Statement of Facts - Step Parent Adoption(9 Posts)
Also posted in Legal Matters.
My 12yo dss lives me and dh full time and has done since late 2011.
His bio mum lives abroad and has chosen to cut dss out of her life. I met dss when he was 2 and have been main mother figure in his life since then. Bio mum willingly signed Residency to us and PR to me.
There has been no direct contact since April 2013. We took dss to Europe to visit her. They spent a couple of hours together but she brought dss back early stating that 'he wanted his mum'.
We had also taken him to see her in April 2012 and August 2012 but there was a lack of commitment from her end on each visit (i.e. not showing up/showing up extremely, extremely late with poor or no excuses) so we stopped because the waiting around and anxiety was damaging to dss. The court order does not oblige us to take dss for visits- we were just trying to do the right thing. She visited England for 2 days in January 2012. Since then she says that she cannot afford anymore flights but she and her new dh take regular 5* holidays to other locations.
She also refuses to send Christmas or Birthday cards on financial grounds. Nor does she call on special occasions. We originally waived child maintenance as we were just happy to have dss with us officially but the court ordered a payment of €75 a month. This has never been paid so the debt must be approaching €4000.
The last indirect contact was a drunken phone call in November 2013 entailing verbal abuse to a then 9yo dss which traumatised him to the point of missing a day of school due to lack of sleep (We did not take this decision lightly- I am a teacher and dss was a pupil in my school at the time.)
No contact with bio mum's family either. We contacted her sister (dss' godmother) just over a year ago asking for help in trying to build some kind of relationship between dss and his bio mum but she did not want to get involved and said that if bio mum did not want to know dss then there was her choice. No word from her since. In fact, both sisters have blocked our phone numbers.
Dss is very keen on the adoption, as are myself and dh. We have taken several months to discuss it as a family and ensure that dss understands the implications if it goes ahead. I sent bio mum a letter about my intention to adopt via registered mail in November but received no reply. She has moved house twice but I think that the address that I used is correct as we heard that she had moved back to the flat that she used to live in originally and and the letter was signed for. We also emailed her the letter but again, no reply. I also looked her up on Facebook and messaged her but as we are not friends she may not have received it.
Therefore, on the A58 form I will need to state that I do not have bio mum's consent to the adoption and I will need to submit a Statement of Facts as to why I want to go ahead.
My question is what this Statement should focus on: her shortcomings or my positives? I want to be honest but there are so many examples of damaging behaviour on her part that the document came across in quite a nasty way and I'm concerned that that will in turn reflect on me somehow.
I hope that somebody can give me some guidance.
No idea legally I am afraid but I think you are amazing!!
I would maybe explain it as you have here and big up the positives a bit more. Your explanation here is very clear and concise.
Good luck! Your DSS is a very lucky boy
Ah thanks Wheresthel1ght
Yes, I will keep it as concise as possible as it does say to write a brief description of the background. Whilst I'm not interested in mud-slinging, there have been some really inconsiderate actions on bio mum's part that will need highlighting.
I mainly refrained from detailing the positives in this particular post because I've posted on MN about my close relationship with dss before and I didn't want to blow my own trumpet too much
I have read some and being proud of such a lovely young man and championing how good a step relationship can be is nothing to be ashamed of!
You could also try posting on the adoption board as there have been quite a few step parents asking similar to you there.
Thanks Wheresthel1ght! I'm just keen to avoid sounding smug or something. But it's true, I'm very proud of our family.
Thanks for the tip Haffdonga
DSS very lucky to have you in his life.. Good luck with the adoption
Thank you Bakerandspice! I finished the document today so dh will read it through tonight
Little update: Intention to Submit Adoption Application received by bio mum and LA. Dss is starting to show his excitement and emotion a bit more which is lovely. I will manage his expectations but it is nice to discuss the potential outcome with him. He is just so lovely though. "Whatever they say, you're my mum anyway because you're always there. It would be cool though!" ❤
Bio mum continues to be 100% NC. On the day the letter was delivered she was on Facebook as usual discussing what trainers she wanted to buy etc so no change there.
LA have sent me a form to fill in and are going to contact me about a visit once I have submitted the details of the other adults living in the house. (It's my mum's house and sometimes she and dss are even closer than dss and me lol so no problems there.)
I will have to clarify re: amount of time to wait before applying to the court because this was previously three months but my letter says that once the dbs checks are done then we can apply. Secondly, it says that it's up to me to get bio mum to sign the consent forms because she lives abroad but she ignores ALL contact. I'll see how that plays out when the sw tries to contact her I guess.
Have a good weekend
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