first people at soft play you can often enjoy it almost empty of other kids. You and dh can spend time together with dc/relax with a coffee with you. Same for play area.
Can you spend time with dh and dc which your dh enjoys, if your dc is ok for going out and about, in a pram, say. Does your dh enjoy walking? If so pop dc in a pram. You can both chat away to him and at some point he might fall asleep which leaves you and dh to have some quality time talking. Or put dc in a baby bjorn with dh, so there is some closeness between them, dc can face out or face in. Does dh enjoy sport or driving? Pop dc in the car and let dh take him for a tour, dh chatting away, or kick a football (or roll over one or whatever!). Or sightseeing - again dc in a pram?
Print off some info for dh about how to play and engage with dc of this age, to get the most out of it and give most to dc
Are any of these useful? A baby bjorn with dh might give some nice closeness.
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