This is a guest post from Misbah AKA @foodymama blogging at foodymama.blogspot.co.uk about food surprisingly enough. She also happens to be an adoptive mum who really wanted to have her say about something none food related so I said she could say it here….
It’s a well known figure of speech “to go with your gut feeling” and after speaking with Sarah, about certain experiences this past year with my son, that my husband & I are in the process of adopting, and having that gut feeling that something wasn’t / isn’t quite right with my boy, I thought I would blog about it to share my experience.
My son R & his sister A were placed with us on the 21st March 2011. R was described as a lively, happy, energetic & talkative boy. Our introductions with them both lasted for 2 weeks, in the whirlwind of excitement, nerves and forming a bond with them, he seemed just as he was described.When they were placed with us again the first few weeks seemed to be all fun and busy, it probably wasn’t until we were about 8 months in that things just weren’t getting any better at all in regards to R’s attention, concentration & his ability to just carry out basic things as getting dressed, and poor memory. There was and still is the issue of the constant need for attention and to talk, and by that I mean literally on the go, some days even now I loose my voice as he just does nothing but talk. These issues are just the tip of the iceberg so to speak, there is so much going on with my boy and it does worry me.
So with that gut feeling of ‘this is not right’ I raised my concerns with the children’s SW, and I’d end up getting responses such as “yeah you just need to keep being consistent & repeating it” or “well you don’t really have experience of boys” – to which I asked how much and how long could I keep repeating the same things, and how could she say I’ve no experience with boys when I have 3 younger brothers , 7 nephews, one of which has Aspergers. I just felt that our concerns weren’t being taken seriously, and to put it blunt the children’s’ SW was doing nothing but undermining my worries and we where getting nowhere fast.
After 3 months of the SW doing next to nothing to see what help we could get I went down the route of speaking with our GP, family members & friends I then raised the issue in our LAC review and thankfully our SW & the IRO saw how stressed we were getting so measures were drawn up for theraplay, assessment of ASD, assistance from MAPS and communication with School etc and even then its took from November 2011 to Oct 2012 for us to get some form of help and support. We finally started Theraplay in Oct last year and our theraplay worker seems to be fully on board and sees what we are up against when it comes to R.
It just disappoints me that the one professional we should be able to rely on is the same professional that hasn’t been on board to get the help that R needs, and has contradicted herself on countless occasions. It seems as if my husband and I have done all the chasing for support and if we were listened to rather than being dismissed and told that we weren’t used to him or that it was our first full on experience of parenting a boy, we could have got the support a lot quicker.
It’s also been a massive help to be able to talk to a brilliant community of adoptive mums that I’ve met on twitter who have been / are going through the same situation. Drawing on their experiences have shown me that I’m not alone, and that I’m not going crazy and making all these concerns up in my head.
So for all the adoptive parents out there, whatever stage you are at in your journey, if you feel in your gut that something isn’t right then voice it and voice it and voice it till you are heard because it’s taken me over a year and I’m finally being listened to and I’m going to keep on at them till my boy gets all the help he rightly deserves.
I’m sure Misbah would be very grateful to hear from you so if you have any words of advice or support please comment.