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Just starting out in the South West

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Hi. My partner and I are just beginning to dip our toes into the adoption process. We are attending our first drop in session at the council this week and have already spoken to Families For Children. We already have a birth daughter who is 9 so we are being incredibly cautious but are also excited. We've talked about this for a number of years so it feels a little unreal to be getting proactive.


Would love to hear from anyone with experience of Cornwall Council or FFC as we understand the choice of agency is important. Also interested to hear if anyone else has been given the impression that LGBT couples tend to have the more difficult children to place offered to them? Heard a little something about 'ideal heterosexual couples' and was a little shocked - maybe I am naive!

Thanks :)


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First thing to understand is that 'hard to place' doesn't necessarily mean harder to parent. My son ticked every hard to place box there is. He is not easy, he is hard work, but compared to some families l know about he is a dreamboat. Delightful and a joy to teach is how his teachers deccribed him to me last week. Adoption is a gamble, you could have an easy to place baby that turns to have the same issues as the 'hard to place' child. It's very misleading in my view. They could be deemed hard to place simply because they are 6 years old.


Yes some SWs won't be interested because you are gay, but some SWs weren't interested in me because I'm single. Some people get turned away because they are considered to be too fat, too old. I could go on.

Buts lots of gay people, single people, fat people, older people adopt, so I really wouldn't worry about it.


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21 users have supported this.

Thank you! I hadn't thought of it that way. The 'hard to place' label seemed daunting! So much seems to depend on how good your SW is and their own bias and opinions? It all seems a bit subjective and potentially unfair. I guess we just have to hope we get a good one! Great to hear that you have had such a good experience with your son.


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25 users have supported this.

that's were finding the right agency comes in. You need someone you can trust and are confident will work with you. I was originally with an LA, until it became fairly clear that my SW really didn't approve of single adopters, so I moved to a VA.


good luck


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18 users have supported this.

Thank you. So far the local VA is looking more likely than the LA but waiting until we've seen them face to face. First contact with LA was abrupt email saying they'll send out information. From VA it was a lovely 20 minute phone call just to introduce themselves - spoke volumes to me already!


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HI hopefuls2


Welcome to the joy of the adoption journey :-) hard to place is a label that's branded around and is taken in the wrong context by many (us included when we started on his journey and now looking for our family :-)) hard to place doesn't mean the kids are hard to love etc it's quite a variety of things and can even come down to age of kids and sibling groups!!! We're looking at kids that are 'hard to place' as we're looking for a sibling group of 2 aged between 3 and 9!!! As I say there's many labels branded around you will learn through the process about all this!!! Good luck xx and we found no problems with our VA and us being a same sex couple! !! Xx


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Thank you!


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Our first child was " hard to place" simply due to age. " but he was a lovely child and fairly easy to parent.

On the other hand" hard to parent" examples are abundant on these boards. And you may think a particlar child is going to be straigjtforward, but issues arise later. Find out as much as you can about modern adoption of traumatised kids ( very few relinquished babies nowadays) , read a few books ( others on here can recommend some !)

I think that some lbtg adopters may have harder to place children because of discrimination, but some do because they are already people who are more willing to "think outside the box" so they dont automatically reject certain scenarios.. Think through what you thiink you can and cant cope with, acknowledge that it might happen anyway and you will cope somehow, and then go, enjoy the ride !!


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32 users have supported this.

Thank you. We are doing lots of reading. Still can't decide between VA and LA. The LA use independent Social Workers which I am concerned may mean they do not have the same experience / consistency as the VA social workers. On the other hand if the children are coming from the LA anyway is it best to go with them. Have another meeting with the VA in a couple of weeks. Hopefully we will feel clearer after that!


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in my experience, 'hard to place' is a label that means more about the pool of prospective adopters available, than the children themselves. there are loads of people looking for the 'ideal', which they seem to believe means newborn etc. i dont mean that as a criticism, but maybe just a bit of old human nature. but we have adopted 2 'hard to place' boys and i can honestly say they are the two easiest kids in the world and everyone who meets them agrees. they ticked all the wrong boxes, sex, age, siblings and an apparent behavioral issue to boot. we all moved in together two years ago and have never looked back.


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Lovely post Wberesfo. I think 'hard to place' is such a stigmatising label. I wonder if prospective adopters must get these labels from social workers too ("Hard to place with"), given how many are looking for their ideal child (not saying that is any of you!). The truth is we never know what is round the corner, we only have an idea of what we think we can provide that child.


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19 users have supported this.

And you know, those easy to place babies can turn out to be far from easy to parent! I know only too well. Two of mine are now asd, one with adhd thrown in for good measure. One statemented and in special ed. Another about to be. And three very different parenting experiences.


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Who did you go with in the end? If I was you I'd choose FFC. We did and oh boy was it the right choice! Our experience of LA's is not very positive (LA placing children with us). With FFC they can also throw the net wider. They are also in the progress of leading a change in adoption services and will act as the lead of a joined consortium including the local LA's.


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17 users have supported this.

We went with FFC no regrets so far! Now in stage 2


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Cornwall la are very fair and treat every couple equally

As foster carers we had an eSy to piece 9 month old placed with a same sex couple xx

Good luck on your adoption journey


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Hello,


Just wanted to say we are a lesbian couple based in Cornwall and we looked at both Cornwall LA & FFC last summer (information evenings) and after careful consideration of what felt best for us we went with Cornwall LA. We waited to move into our new home and entered initial application/stage one at the start of this year. The social worker we had was really good, so friendly and helpful and we have found the process really comfortable and felt no mistreatment or issues around our sexuality. All the reports that have come back to us about our assessment have shown no predudice and the correct language has been used. Our relationship has been portrayed in a really complementary light and it's been really positive. We have done all the compulsory training days for stage one and two and found the professionals to be really knowledgable and balanced and aware that we are both mummy's and things are slightly different but in an advantageous way- not negative. We have not felt that the fact we are a same sex couple has been a disadvantage in anyway and the atmosphere and treatment we have received through the whole process has been fantastic. The other great thing is that the professionals for Cornwall LA always have a really good mix of stories relating to successful placements in Cornwall of both LGBT & hetro families.

In short, We would strongly recommend Cornwall LA! Wishing you the best of luck with your adoption journey (hopefully see you a few years down the line with your LO at an adoptive families day out- Cornwall run two a year and they sound great!)


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13 users have supported this.

Thanks. We went with FFC and go to panel in a few weeks. We have had the same experience as you - totally positive Smile Good luck with your journey and yes, hopefully we may meet you one day!!


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Hi


I adopt[ted 5 years ago. I used FFC they were great and post adoption support really good. We have a secure family with an outstanding son. The best thing is LIFE and the family.


Good luck with the panel.


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16 users have supported this.

Thank you. Good to hear Smile


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Approved!


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11 users have supported this.

Congratulations!!!


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12 users have supported this.

Well done ! Now good luck finding those " hard to place" children !..........


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15 users have supported this.

Smile thanks!


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12 users have supported this.

Hiya


I'm a single gay adopter from south Devon.


Just had my son with me for a week. Still feels very surreal.


I adopted through Devon CC who were great.


Happy to chat through my experience with you


Best wishes

Phil


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12 users have supported this.

Hi Phil

Congratulations! Thank you, we may well be in-touch.

The whole process feeling very surreal at the moment now we are actually looking at profiles of real children rather than all the theory so far.

Best wishes


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