Complex journey

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:19 am

What a complex journey I am on......and I am wondering whether to just stop!!

I don't want to go back over all of my story but I had gone through the whole assessment process and, at the last minute, the decision was made to leave the child in her current place net due to he being settled and happy ( she had been in the "temporary" placement for the duration of the court case which ended up lasting over 18 months)
I had had contact with the child, which had gone well, though not without issues of anxiety due to the mother telling her she didn't want her to come and live with me!

I have sent Christmas, Easter , birthday presents for all three siblings who are in separate placements and have stayed in touch with CS.

I called this week to ask about sending an Easter gift ( probably money) for each child. The SW said that was fine but then told me that the child I had been going to take care of had not accepted my present at Christmas. She is 8. She had asked her carer who it was from and then refused to open it!!! The SW said anything I send would be offered to the child but kept safe for later if the child didn't want it.

Now I feel like I am contributing to her emotional pain, although I KNOW ( as does the SW) that the child has been damaged by a third party!!!

I know it is my decision, but I wondered if anyone could give me some advice. I am really torn. Will she grow up and develop in time and realise eventually that I actually do care? Will she be better off just left alone? How do I communicate my care for her? I sent a really lovely present that she would have loved but it won't be any use to her if she doesn't get it till she is 18!!!!

I know many of you are on the other side, caring for children who may be on the receiving end of presets etc. My experiences when I met her foster carer was that she didn't facilitate our relationship at all and part of me wonders how she is handling it all. My UPMOST concern is for the child's wellbeing. I know she is happy and settled and maybe that should be enough!!??
Thanks, in advance!

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Robin D
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Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 12:58 pm

Re: Complex journey

Postby Robin D » Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:15 am

Keep sending. Sooner or later it will be important to the child, even if it is as an adult. Don't worry that 'it'll be of no use to her'. That isn't the point. The point is that regular cards and gifts are tangible proof that you do care.

You are not adding to the pain, although you might be jogging a reminder.

I'd avoid sending money or giftcards if you possibly can. The first is too easily lost and the second can expire before they are spent.
Former F&F carer, foster carer, adopter and respite carer for umpteen children. Now retired and when with kids, making sure they 'go home' at the end of the day.

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 11:59 am

Thank you Robin! I do think that her pain is clearly because her ( very happy) memories are being jogged of the time I was in her life as her Godmother and one of those "adopted aunties" many of us can recall,
The SW said to me that she wanted to "unpick" what had happened and how things had deteriorated. Thankfully, the SW supervised the contact I had with the child and witnessed the very strong, happy memories she held. Two weeks later she was saying she didn't want to see me anymore and became distressed. I don't hold a lot of confidence that the SW will actually ever get round to exploring the issue!!!
Very sad. But thank you for your advice! I was going to send money rather than vouchers but I take your point!

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:08 am

Well...... Good news at last.
One of the children has asked to see me again.
So, in ten days time, we are meeting up for lunch along with the social worker as a first step towards more meaningful contact. It is 26 months since I saw the children, 25 since they're were first removed from their home!
Feeling happy, nervous but I have no doubt it will go well.
And it is a start!!!

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: Complex journey

Postby Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Mar 29, 2016 11:44 am

That's lovely news Roma1. I hope it is a really positive experience for you both.

Suzie
FRG Adviser

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Fri Apr 01, 2016 7:59 pm

Thank you suzie and Irene. Heard from the SW this morning and she said the child is "excited". So am I.
This hS needed to happen for a long time , for the child's benefit. I am sure it will be an enjoyable time. Lots to catch up on! X

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Fri Apr 08, 2016 1:47 pm

Had a lovely day, just slotted back in like old times
As usual this particular child was full of chat, wanted to talk about all that had gone on and made several direct comments regarding sibling bullying that had gone on regarding me and the particular impact this had had on the younger child
Very sad - but the SW took it all on board and said she would deal with it
Ongoing....... The SW is happy for me to have unsupervised contact which we can sort out between ourselves and the foster carers, including overnight stays!
Wondering how often we could offer this but I would like to make it a fairly regular thing! But also happy to play it by ear and let it develop!
It must be very hard for the mother who is only allowed one hour a month supervised contact! But I know that is for a reason!

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Sat Apr 09, 2016 7:33 pm

Thanks irene! And thanks to you particularly for all your advice/ support along the way!

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Fri Oct 28, 2016 9:31 pm

It's been a while coming as for one reason or another my contact didn't go ahead in the summer holidays!
But today we had supervised contact!
The child, now aged 14, was absolutely delighted, especially as my husband came with me! We travelled 130 miles to see her. I think she was overwhelmed!!!
We have had to be patient and , most importantly, prove ourselves to the CS.
Roll on next time!!!

Roma1
Posts: 89
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:56 am

Re: Complex journey

Postby Roma1 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:14 pm

Thanks Irene - my post was meant to read "unsupervised contact"
It was lovely
We went for a proper grown up meal ( instead of McDonalds) - and she was sooooo happy
We can now arrange contact directly with her carer, who texted me last night and said the child was "so happy after seeing us"
She wants to come up here to our house to stay overnight ( also agreed by SW) - maybe we will have to wait until Feb half term for that but even so, it's great for her to have something to look forward to and a bit of Normality!
She said to us "I am better off in care because I am less depressed"
Bless her!! :)


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