Tag Archives: pap

Meet The Blogger: A Hopeful Dad

This week it’s LGBT Adoption & Fostering week – run by New Family Social. And so we’re pleased this week to welcome a Meet The Blogger post from prospective adoptive parent A Hopeful Dad, who writes about the adoption journey he and his husband are on…

Quick 5 – In my life at the moment….

Book – They’re all about adoption at the moment.

Music – Whatever’s on the radio…

TV programme – The Walking Dead

Food – Sweet potato & feta frittata.

Pastime – Running

Why did you start blogging about adoption?
At the beginning, I started blogging so I felt like I was doing something while we waited for the approval stage to start. Now it’s a great way to keep me focussed and helps me reflect on what’s going on.

Tea/Gin?
Gin in a teapot…

What do you think is your biggest source of support?
My family and friends. They’re all incredibly supportive of our decision to adopt.

What is the best or most memorable piece of advice you have ever received?
Be true to yourself.

At the weekend I can mostly be found…
Reading the papers and relaxing. I’m doing that as much as possible until the children arrive.

You can find A Hopeful Dad blogging here and more about LGBT Adoption & Fostering week here. And in a double whammy – here’s A Hopeful Dad’s post about LGBT Adoption & Fostering week.

Are all adopted children destructive?

Today’s problem shared comes from a prospective adoptive parent looking for some help on expectations and risks of adoption…

I have just finished the assessment process and am due to go to panel next month. I am well A Problem Sharedadread on attachment issues and how adopted children need a different style of parenting. I know people who have adopted and have adopted members in my own family.

I came to adoption because I have always thought that it would be selfish to have biological children when there are so many children in care, waiting for a family. Conscious that I could meet Mr Right and he could want his own, or may not want any kids I waited until I hit 40, but he never showed up. I have never had any particular drive to desperately want children, rather that I have a nurturing personality and have room in my house and my life and I think I would do a pretty good job as a parent, albeit as a single Mum.

So here I am, living my nice little life, with my content little existence in the country with my dog and hens and job, knowing that adopting a child will turn it all upside-down but that it will be well worth it. I have been on the adoption training course and follow up workshops and theraplay courses etc etc. and have had more than a dozen visits from the social worker who has just completed my PAR… when I read Sally Donovan’s Unofficial Guide to Adoptive Parenting.  Now, I know there will be ups and downs, but I know I would not be able to cope with that level of violence and undesirable behaviour. I then looked up blogs online and they all seem to also give me the jitters with more examples of destruction and violence.

What I need to know is to what extent this is to be expected of any and all children coming from care. Or, are these examples not typical, but representative of the worst case scenario. Certainly the few people I know that have adopted have not had to endure the destructiveness or the sort of physical and verbal abuse from their children that I have read about. Maybe they are not typical?

I have already discussed matching considerations with the SW and made it clear that I would not be the right parent for a child with a high level of additional need. I expect to have to put away all precious and breakable things in the early stages… what I haven’t been prepared for is that I may not see my precious things again until after the child has left home! And I really could not live in a family where I feared the child may harm themselves, others or the dog.

Some of you will be thinking that I don’t sound like I have got what it takes, others may be thinking that I just need to be clear when it comes to matching, but I need to know which of those is the truth… I want to adopt in order to give a child a happy family life, and would prefer not to venture into it at all if there is a real risk I could let that child down by not being up to the job.

I know that early trauma is not something that I can magically fix in the first few months, but am I being too naïve in thinking that adopting a child isn’t going to be as hard and potentially devastating as some accounts describe. In my head I am wondering if all the professionals I have spoken to have taken as read that I know that this is the reality of children looking for an adoptive family, while my friends are saying that I am reading worst case scenarios and that I am worrying about something that is very unlikely. You guys are the only ones who can tell me….

Getting experience

Today’s problem is from May, a prospective adoptive mum, can you help her?

My partner and I are currently in the system and waiting to meet with a social worker, but whenbedtime we spoke on the phone he suggested that we could help ourselves by getting some experience with children in the age range that we’re considering.

At the moment, we’re not entirely sure what age we’ll be thinking about, but probably under 3. So the obvious choice for getting experience would be to volunteer in a nursery. However, we’re also aware that many children are going to have difficulties and we’re wondering if working with untraumatised children is going to give us the experience we need? Yes, we might get to do the practical things like feeding, nappy changing and playing, but is that enough at this stage?

I’d be interested to know where other adoptive parents gained experience (if at all) and whether they felt it was worthwhile.

So, what were/are your experiences? Can you share them? Any suggestions?