Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on fostering.
private fostering arrangement(7 Posts)
Hi I have been awake since 5am and need to 'talk' to someone. Me and my partner have a much loved 4.5 year old son. He was a ICSI baby after several tries and miscarriages. I am now 45 years old DP is 41. We love having a family so much we considered adoption but my DP really wanted another child from birth and we know that does not really happen. I had such bad pre-eclampsia that we decided to not go down the ICSI route again. So we decided to be grateful for what we have and enjoy our little family.
A good friend of mine has a cousin who has mild learning difficulties from Meningitis at the age of 2 and found herself 28 weeks pregnant (now 29 weeks). She really does not want to keep the child but wants to have some contact and know the people the baby is with. My friend recommended us as she knows our situation and feelings. The pregnant cousin is really happy to meet with us to discuss it all. We are stunned to be given a possibility of another child in our family. At present the talk is of fostering and my understanding is that it could be done as a private fostering arrangement.
Are we mad? Should we even be considering this? I have not allowed myself to really explore emotionally the implications but can't bear the thought of not giving this child a home and allowing them to enter the care system otherwise. I don't even know that the pregnant cousin is even allowed to make those kind of decisions.
We have loads of things to explore and sort out but one of the reasons for posting (as well as venting) was that there seems to be very little info about situations like this or other people's experiences.
Sensitive comments welcome please.
You do sound an ideal family for this baby. I feel it necessary to say to proceed with caution though as I had a friend who got badly burnt doing a similar thing. She was fostering a terminally ill friend's daughter which was planned to be a permanant arrangement and social services were very happy with it. After her death though the absent father's family started making demands and making life very difficult so in the end in the daughter was given to a relative who didn't really want her.
I know this is a one off story of gloom so pleased don't let it stop you trying but if you decide to proceed you need to get cracking. Talk to social services, the family and make sure the baby's father agrees.
Good luck, I really hope it works out for you.
I don't see why it would be a bad idea if you would like to add to your little family.
Like aubergine I would proceed with caution, but from a different point of view. The BM (birth mum to be) has only known about this pregnancy for a week, when she comes to terms with it she may feel differently, and then again even if she remains set on relinquishing the baby when the baby arrives she may feel she does want to parent.
Obviously I don't know how mild her learning difficulties are and if her parenting the baby would even be possible.
The SWD are duty bound to place the baby with the BM's family or someone that the BM has nominated. (I believe) So really there are no barriers to you doing this. I think you wouldn't receive an allowance or fee for being a carer under these circumstances.
I think it would be Kinship fostering rather than a private fostering agreement which may give you much more info if you google it.
It sounds like one of those situations if it all works out it will be brilliant for everyone involved.
Let us know how you get on - and good luck
It would really only be a Kinship fostering arrangement if the LA made the placement with you.
A private fostering arrangement is, well, just that - an arrangement between you and the birth family. You do have to inform the LA six weeks before the baby comes to live with you if it is a planned placement.
I would agree that you need to be careful. I would also say that, in the long-term, this baby will need the stability and permaency that fostering really can not give. You will not have Parental Responsiblity and at some point, a moer formal agreement will need to be reached.
I would also add that I think that you, and your friend's cousin need some more formal advice.
You local Adoption Team would be a good start.
Many thanks for your comments which have been very helpful. We are going to all meet up this weekend and see how it goes. I will try and get some professional advice before then. Cheers!
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