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Defeated before we start ?!

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Hi there everyone ! What a great site ! I'm just feeling quite deflated, my husband & I are unable to have children naturally , we both long to have children of our own , I have suggested adoption may be an option ? My husband has been back & forth with me one minute he says yes then no then yes again . I would never ask him to adopt against his will . I do understand how life changing this is and I am 100% committed . I have been asking for information packs and doing a lot of research whereas my husband has not even looked at the info with me which is worrying me as we both need to be on the same page ! Anyhow he has mentioned some valid points , which have been stressing me out . Such as : my family all live miles away , my mum & dad & sister & nephew at least 2 hour drive away , I only have one close friend and a couple of aquaintances but none of them have children . The only interaction I have had with children is my nephew which I adore ! But hubby thinks this may go against us regarding a support network , my husband has lots of life long friends but sadly his family would never accept me so I don't see his family & have not done for years . He has a bit of contact with them but not a lot , he does not want his family having any part of our children's lives ( if we are to have any ) , because his mother said she didn't want to be because of me etc . So we are both worried that could go against us and make us look bad even though we have tried to offer an olive branch but they will not accept me so there are no bridges to build . I do understand that some adopted children can come from tense family situations but I was worried this could mean they would not accept us ? And finally our other concern is finances , my husband is self employed and has been for many years . But I have been struggling to find a job as I'm not very skilled for a while now so we are managing but money is tight . Obviously I understand they need to know we can support our child aswell . Hubby is adamant we won't stand a chance with all this , while I like to point out the positives , like we have so much love to give and a nice little home for our child to be etc. I'm very creative while hubby is very practical . So I'm trying to look at our strengths going for us rather than things going against us for adoption . But I'm so stressed before we have even started thinking we don't stand a chance ! Has anyone had similar issues ? Or know of these points will rule us out ? Any advice would be appreciated !


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7 users have supported this.

i would suggest you get yourselves to an adoption information event so that you can both talk through your concerns with a sw. it does not commit you to anything but may well answer some of your concerns.


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In themselves I don't think any one of those issues would rule you out but put together you have a lot to think about. But there again, none are insurmountable - you can gain childcare through volunteering, you can build support networks that don't involve the entire family. Plus support doesn't have to always be on hand; it could be someone you phone for advice, for example or it could be through contacts you make within organisations like adoption UK or an organisation that works with children.


If you can manage financially without working that could stand you in good stead as you might well need to stay home with a child for some or even many years - most sws would expect at least a year. You would at the very least get child benefit when a child was placed but there are other sources of income depending on circumstances.


The situation with your inlaws would be explored by sws but if you can demonstrate it's them that are being unreasonable it shouldn't be a stumbling block.


But key is to get your partner on board. Adopting is not easy - the process can be lengthy and challenging and the children are likely to be challenging too, putting strain on the most committed of relationships.


The above advice is good - go together to some information meetings to find out more, to get answers to your questions and so your partner can be helped to decide whether it is the right step for you as a couple or not. Just contact any nearby local authorities or adoption agencies. You won't be committed to anything by doing this.


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It sounds like you have a lot going on in your head. Seems to me that for now, the priority is not whether you'd be accepted, but whether your husband wants to even try? It is absolutely vital that he 100% supports the adoption plan. Adopting is HARD and you'll need to both be committed to working through issues that may arise. The SW will be able to tell if he is not up for it and this will be an issue. More so, for the LO who is placed with you, this could be disastrous. It may affect attachment issues and ultimately cause a breakdown of the adoption which would be horrific for the child. Your family situation does sound complex- however, i would say that if your husband does come to a place where he feels it can be explored, then it is always worth applying! I felt very strongly that if i didn't try i wouldn't know? My main issue was being overweight. I lost 3.5 stone prior to adopting and then decided to go for it! if they didn't accept me then at least they'd tell me their expectation of what i needed to do- which i could then get on with! Luckily I found them to be very supportive and it wasn't a barrier in the end. I really hope you both come to the same point re this. It must be really hard! x


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I would only echo what others have said. Getting yourself a good bit of voluntary childcare experience could be amazing for you though, as not only will it put you in a better place re adopting, but it will add to your skill set if you ever want to work again (although I get the feeling one of most adoptive parenting pairs either work part time or not at all).


