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To not know what to say

(114 Posts)
bluejanuary Sat 27-Dec-14 16:35:37

One of my closest friends adopted a little boy a year ago with her husband.

I knew how difficult they have been finding it and today have found out the adoption has broken down sad

My heart breaks for her but I just don't know what to say. I've said I understand why it's happened.

Any advice from anyone (I have namechanged for this post sorry.)

MarjorieMelon Sat 27-Dec-14 16:37:30

What can you say other than that you are sorry. How sad for the little boy. How old was he?

MehsMum Sat 27-Dec-14 16:38:07

I have no direct experience of this, but I think I'd be inclined to let her know that if she wants company, or a listening ear, or anything like that, I'm at the end of the phone/can visit/she can visit me.

It must be a horrible situation for her to be in, and it sounds as if you understand that and will be a good friend for her to have.

bluejanuary Sat 27-Dec-14 16:48:10

He is 6 now - was 4 when they adopted him.

Mehs you're right: it's just a horrible situation all round, and so very, very sad.

Cornettoninja Sat 27-Dec-14 16:51:51

What can you say? Treat it like a bereavement and follow their lead and let them lead the conversation. I can't even begin to imagine trying to get that straight in my own head so if they don't want to talk accept it but be clear that you're there for them.

TeenAndTween Sat 27-Dec-14 16:56:20

Broadly speaking reassure them they have done their best and it's not their fault.
The boy was probably so traumatised by early experiences that he required more specialist parenting than they could provide, and sometimes LAs/SS are not very forthcoming with support once a child is placed for adoption (especially if the legal stuff has been completed, though I'm thinking that's possibly not the case here).
Very sad.
(Adopter)

CakeAndWineAreAFoodGroup Sat 27-Dec-14 17:02:10

How sad, for all concerned. sad

livingonaprayer1986 Sat 27-Dec-14 17:16:21

I'm sodrry for being dumb but what do you mean when you say the adoption has broken down?

bluejanuary Sat 27-Dec-14 17:20:16

That he has gone back into care, he is officially no longer their son.

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 27-Dec-14 17:22:45

That's very sad.

I'd follow their lead re how best to support them.

FurryDogMother Sat 27-Dec-14 17:24:49

Speaking as an adoptee, this is horrifying to me. Not just sad, well beyond that - I've always been told (and believed) that adoption was for life, good or bad, no matter what. I'm trying to think what on earth a 4 year old could have done, what problems he could have presented, that would lead to this. Would a birth parent put their child into care at age 4 for behavioural problems (assuming that's what this is about?). I do feel sorry for your friends, OP, because this must be difficult for them too, I'm not judging them, I'm just appalled that a child can be 'sent back'.

FurryDogMother Sat 27-Dec-14 17:26:13

Sorry, realised that he's 6 now, but that doesn't change my thoughts. I am truly gobsmacked.

bluejanuary Sat 27-Dec-14 17:28:53

Furry you might not be judging but I have to say, you sound remarkably as if you are.

Purplehonesty Sat 27-Dec-14 17:29:56

Oh my goodness what happened ? Poor boy and poor family

StillStayingClassySanDiego Sat 27-Dec-14 17:31:45

It's heartbreaking for the little boy and your friend too.

Cantbelievethisishappening Sat 27-Dec-14 17:33:19

Furry Some children can be very challenging/violent even at such a young age. You don't know what has happened. You sound very judgemental.

hesterton Sat 27-Dec-14 17:33:21

Please don't write about what happened.

RaspberrySnowCone Sat 27-Dec-14 17:34:03

All you can do I guess is be there as a shoulder to cry on. It's incredibly sad for everyone involved but most particularly the little boy at the centre of this, as Furry says adoption is for life once finalised so there will be many factors that have influenced their decision and they may well want to keep it between them and their SW and it must have gone dramatically wrong. No need for prying questions, just be a shoulder/ear for her/them.

Goldmandra Sat 27-Dec-14 17:34:35

I'm trying to think what on earth a 4 year old could have done, what problems he could have presented, that would lead to this. Would a birth parent put their child into care at age 4 for behavioural problems (assuming that's what this is about?).

If you Google attachment disorders you might begin to have an idea of the kind of behaviour the parents may have had to deal with. It can be truly horrific and, if they were ill equipped to deal with it, I can completely understand why an adoption could have broken down.

Shockers Sat 27-Dec-14 17:38:27

It's difficult to explain FurryDog, how the behaviour of a child with attachment issues can totally monopolise your entire life in a very negative way.

It is not the fault of the child... you know that, but knowing doesn't make it any easier. Adopters experiencing severe attachment behaviours in their child need expert support and also respite, as it is wearing in the extreme.

It doesn't sound like this couple got the support they desperately needed.

We adopted our DD 13 years ago and have just had another dreadful Christmas; she can't help it! If my parents hadn't offered us a couple of days respite, I might have blown. It's not easy sad.

Chippednailvarnish Sat 27-Dec-14 17:38:53

I'm trying to think what on earth a 4 year old could have done, what problems he could have presented, that would lead to this

The 4 year old wouldn't have "done" anything, it isn't a situation that warrants blame on any party. For someone who isn't judging, you sound very judgemental.

Something like one in ten adoptions break down, it's not actually that uncommon.

GaryBaldy Sat 27-Dec-14 17:38:57

OP you might be better putting this elsewhere, AIBU is not known for it's gentleness and whilst there are a lot of supportive posters around here the narky ones seem more narky than usual on account of being cooped up with their not so nearest and dearest.

FWIW my 3 cousins are all adopted, they had horrific starts in life that have left them with multiple issues that resulted in one stabbing another, one attempting to drown a friend - both at Primary age. As adults they each have massive problems, drug and alcohol addictions. My aunt and uncle undoubtedly must have come close to thinking that the adoption wasn't working many times.

Desperately sad for all concerned.

GokTwo Sat 27-Dec-14 17:40:13

We have friends in a very similar situation Shockers and it is unbelievably hard for them. I have huge respect for them as parents.

Shockers Sat 27-Dec-14 17:42:48

And * Furry*, please don't think we're talking about all adoptees. Our DS is a completely different matter. We love them both dearly, but I will admit that he's easier to like because he doesn't present us with a daily battle.

Shockers Sat 27-Dec-14 17:44:18

Gok, your respect will mean the world to them! flowers

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