I know we haven't been approved (yet) and I'm hoping all will go well on Thursday, but I've been hearing of quite a few matching/ linking processes falling through and I'm wondering what are the most usual reasons for this? If people are willing to share reasons they know of/ have experienced, this would be really useful - thanks.
I only had one potential link fall through - it was so early on that I didn't even know about it until it had fallen through. Apparently the little girl my social worker was talking to the family finder about suddenly withdrew into herself so they decided they needed more time for therapy and to look into what was causing the sudden change.
We unfortunately had 2 links fall through. The first were siblings - 2 boys 4 & 2 who we were linked with at the beginning of our home study. We had even found a school for the older boy and had been referring to them by name for almost 6 months before it was decided the level of their needs required a stay at home mum which I couldn't guarantee as was planning to return part time after a year so it was decided that we were not the right couple for these children - we were devastated.
We were then linked with a little boy of 13 months. He was portrayed as uncomplicated and meeting all milestones with no real concerns. He had not had a medical for more than 6 months and a medical less than 3 weeks before matching panel revealed he was significantly delayed and he had a very very small head. It was decided that he required lots of tests/scans which could take months and he was likely to have significant extra needs and it was a joint decision with our SW not to proceed. I needed some time to process everything that happened and was almost too scared to look at profiles again but glad I agreed to look at the next one as she is now our oldest daughter!
I still think about and wander what happened to those boys but now I know our daughters were meant to be our daughters. We were originally approved for siblings under 5 and we were originally wanting to adopt children over 1. We have ended up adopting an almost 11 month old and a 4 month old separately!
I am a believer in things happening for a reason and I think the heartbreak of the links not going ahead strengthened our relationship. It turns out my husband secretly wanted girls but didn't want me to be swayed by him!
First one, the family finder thought we were 'too old', plus preferred the little girl to be placed in a family that already had a child. I was gutted as I felt a very strong connection to the CPR (we didn't see photos or DVDs, just the report).
The second failed link (went to matching meeting with 2 other couples): reasons given were that there were some positive co-incidences in the background of another couple. I also wonder whether the physical match played a part - the LO had very distinctive colouring quite different from DH and I, and was very large and tall for his age whereas I and DH are both a small build. Our SW said that that child's SW was basically looking for reasons to say no as all three couples were strong 'contenders'.
The third competitive match was for our daughter. There were three couples, though one pulled out. I also happen to know that we were the oldest couple but still, we were chosen! So it goes to show that what might be a barrier for one SW isn't necessarily a problem for another. And it is a good match, feels right and the other decisions against us sort of made sense once we'd been matched with our lovely girl.
DH and I have been united in not wanting to hear specifics about a LO until we have at least been through approval panel (this Thursday, 5th June).
We know of a few couples from our training sessions who have had upsets for various reasons along the way: - have been told of potential matches only to find out in one case that the plan for a particular LO was no longer adoption; - in another case the LO (4yrs old) was not aware that he was even in care and thought FC was mummy!; - in another case the LO's needs were so much more extensive than at first thought - this from an Activity Day; - in 2 cases Approval Panel was delayed due to health reasons of prospective adopters.
We are waiting and hoping and trusting that our SW, who knows us quite well by now, will provide us with a good match. SW said she would probably show us a suitable profile of LO after Approval Panel. (Our LA doesn't do competitive matching.)
We are concerned though that the age range we are applying for (0 to 12 months) is too young and too narrow (although this is what we were encouraged to go for by our SW). And also the massive load of uncertainty re development/ special needs etc.
I had a link & visit by a s/w team a long way from the farm.... Lots of talks over the 'phone.... Made sure I told them how far it was.... Told them it would be quicker & very easy to fly.... They didn't ( or look at a map ) believe me..... Went from being a brilliant match on all fronts ( s/w words ) to ' just not quite right ' . When the decision came back they cited many trivial & unjust reasons to decline matching... Everything was 100% right ....But it was totally down to the fact that they hadn't done their homework re the journey travelling to the farm......
At the time I was gutted....but it taught me a valuable lesson about playing the game of the ' system' ..... that s/w got herself out of a hole completely by blaming me & saying the match wasn't viable... Looking back it deffo was ( even if it sounds odd by my description) but she clearly could not read a map & disregarded cheap flights.... She clearly thought it was too far to check up post matching pre order.... So glad she was bonkers coz otherwise my beautiful boys would not be mine... & they are the most perfect of matches dreamable?!? Xxx hope you don't have such a horrid experience.... You can get knock backs that have you reeling at the time but I guess sadly it is all part of this tuff tuff journey.....
xx. moo. Xx
Proud single adoptive mummeee to brothers baa & skweek 14 & 13 .....