What Maggie Moo has said about your husband is right, but I am wondering if he is just scared of failure, and is making the barriers insurmountable, rather than just challenges to overcome? In which case, information days/evenings could be really helpful. x


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7 users have supported this.

As others have said, the things you say are potential barriers are not necessarily so, but what strikes me from your post is your lack of confidence and the attitude of your DH - reading between the lines (and I may be wrong), but he sounds quite controlling and if that is right, that could be a barrier to you adopting....?


I would do as others have said and go to an information evening and also get some voluntary experience with children and then think about the next steps....


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8 users have supported this.

You both sounds as though you have a lot going for you as adopters and other issues that you would need to resolve but I agree with others that the main issue seems to be your DH not being totally on board. It's crucial you are both very much committed to the process, if you aren't then it will be picked up at the home study stage if not sooner.


It's not a decision that can be rushed, we were married 9 years before adopting and over 7 before starting the process. We found out we couldn't have our own children early on, and although we discussed adoption several times it just didn't seem right. Over a period of time we both opened to the idea and then came to a place where it did seem right for us. We went to an information session and then it all moved quickly from there.


Maybe there are issues with regards to adoption your DH is unsure or fearful about, I would recommend reading some real live adoption stories and books, and both finding and talking to other adopters. Some people come to adoption easily and quickly, others take time to see if it right for them.


I don't know how old you and your DH are but most agencies like a maximum of 45-50 years between the age of child and older adopter so unless you are approaching those ages you have time to wait and find out if it is right for you. The adoption process is long and in depth, and waiting can be stressful, and being placed with a baby or child is amazing but totally life changing.


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Thanks so much for everyone's replys ! I do appreciate you all taking the time to do so . Yes we have known for a few years now that we cannot have children naturally so this seems like the next step . But I had another chat with hubby and he explained that he is worried incase he will always think of the child as someone else's rather than his own etc . I did explain that once you have connected with the child we would grow to love each other and it may not be an issue , but is obviously a fear of his . He has agreed to at least have a look at some things now , and I'm going to see if we can book up for an information evening so that we can find out more before deciding . I'm even going to just casually ask him to watch some of the inspiring videos I have seen regarding adoption . I do think your all wonderful people for doing it . And I do long to give a child the love that they deserve and support . I was more worried as I would never want my child to suffer financially and at the moment we do not have any savings in place which I understand is a must ? So that's a worry . As for hubbys family situation as sad as I us we have both accepted it now and it has made us stronger but I would be devasted if the situation went against us as its out of our control anyway . I'm 35 years old and hubby is 40 . I think I'm more concerned about hubby stressing about certain topics, and intrusion . I'm quite an open book so I don't think it will be too bad for me to handle . I do have a support network with my mum and sister and dad but obviously that is the odd visit and lots of phone calls . I just wanted to see if our chances were good considering everything . I have also called a few agency's for information packs which are on the table for hubby to read when he us ready he said he will have a look tonight . I just long for us to be parents so here's to hoping ! Thank you all again !


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8 users have supported this.

Zoolander- you're still really young. Maybe this is the start of your journey!once I knew I wanted to adopt I took at least 3 years to get to the point of applying- lost weight, changed jobs, Moved house etc. Perhaps this is a process for you both- getting more child care experience, reading and looking at research around adopted children, strengthening support networks? Saving some money? Maybe if you changed your perspective It would feel easier? I know how hard the waiting is but maybe this is the start of the exciting journey! Your husbands concerns sound completely normal! I so hope things work or for you! X


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4 users have supported this.

Adoption is wonderful - at times - but equally it's very hard work. There's far more to it than providing a child with a loving home - it's an entirely different experience than parenting birth children and you both need to be aware of that. Love alone will not be a cure all for a traumatised child.


Do read the boards. Find out about the sort of children in the system. You both need to reach a place where you can accept uncertainties - ADHD, asd, fasd plus a myriad of other issues children can present with.


Is Hubbie aware of this?


It's not unusual for one partner to take longer to come round to the idea than the other - you both first of all need to have come to terms with the fact that there will be no birth children and to have grieved that loss. I wonder whether your hubbie has reached that stage yet?


I would also seriously consider getting some childcare experience - both of you. Would he be up for that?


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Hi there , he said he is too tired to do voluntary work aswell as he already works 6 days a week to make ends meet .

