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My wife and I came from Hongkong and she moved to this country in 2005. However, she hasn't been on any jobs (lucky enough my salary is ok..) and she doesn't have any close friends in this country.
The problem is 3 referees are needed in the adoption assessment. Are her friends in Hongkong accepted as referees?
I’m my LA they only allow local referees I.e. within one hour’s travelling time.
If she doesn’t have any close friends, you do need to think about your support network and who will be around to support her emotionally as well as practically. I don’t mean to sound negative but I think social workers will probe the relationships she has in this country and want to be certain that there are sufficient people around who can help when the need arises.
They have to meet referees in person so they cannot be in Hongkong. Plus as pp pointed out, SW are going to question where she turns for support.
I think they will look into the support network you both have in the UK, who would you turn to if you needed help at 1am in the morning, who she would get advice from once you're back in work, and may also ask why she doesn't have any 'close friends' since she's been here a long time. They may not, but they do put a lot of emphasis on this.
Going through the process I didn't understand why they did insist on this support network so much, but 3 weeks into placement I totally get it. Not even for advice on what to do with the LO, but more because I needed to vent, to tell my friends how I wasn't coping, and for them to tell me it was perfectly normal.
Our SW met all our references, bar one, and that was more of an 'extra one' that he took over the phone.
so you have lived in the UK for 15 years, your wife hasn't worked or made any significant friendships?
She sounds quite isolated to be honest and SWs will probably have an issue with that. The last thing you can afford to be when adopting is isolated. You needs friends and support. I think SWs will have concerns.
@HPPanda can I ask if your wife has joined any clubs (keep fit, swimming, running, art anything?) Or done any voluntary work, or been part of any church or religious/faith group etc or had classes, language classes or evening classes etc, since coming to the UK?
If she has been part of these groups and not made any friends at all, this doesn't bode well because she will need to socialise with parents of your new child's friends.
If she has simply not been part of any of these activities then presumably she prefers more solitary pursuits or activities with you. There is nothing wrong with this but, again, children need to learn to socialise before school and to some degree outside school. Your wife, if she is the main carer, will need to facilitate this.
I think you may need to speak together about this and work out how to proceed.
It is interesting you are posting and not your wife.
I've lived abroad, away from family, and found I really needed to make friends, so the fact your wife has not suggests to me she is very self relient.
However, as others have said, she will need a support group.
There is time to build friendships and support but I think you both need to explore this topic and work how to proceed.
@Ted27 13 years! Are you loving on the future!
Fortuately my son does not look to me for help with his maths homework !
Ted now you get to pick up my spelling! Living in not living on the future!
I have no advice, but just wanted to say I'm in a similar situation - we would very much like to adopt, but sadly my lack of friends/close acquaintances means we can't even complete the initial form.
I see the point about needing a support network, but feel that would be something that's easier to develop once you're already a parent (e.g. parents of your child's friends). It's very difficult to start from scratch as a childless person without any contacts or any way into the parenting/childcare world (see also the requirement to have experience with children before adopting...)
BriOnly - we had no real experience with children and we weren’t asked to get any either. I think this depends very much on the LA.
I think its more about being able to demonstrate that you have the ability to form and maintain a range of relationships, rather than just having friends with children.
You are right, you will make friendships when you have children. I have a much bigger social circle now, both adopters and other parents of children with ASD. So at adoption I didnt have masses have friends but I did have a couple of friends from university ( so over 20 years ) and several friends from a previous job (so over 10 years) plus I was able to show a number of other more casual or recent friendships from just having lived in the same place for 15 years and being involved in my local community.
Try to think a bit more widely, work friends, neighbours, what can you do to develop some friendships and come back to it in a year
I agree with Ted27, it's about showing an ability to make friends and maintain relationships.
Yes, you will make friends with other parents once little one arrives but before that you may need some friendly locals who you can talk to, or who could pop out and get a pint of milk for you if you are in need.
*BriOnly, there are loads of ways of getting to know people locally. Maybe neighbours, through hobbies, through work collegaues, book club, music appreciatin group, choir, cooking classes, classes at the gym, aqua fit etc, a running club, church or faith group, local community organisation, evening classes, voluntary work, ice skating classes, committees locally, local toddler group or Brownie pack as a volunteer, etc, etc. Good luck.
These are good suggestions, thank you. I'm realising that maintaining social relationships/friendships is one thing I've never really known how to do, so there's a lot to think about if that's going to be essential to the adoption process.
I will stop taking over this thread now, though, as it's supposed to be about the OP's wife, not me!
well the Op hasn't come back Bri, but its the same issue for both of you.
Try not to think about as a hoop for the 'process'. You will need friends and support for you. Adoption is a tough old road, you don't want to be walking it alone.
think a bit laterally and make the most of what you have.. My SW nearly wet her pants when she found out my neighbour is a nurse. We are not particularly 'friends' more gossip over the fence and I'd always have a chat to her kids. But we are neighbourly and would help each other in an emergency.
In a minute I am off to see my friend, whose daughter is my daughter's friend.
She has been a Mahoosive support to me as we both have daughters on the Autistic spectrum. It's sometimes just a chat, sometimes I'll give her a lift, sometimes she will do me a favour. I've known her a decade but it started out just as chatting. Friendships grow and change, it's not all at the start. When things do go badly having someone to talk to is vital.
My friend in from New Zealand
They FaceTimes her mother and sister and took their interviews that was
My bil lives in Ireland and they took a phone interview however she will need to build up a support network the rerances Won’t be the issue will be no support network
Thanks for all advices.
My wife and I have friends in the UK but the relationship is not very close. I thought the assessors/social works would like to see my close friends who know much about me and my wife.
@HPPanda can you work on those friends, getting to know then more, and your wife allowing them to know her more?
For example have you shared about hopes to adopt? Being comfortable talking about adoption is useful even if you may not share this openly with lots of people.
Friends can be a real help, friends with kids might give advice, pass on clothes and toys, listen to problems etc. It is very hard to talk about this stuff but I do think being able to talk about it is good.
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