Our curious george was just about to be linked to another couple, we had been lead to believe that we wouldn't stand a chance with a third adoption in under two years. We met up with FC for contact and she said look you are clearly smitten and you belong together why not go for it anyway... So we emailed our sw and they didn't pursue the link... I always felt so awful about that... We literally phoned the day before their linking meeting and I know how heartbroken I would have been if that was me... But I do believe george belongs with us... But don't let that freak you out... Some links sail through... We were linked to squirrel the first person we had enquiries about... And our sw prepped us to high heaven and warned us a million times not to get our hopes up... But we were already in love and this came through to the ff v strongly, our sw said she'd never seen such an informal friendly linking meeting and they asked us pretty much nothing, and started most if their comments with... When squirrel is placed with you, after matching panel etc Fingers crossed you have an experience like that Such exciting and terrifying times
Mummy to DD Squirrel Monkey (9), DD Howler Monkey (8), DS Curious George (7), DS Silverback (not quite 1)
Poor them, but maybe if FC are so invested that they don't feel they can let this lo go, they would never have been able to give him/her the emotional permission Los need to move on... And that can make things v hard... Hope their true lo is just around the corner, it must be so hard for them
Mummy to DD Squirrel Monkey (9), DD Howler Monkey (8), DS Curious George (7), DS Silverback (not quite 1)
Yes, CM, hopefully this will be the best thing for the LO, but just so feel for my friends. This is another question to ask our SW when she tells us about our possible LO once PO is granted..... "Are you sure FC doesn't want to adopt him?!!" :-)
Yes in two of our failed links we asked that question and the first one we were told FC do not wont to adopt we went to panel got a yes started 8 days of intro and on day 7 Found out FC had gone to high court to stop link and put in application to adopt so judge stopped intros devastated very long story short it was head line news court case went on for months FC disclosed our info to BP and we were told if we wonted to continue with match we would have to move home and proberly change our identity we very sadly withdrew a year later FC lost case and found to be not even suitable to FC both LO were eventually adopted out of area. Then next link only got as far as going to visit her Doctor and FC changed their mind and asked to adopt xx we very happy now with our girls but I am sure our intros with our girls was affected by our experience ie we found it impossible to trust them and I am sure they are very nice people. On a happier note about a 18 months age I was on a out of town adoption day thing and the two LO we had done intros with were their with their new mummy. It was a very chance meeting but the LOs are very identifiable I had lots of very mixed emotions but LO looked happy x
We have two girls they are both 7 now and have been with us since 2011
Thanks for sharing your experiences, Flowerpower, it sounds horrific :-( and what a roller coaster ride seeing the LOs you had previously had dealings with - just awful for you.
So there are lots of things for us to be aware of and ask our SW: - "Are you ABSOLUTELY sure FC does not want to adopt?!" - and we'll tell SW we are aware of this happening on several occasions. - How can we safe guard the FC not disclosing our info to BP? Can we limit what info we give to the FC? - We need to be able to trust the child's SW and FC - how can this trust be built and maintained?
I would say almost all FC are to be trusted and would never disclose personal info, we were just very unlucky and as I said they were deemed to be unsuitable to be FC after the crown court went much deeper in to some of the dealings they were involved in
We have two girls they are both 7 now and have been with us since 2011
No matching panel scheduled as yet, FP. SW is planning to tell us about a LO she has in mind for us at the end of this month. That is when his Court Date is. Once he has a PO then SW wants to tell us about him. All we know is that he is less than 12m old. I'm so aware of so many things that can go wrong with linking/ matching. We feel rather helpless really, which is not so different to how we've felt over the last 11 years with all the fertility issues, treatment etc. Oh well, here starts the waiting game! :-)
Thanks, Moo, will do. For now I am just reading, reading, reading and researching into attachment, minimising trauma of moves etc. And meeting up with other potential approved adopter friends, and friends who have already adopted.
Sometimes, just sometimes, a link falls through because the adopters decide, once they have met the child, that they are not the right parents for that child(or that the child is not the right one for them)
Scaredycats, there's no way to limit the information given to foster carers (if you're meaning your address) as they'll be coming to your house!
But rest assured, absolutely every foster carer I know is paranoid about protecting information like that. Our addresses are disclosed so often (has happened to me yet again just this week) that its one thing we take very seriously. And unlike the "professionals" who seem to think nothing of forgetting to remove my address from documents sent to birth parents I'm pretty sure my job would be at risk if I disclosed your address.
We are just waiting to hear if we are still linked to our two, we mets all people involved in their lives, and were pulled from matching panel for complicated reasons....In some strange way I am comforted to hear your stories, knowing there are people out there who know what we are going through....you have also helped us to see there is a light, and what will be will be for the best....the universe rules!!!
Fingers crossed Ruby. Having almost got to the first panel it's this next bit that I'm not looking forward to - the wait, uncertainty and managing expectations (of my dd really). Good luck with it Scaredycat.
Single prospective adopter with 14-year old BD, approved for a DD (5-8 yrs old)
Hi there, we have had lots of links fall through, even an official match. (Apologies to those who read this on the other site but it answers OP's enquiry).
We were cleared for adoption in October 2013. We said we wanted children that were school age and found out that most children in our authority were taken into care before two so there there were no school age children.
(when we were training and said that we wanted older children and yes, we would take boys, the 'most difficult to place' we were told that we would be 'jumped on.')