I agree we need to do that though . So not really sure how to deal with him saying that . Also I forgot to add my 3 cousins are all adopted years ago and I witnessed many ups & downs & challenges along the way with them & my aunt & uncle . But the lovely part is my aunt & uncle now say that adopting them all was the best thing they ever did which is lovely ! But I do understand a lot more if the challenges and issues then some as I have seen it first hand . All of my adopted cousins came from a very abusive background . Hubby struggles with this as he says he would feel uncomfortable talking openly about adoption like my family do .


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It might be worth looking at tax credits (I know this is more complicated when you are self employed). My income is now a third of what it was before I adopted, but it allows me to work nearby and minimise childcare and work stress. The website turntous is great for working out income and entitlements. Money is no substitute for time and my daughter prefers to have more of me and less of the designer gear and fancy holidays!


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I know this is probably not what you want to hear but I think you would find it difficult to get approved in your current situation. There are definitely things you can work on though that would improve your chances of being accepted.

I agree with the above comments regarding your husband. He would definitely need to want this as much as you do. You will be questioned both together and individually as part of the assessment and any lack of commitment would easily be discovered. If he won't look at the information/research you've gathered maybe an information evening would be a better option. I think your video idea is excellent. Factual books are my husband's worst nightmare but he would happily watch documentaries all night!! There may be some adoption stories on you tube?? I found a few really good documentaries on there.

The issue regarding your husband's family shouldn't stop you from proceeding but the reasons for his family's strong reaction to you and the impact it has had on you both will be explored in home study. Social workers are accustomed to unusual family dynamics but they need to know that you have dealt with it and moved on. During home study difficult questions are asked and it's helpful to think about what they may ask beforehand!!

Finances will more than likely be a problem as they are now. Children are very expensive and as part of the approval process your finances will be looked at in detail. Our SW looked through our bank statements, mortgage statements etc and we had to make a list of income/outgoings to demonstrate that we had enough of a surplus to afford another child. As far as I can remember savings were not required to get approved but you would need some money put aside for the initial outlay when the child comes home (furniture, clothes, car seats etc). You mention your husband is self employed, he would need to have at least 2 weeks off for introductions, preferably longer, so would need to consider loss of earning for that time. When the child came home you can claim child benefit and possibly tax credits too which would help.

Support networks are expected to be robust but it doesn't necessarily have to be family. Think about the people you turn to in times of trouble!! If you have a close friend and your husband has life long friends that might be enough. You will almost certainly connect with other mums/dads when the child comes home and these people often end up being more of a support than the people you think will be there for you. If you make a list of people who support you it will probably be longer than you think anyway. Start with the close friends, but are you friendly with neighbours? I don't speak to mine every day but I know that if there's an emergency I can go to them for help. Do you attend church? I even listed down my manager at work, she visited when my daughter was in hospital and has always been good with sorting time off if the children are ill. You can put this forum. And obviously your own family, mind live far away too but I speak to them most days and having someone to talk to when you're upset/stressed is invaluable.

If I were in your position now I would hold off applying for adoption for a couple of years. Apply for jobs in the childcare sector, maybe do a course at the same time? This would fulfil your childcare experience and improve your finances. Maybe your husband could work less hours if there was a second income and could volunteer at Cubs/scouts to get some childcare in too.

In the meantime continue to read/research as much as possible. Try to engage hubby with the videos or an information evening. He may just need more time to get to the same place as you. It's worth mentioning that social workers will want to know that you have fully accepted that you can't have your own children and often recommend counselling if they don't think you have. This can significantly delay your approval process so if there's any wobbles there access it now before you start. The process is slow, intrusive and the most frustrating thing you'll ever do but worth it a million times over when you bring you LO home. It probably feels like it could never happen for you but there nothing that you've said that can't be sorted out!!

Good luck

Blueberry x x


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Just wanted to add that it is all a learning process and you don't need to make an absolute commitment before you start. As said above there is a lot of learning and preparation you can do beforehand and then when you do start you will attend information sessions and training and then when you go through the assessment with your social worker as well as them learning about you, you will also be learning about the sorts of children who need new families and also the different issues they may come with and which ones you feel able to deal with. Only after this will you be considering (andconsidered for) actual children. At any point on the journey you may decide it is not right for you or alternatively find your commitment growing. It is important for you and your partner to be open and honest with each other and explore all theses issues together


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