My first child was adopted will it happen again

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Mentalhealthmatters
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Joined: Fri Apr 26, 2019 5:31 pm

My first child was adopted will it happen again

Post by Mentalhealthmatters » Sun May 05, 2019 2:19 pm

Hi please no judgements I’m looking for advice I’ll give some back story.
I fell pregnant with my daughter when I was 16 and homeless I was in a DV relationship very unstable and immature. I had my daughter at 17 in care and I passed all my assessments but I was diagnosed with personality disorder and that led me to have a breakdown which initially led my daughter to be removed. At the last hearing in June 2018 I ask my daughter to be left where she was and adopted by the people she was with she’d been then over a year and had a bond with them. Moving on to now. I have my own flat I attend therapy for my past as well as my personality disorder I’ve been with my partner 1 year his never hurt me at all and we are getting married next year. I have matured a lot and see the world as an adult now rather then a child which i was when I had my daughter. Will social services removed my next baby because of my mental health?

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 2:57 pm

Re: My first child was adopted will it happen again

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed May 29, 2019 4:07 pm

Dear mentalhealthmatters,

I am sorry for the delay in responding to your post.

I am sorry to hear about your daughter being adopted. This occurred after you had a breakdown when you were diagnosed with a personality disorder.
You were very young at the time (a child yourself). Your circumstances were very difficult. You were suffering domestic violence which is very traumatic for survivors and may have been the main reason your daughter was initially placed in foster care. You were in care yourself. However, even so you had the strength to pass children services assessments.

Things have improved a lot for you since then. You want to know whether there has been enough change in your circumstances for children services not to remove your next baby. You are particularly concerned about your mental health diagnosis.

Children services may be worried about a mental health illness if it impacts on a parent’s ability to care for their children. For example, if a child was to witness self- harming, this could be emotionally abusive. Or if a parent is too unwell to care for a child’s health or emotional needs then a child risks being neglected. Children services would look at ways of providing support or encouraging parents to seek the health support and treatment they need.

So usually, the most important thing with any mental health diagnosis is to get the recommended treatment so that the chances of having another mental health crisis are reduced and any symptoms are treated.

It sounds like you are doing exactly this. You have been having therapy to treat or manage your symptoms as well as helping you deal with the trauma you have suffered in the past. You could check through the psychologist’s report that contains the original diagnosis to make sure you are having the recommended therapy for the right length of time. Often, therapy may need to take place for many months.

Also, you could speak to your therapist and ask what she thinks about you having a baby in the future? When does she think you might be ready? What other mental health support do you need first, if any? Do you need a further psychological assessment?
What support is available locally for pregnant or new mothers?

Are you getting counselling and support around your daughter being adopted? This may have been offered to you when your daughter was adopted.
Domestic violence was also a major concern for children services. You are in a safe relationship now. (You have not suffered any domestic violence) and you are planning to getting married next year.

Did you get support to help you deal with the domestic violence you suffered? Was this recommended by children services? Usually, when a person has suffered domestic violence, children services recommend they attend a course and support from domestic violence support services such as the freedom programme to help prevent suffering domestic violence in the future. Here is information for mothers about domestic violence and children’s services.

I assume you can also access support from the leaving care team? Could you ask your personal adviser about asking children services about whether you need any further support before you go ahead and have another baby? Become is a charity who advise care leavers about support.

If you go on to be pregnant in the future, then your midwife or GP would refer to children services for an assessment due to the past care proceedings. Here is information about assessments . As you can see, the assessment process will also include dad being assessed as well.

At the end of the assessment, children services may close the case. But sometimes, when there has been past proceedings (but not always) they may want to be further involved at a child in need level or through the statutory child protection process, if they were still worried that your mental health could be harmful to your child, for example.
However, by accessing the support now-which you are doing, you are both treating your mental health but showing that you can work with professionals and are changing your circumstances for the better.

I hope this advice helps but please post again if you have any questions.

Best wishes,
Suzie

Mentalhealthmatters
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Joined: Fri Apr 26, 2019 5:31 pm

Re: My first child was adopted will it happen again

Post by Mentalhealthmatters » Mon Jun 17, 2019 6:30 pm

Hi Suzie sorry for long reply
I thought I’d dig a little deeper into why my daughter was adopted and what social saw (as I’ve already said I was 16 when I fell pregnant and 17 when I had my beautiful daughter) what they say happened was
my ability to parent
My ability to protect/ safeguard baby from emotional and physical harm
My ocd thoughts (it was my breakdown of the thoughts found to be a side effect of medication)
Chaotic lifestyle
Mental health

Now flip it 3 years (1 year since she was adopted)
I have a job (barmaid/chef)
A stable home (nearly 2 years)
A stable partner (nearly 2 years)
I’m currently doing EMDR therapy (have done 3 sessions out of 5 so far)
Mental health team have been poop so I took on the challenge of helping myself I go to see my gp who comments on the improvement of my mental health. I have a care plan me and my partner made for my bad bad days.
I have a dbt book which isn’t the therapy but it’s good enough while searching for it.
I have a good relationship with my family again (nan,grandad uncle auntie) they are a huge support.
I have started recently having therapy for what happened with my daughter. I can own up and respect what concerns there was.
I’m just scared they won’t give me a chance to prove things are different? I’m so scared and my anxiety is through the roof Ive had what looks like a very very faint POSITIVE pregnancy test. So scared I couldn’t go through losing another baby.

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: My first child was adopted will it happen again

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed Jul 17, 2019 3:23 pm

Dear Mentalhealthmatters

Thanks for posting again.

I think I have already given you as much information as I can about how children’s services might view the situation if you have another pregnancy.

As previously explained, children’s services will look at your current situation when considering what involvement if any they could have. It does not mean that your baby will be removed from your care as they will also consider support that might help if it is considered necessary. The best thing you can do, difficult though it might be, is to think positively about your pregnancy and ensure that you attend all antenatal appointments and keep yourself well. Please look at the links in my previous post which I think you might find helpful.

I am including a link here to our young parents website which will provide you with information about how best to work with children’s services should you need to.

My suggestion is that you continue to engage with services to make yourself well. You have a good support network. Try not to worry as this is likely to make your mental health deteriorate.

You say you have had a faint positive on your pregnancy test, should it be more positive you ought to try and have a good outlook and continue doing all you are doing to address your mental health needs.

Should you wish to speak to an adviser, please telephone our free confidential advice line on 0808 801 0366. The advice line is poen from 9.30am to 3pm Monday to Firday (except Bank Holidays)

I hope this is helpful.

Best wishes

Suzie

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