Archive | October 2015

I am an adopted teen. Hear me roar.

I better start by apologising for my bad language in this post. I hope you won’t be too offended or blame mum for letting me write this – Beeswax.

So this week according to my mum, has been National Adoption Week. Why did she tell me this? Well I wanted to know why I keep seeing a load of horse shit “Too old at 4?” adverts which were really pissing me off.

Typical social workers and adults who think they know what they are talking about. They make my skin crawl.

Mum says that it is not supposed to be seen as a negative advert but one that will hopefully encourage adopters to consider adopting “waiting older children”.

Wait what? Why don’t they just go the full hog and shove us in glass dustbins and display us in the street? Don’t we deserve more respect than that?

I know I would have hated to see this when I was living with my foster carer with my little brother. I already thought I was on the scrapheap and the only way I would be getting another family, is if someone fell in love with Buzzbee. We were a package deal.

Oh and I really hate it when professionals advertise us kids as “waiting for a forever family”. I was not waiting for a family. I had a family and whether I was seeing them or not they will still be my family forever. What I wanted was a place to call home – my own bedroom, my own bed and my own Xbox.

Why do professionals always think they know what is best for us?

While I am on a roll and having a rare episode of openly voicing my opinions to people other than my parent and while mum is letting me hijack her blog post this week. There are a few questions that people are always asking me and I try and give a polite answer too, which actually get on my tits. Mum says I can add them to this post and ‘within reason’ put the answers I really want to put.

Why did they take you away from your family?

Oh that’s right! Blame the bloody kids, why don’t you. It is none of your business and even if it was important for you to know. What makes you think, I would trust you enough to share that with you when I barely want to talk about it with mum and dad?

If you could see your birth parents again. Would you?

What do you think you idiot. Wouldn’t you want to hurl abuse at the people who let you down most in the world?

How did it feel to change schools all the time?

You obviously really don’t know me. I have only been to 3 schools and I wasn’t excluded from any of them, they were safe bets for me. It sucked at first to leave my first school but my TA came with me to my new school and only stopped working with me when I moved to my current school which lets me do what I want all week.

Isn’t it wonderful that you parents wanted to adopt you and your brother? What is the best bit about being adopted?

Oh yes they receive their sainthood next week! God you are patronising! Mum and dad hate when people say that to them. What the hell do you mean ‘what is the best bit’? None of it is that great, but I suppose it gives you a proper chance at life.

What do you call your real mum?

Well that does depend I have two REAL mums obviously so which one do you mean? If you mean biological. Well that would be every possible nasty spiteful word under the sun but my adoptive mum on the other hand, she is known as mum of course.

Why do you look like your adoptive parents, isn’t that weird?

To be honest I am not really sure I know. it’s a bit weird isn’t it but then my dad looks like my grandad and he is his son-in-law. Go figure!

Surely you don’t like your parents. They must really annoy you?

Now again it depends which set you are on about. If it is biological, I would really enjoy to see them pushed off of a cliff, but if it is adoptive. DO YOU WANT A PUNCH? Overall you seem to be missing the fact that I am a teenager. I am meant to not like my parents.

Is your brother related to you or is he one that was already there?

He is blood and all very much my bro. Parcel Force delivered us to the designated address in one neat package on the agreed delivery day.

choice for life

That’s it.  I will probably never do this again but if I can’t do it in ‘National Adoption week 2015’, when can I?

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“All the king’s horses”

I think I need to apologise in advance before I continue writing this weeks’ #WASO post. There is a very strong chance that this post will not turn out quite as I want it to or how the words are playing out in my head, and will instead end up sounding self-indulgent and pitiful. Over the past few weeks, my energy and motivation to write has been severely lacking and my ability to complete the most basic tasks has been quite frankly, an uphill struggle.

humpty

For weeks, months (okay, probably a couple of years) I have been treading water and trying to fool myself that I am doing Ok and my frequent state of melancholy can be directly connected to the latest instalment of the boys’ chaos and mania, or due to feeling overwhelmed by my personal high expectations of myself as a mother, wife, daughter, friend… to put things more simply! Humpty Dumpty has slipped off her wall, but instead of admitting she could do with a supportive hand to get back up on her wall, she has repeatedly, time and time again tried to claw her way back up the wall on her own, because she has become too concerned about how ‘all the king’s horses and all the king’s men’ will judge her.

The problem is every time ‘Humpty’ has slipped back down and has not had the confidence to ask for help or confide in others, she has become frustrated with herself and the self-imposed isolation she has brought on herself.

Okay back to reality. There is part of me that is questioning whether the answer is to make an appointment with our GP and ask her to prescribe “happy pills”, but realistically this is not an option and I know she will be reluctant (as would I) to do this because of past history. In any case I am not sure (for me) that this would be the best way to deal with the effects of the secondary trauma.

No, the only answer I can see, is to once and for all get ALL my family the assessments help and support we all desperately need. And, to do this I am going to have to stand up and face it head on. I can no longer let the opinions of ‘Negative Nellies’ and ill-informed, narrow-minded individuals and professionals from the past, control our future.

So where do I start?

In the past I have unsuccessfully tried to explain/describe verbally what it is like to parent Waxy and Buzz on a day to day/hour to hour basis, and explain the impact that has on us all. It has always fallen on deaf ears or it has been met with criticism and a dismissive tone – “reading too much into it”, “all siblings do that”, “if you weren’t so stressed than the boys would be more settled” – You get the idea.

The only answer that made sense to me, was for me to put it in writing and hope that if professionals read it in black and white, they maybe will begin to listen and take the situation seriously, and the Adoption Support Fund application form is just the place to start.

A couple of weeks ago I commented on Twitter of my irritation that our Post Adoption Social Worker had sent us the ASF form and asked us to fill it in as best as possible, despite us believing she had started doing this herself weeks before.

Filling in the forms for the boys was painful. Seeing written down on paper the reality of what we are all living with every day, was breaking my heart, but by the time we had filled in as much as realistically possible and sent them back to our PASW, Bumble and I were feeling oddly empowered and both our heads have never been clearer on what we need for ourselves and from professionals, to give the boys the best chance for the future.

After a few more timely nudges, Matilda (new PASW) is finally jumping into action, and after a brief visit last week to obtain the boys’ view and being rewarded with a trauma bond floor show for her “efforts” from them both (quite unusual for them to do this in the presences of professionals), she has asked us to consider allowing a specialist centre to asses our family’s attachment need, but Bumble and I are going to have to think very hard about it before deciding whether we want to proceed with it – if we do proceed, it has been made clear, we will be expected to act on the specialist’s recommendations. Quite frankly, the thought of this scares me to death and not just because my trust in professionals was destroyed a long time ago.

Only time will tell if the help from all the king’s horses and all the king’s men, can prevent Humpty from ending up as scrambled egg.

The Weekly Adoption Shout Out