Just started the process and I'm incredibly anxious!

(3 Posts)
Pembers Sun 17-Nov-13 21:46:30

Hi! I have just started the adoption process (had the pre-screening checklist phone call, gone to the open evening, and have a sw coming round next friday)

I'm just so worried that they will reject me as unsuitable. I have a DS aged 5, I am a single parent, I live in a rented house which needs some work doing (I moved in end of aug so it is a case of doing it bit by bit and garden needs work) but I anticipate that all to be done by end of March, I'm currently employed temporarily full time whilst I look for part time work, and I have suffered bad depression (I'm currently on anti depressants and feel stable, and I'm hoping that as the assessments etc will be made over winter, I can demonstrate how well I'm doing).

I feel like I can justify and argue how any potential barriers either aren't issues or are in the process for getting resolved, eg as soon as spring comes my garden will be sorted; but I'm just so worried that a sw won't see it like that.

Meita Mon 18-Nov-13 10:15:55

Hi Pembers,
Did you mention all the things you said here during that pre-screening phone call? If yes, you can interpret the fact that they are still going ahead with an initial meeting at your home, as a sign that they are not too worried.
If not, you should definitely bring them up during the home visit (if the SW doesn't). It's best to have these things in the open, to avoid disappointments later on and wasting people's time.

- Being single should definitely not disqualify you, but they will probably want to know exactly how much support you have and if there are other people around who you can rely on in an emergency.

- Having a child already will mean that you are limited in the age range of children you can adopt, probably they will want there to be an age gap of 2 years or more.

- Being in rental rather than owning should not be a problem as long as it is stable, long term.

- The work needed on your house depends on what it is, I guess. You definitely wouldn't be approved until everything is deemed safe, and you wouldn't be matched with a child in the midst of anything major; the thinking going that the new child will need a stable, orderly environment. Some agencies however will ask you to get any work out of the way before they even start assessing you.

- Your job situation might be relevant insofar as they will be interested in how you propose to support yourself and two children. It sounds as if you might not qualify for adoption leave, so would only get statutory adoption pay, would you be able to get by on that? They will expect you to take at least 6 months leave, and to be willing to extend that to a year if the situation necessitates it. Could you afford a year off work? And they will also want to know your thoughts about childcare solutions once you do go back to work.

- Regarding your depression, from what I have gathered, experiences vary. Some have adopted whilst on ADs, others have been denied due to being on ADs, some have been delayed until they were off the pills. When we were talking to agencies, some said they would only take us on 12 months after coming off the tablets. In any case it won't be just up to you to convince your SW that you are stable, but rather, it will be something that will come up in the medical, and your GP will have to say something about it, and the agency's medical advisor will then tell the SW if they should go ahead with you or not.

I can totally understand how anxious you are. It's tough, when decisions about your life are reliant on some stranger's opinion.

In my limited experience so far there was never much point in 'arguing my case' with a SW. Even when they were being obviously illogical, and when I managed to get them to see that, they wouldn't budge. You are totally dependent on them and in effect, if they say jump, you jump.
On the other hand, don't get too disheartened if you encounter rejection. Firstly, chances are that they are right, so if they advise you to wait for 6 months/a year until you start the process, that might be a good thing, even if it is hard to see in the moment. Many posters on here have said that in hindsight they were glad to have postponed for a bit. Secondly, if you don't agree with the SW's reasons for not taking you on, you can always try somewhere else. The different agencies' criteria and approaches vary hugely, so don't loose heart!

Pembers Mon 18-Nov-13 11:12:19

Thanks for replying.
I mentioned the ADs and job situation on the pre screening call. I need to look into financial situation. I am thinking I will just be on income support and ctc for a year or two until I go back to work part time. I need to look into that financial bit though

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