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Adoption policy & rose-tinted glasses

Published: 14.06.14 by SingleAdopter

The ‘wearing’ of rose tinted glasses, which I tend to do, particularly around areas that I don’t know the full details about, much like the time I entered for the London marathon without looking at the training programme 1st, can have many benefits.

In those types of instances it works for me, as I often work best when I’m presented with the challenge & then have to work it out.

However, with adoption, I thought I was slightly more prepared when it came to my finances.

I know I’m not the only one, but one of the things I worry about most is money. So I duly sat myself down & worked out a rough budget to see if a) it would be affordable on a day-to-day basis & b) perhaps more importantly, when I would be on adoption leave as I knew I would be on reduced pay.

Now this is where the rose tinted glasses let me down; I had read, somewhere, I thought it was my work adoption policy which I knew reflected the Government statutory policy, that adoption pay was the equivalent to maternity pay. As such it was this that I had done my budgeting on.

Oh dear.

OK, so maybe not the words I used when I vented my frustration; frustration at myself for my naivety in thinking things would be fair, ie pay would be equal – those damn glasses again, as in ‘my world’ why wouldn’t it be equal? So it came a big surprise to me this week when I realised my error.

Having recently moved to stage two & a number of social worker visits were booked into my diary, it finally felt the right time to tell work & to be honest it was a relief. I felt I was keeping a dirty secret, not that’s how I view it, far from it, but that’s how I felt.

Fortunately everyone is being incredibly supportive; some excited, some intrigued, some surprised, but overall supportive. As I’m the 1st to go through the adoption process at work, no one was really familiar with the policy, & as it turned out, neither was I! As it stands statutory adoption benefits are limited to adoption pay only at £138.18 per week – that won’t even cover my mortgage, so I’ll have to rely on my savings. I say as it stands as thanks to the new Children & Family Act 2014, one of the many things it included, & not before time, is for adoption pay & benefits to match those currently given for maternity. Time to go through my budget again.

Am I worried? Of course I am.

Do I regret booking my holiday? No, as life’s too short to regret, but I probably wouldn’t have made the same decision if I had known then what I know now.

Does it change anything? It means I’ll have to tighten my belt even further & try to save harder, but again no.

One thing I have learnt & I really believe in, is that somehow, although I don’t know the answer or even the how, I’ll find a way.