Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Home Study Visits

This a re-run and cut down version of my home study posts... It'll probably still be too long.

Home Study Visit 1
We've met our social worker... and she seems nice. She arrived early this morning, which I think is a positive sign, I'd hate to have been waiting around for her.

Started off with general chit - chat. We talked about the things that are involved in the home study, and had to dig out passports, driving licences, birth and marriage certificates to show her - luckily we could lay our hands on them straight away.

We talked about how we had found the prep group, and what else we'd like more information about. We talked about the reading that I've been doing and what she suggested a couple more books to look at, Primal Wound and Theraplay, both of which I've looked at, but the library doesn't have and they're not cheap! We discussed the birth mother and the adopted adult (not related) that we met on the prep course and how their stories had impacted us.

We talked about the child/ren that we would like to adopt. She seemed delighted that we didn't necessarily want a tiny baby and the fact that we had rationalised this out. Our argument is that we can't actually have a baby, adoption (from foster care) is different, and therefore we want to acknowledge the difference rather than hide it. We talked about birth families, and that there will always be a child shaped hole in the birth family, and a birth family shaped hole in the child/ren's lives.

Home Study Visit 2
We had another meeting with our social worker this morning. I still think that she is nice and knows her job really well. We spent some time doing general chit-chat and then moved onto our family trees/history.

M started with his and looked at grandparents, aunts & uncles, cousins and children of. The idea is that as well as sharing your family tree that we share our memories of the people, and how important they were when growing up and how important they are now. This lets the social worker know about your family life and what things were like growing up for you.

We spoke about his parent's and his sister (and her family) and how they have reacted to the news of us wanting to adopt. We talked about his mum's nervousness about it, but SW seemed really understanding of the difficulties that you can have with potential grandparents. We talked about our nieces and how much we have to do with them.


Home Study Visit 3
In our home study visit today we finished off talking about my family, which took most of the 2 hours!!!! I got to talk about how my parents met, and what it was like growing up with them and my brother and sister. I got to talk about how my brother's issues effected life (ADHD and dyslexic). I got to talk about my relationship with my sister; and how that has effected me over the years.

We also started talking about education - which will be picked up next week. M and I have very different stories when it comes to schooling. I went to lots of primary schools, a fee paying secondary school followed by a state secondary school. Michael went to 3 schools - a first, a middle and an upper school. All within walking distance of his home - in fact all within walking distance of our home - although the first and middle school are now primary schools!

Home Study Visit 4
In today's visit we talked about our education, finishing off from last week. And then we talked about employment; what jobs we had, why we'd done different jobs. And we talked generally about the future, what we planned to do when a child/ren are placed with us, and how we would cope financially. We also started to talk about how we might cope emotionally.

 Home Study Visit 5
Today's meeting went well, but it turned into the the one I was dreading. We started off with talents, interests and personality. We talked about our relationship, how we met (car crash!), how we got together, how we deal with stress, decision making etc. And then we turned to our route to adoption!

We spent a long while talking about infertility and how that has effected us and how we dealt with it. We talked about the fact that M is aware that sometimes i need him to listen to me rant not be a man and 'fix it'. We talked about what our options were, and why we decided against them. We spent time talking about the emotional impact of the IVF/ICSI cycles. We talked about miscarriage and what an awful time it was. Several things were mentioned and I was struggling with answering questions and the whole 7 years has turned my memory to mush.

Home Study Visit 6
When the social worker visited last, we looked mostly at our support network (our Ecomap). We spent a lot of time talking about who would give us what support, emotional, physical, and care. We spent time talking about friends, who we would phone and wouldn't say 'well you wanted to adopt' but instead say helpful things. We talked about which friends we would be happy to meet with a child who may be disruptive. We talked a lot about who would bolster us up, and who wouldn't understand.

We talked about therapeutic parenting. We talked again about our hopes and fears - it's telling that more of our fears are focused on the process now. She also had a look around our house.

This week it's individual visits, and referee visits. M has had his visit, as has our first referee - who described me as a stick of rock with 'mother' written all the way through. I think I'm grateful.


Home Study Visit 7

Today we spoke about what we found out when we visited the adopters, and what we thought about that. We then went onto what is possibly the worst thing so far, although we were expected it. We looked at some children's profiles and discussed what different terms meant. We started to think about what we could cope with.

She has left us with some more profiles to study, an old copy of Be my Parent and some information about children that she has worked for. Next week we will look in detail at the list of issues that we can deal with, or not, or deal with in a limited way - i.e. we would need more information about that issue before taking a decision about a child. It's a horrid thing to have to do - but we have to be realistic.



I haven't recorded anything about that last visit - but it was purely about discussing what we could and couldn't deal with... with some explanation from us and some from our SW. 

1 comment:

DEWHURST TOULSON said...

I'd hate to have been waiting around for her.
student link