We were cleared and we were not jumped on. We had no links whatsoever so we joined Be My Parent, and Children Who Wait, very quickly. We didn't know there was a three month limit. We are not sure if there WAS a three month limit. We just heard nothing from our social worker so we joined.
We applied for children, and heard nothing. We were applying for 6 year old and 7 year old children…… we couldn't understand why nothing was happening….
We started tracking down the email addresses of the social workers we were emailing… and found out that our social worker was not getting back to them. So we started copying in every party every time we emailed, so they couldn't say they hadn't seen the emails….. and started to get somewhere. Our social worker started to engage.
We managed to scarpe some links.
First one was amazing. Perfect. Once our social worker had got back to them, they raced back and said we were perfect, all was good, let's move, let's get this moving.
A week later, they emailed me back to say that the foster carer had put in to adopt the children, so they would be going with them.
It was a nice email, but we were upset that they had been so positive… only to go with the foster carer. We sort of felt that something like that should have been sorted before the children were advertised. But hey, we are just adopters, after all.
Next two children were perfect, again. I rang and spoke to a very enthusiastic lady. She told me how wonderful the boys were. She then put on a serious tone. One of the boys presented as 'effeminate' would that be a problem? Could we cope? When I told her my partner was the same sex as me, she went quiet, then said they had other leads. They would get back to us. That link was dead.
No! Three weeks later, she rang to say all the others had dropped out. They really liked our profile, the other adopters had wanted the younger child but not the older. Were we still interested?
Yes we were! Yes.
So our PARs were sent over. We got the CPRs. We knew that we had a good match. We were told there was nobody else in the running, we would hear soon. It was a link!!!
We rang to find out what was going on. Social workers on holiday, busy, no go area. We ring, nobody available. Ill. Sick. Annual leave.
Every hour of those three weeks we checked the photos of the children, read the profile. We imagined the link. After all.. there was nobody else in the running….
Three weeks later, after being told we were perfect, I finally speak to the original lady. They had spoken to the effeminate boy who had said he wanted a mummy, so they didn't think that two men could parent him. He liked beads and bangles and stuff…. So he needed a mummy. A single mother would be fine. The lovely lady from the authority added, in her desultory email, that if a mummy couldn't be found, the two boys (who adored each other and were devoted to each other) would be split up and the older one put into long term foster care…..the other adopted.
It was a terrible time and we felt like we were being told that as two men we weren't as good as foster care… and… well.. we took a break. Hey, we are just adopters, after all.
We came back into the ring and saw another couple of children. That fell through. And another two… four weeks later that was over. We seemed to spend a lot of time crying and hugging each other.
Our social worker ate some cheese and biscuits in our house and blagged on about those adopters that hadn't adopted after a year because they were 'too picky' .. I wondered if he was referring to us.. he said no, we had just been unlucky.
We went to an activity day. We had made it clear that we only wanted a sibling pair, we weren't interested in singles. We made clear the ages. We arrived at the activity day and there wasn't a single pair that matched our very very wide criteria. By now it was way over three months and we were eligible to go on the National Adoption Register. We asked if we were going to be put on it…
In the end we just registered ourselves.
We then had a visit from our social worker. He strutted in, covering up the profiles he had brought.
He had brought 'our children'. He was sure of it.
He didn't want to show us. He needed to tell us first. It was like the Messiah bringing the recipe for KFC (no longer a special secret).
We listened to the profiles. Perfect.
He showed us the profiles. More than perfect.
Oh…… problem. No placement order. It was a breeze though, guaranteed. No worries, mate. Ding dong, sorted. Wink. Cheers.
Two months later, we were still waiting for 'our children' but nothing was happening. Legal stuff, you know. Judges. Sheez.
In the meantime we had seen two boys in Be My Parent. When our social worker came round, we showed them to him. He admitted that the bona fide 'our children' weren't going anywhere at the moment as it was legal minefield but he couldn't pursue this other link as we were linked already. We made it very clear that we wanted to pursue this new link and so he agreed to pursue.
It was blindingly quick. The boys' social worker came round and we were linked
We went to matching panel in July 2014, nine months after approval. We were matched and introductions were set for the first week in September.
As the first week of September approached, we couldn't seem to get through to our social worker or the social workers of the children we were adopting….. to find out what was happening with introductions. We called and we called.. Every day. We left messages. Then, eventually our social worker called.
Two days before introductions.
Now, you have to realise that we had decorated the rooms by then. We had bought clothes and toys. We had dedicated our house and our lives to these children, that we were matched with.
I had handed in my notice to work.
Two days before introductions we were told that.. ONE WEEK PREVIOUSLY.. the birth mother had been granted leave to appeal to be reassessed.
The adoption was on hold.
We were upset. We grieved. We sobbed. But hey.. we are just adopters. It might have been nice to have learned about this A WEEK BEFORE we did.. but we are just adopters.
I went back to work, the lady that had taken my job for a year was sacked. We waited for the legal process to take place.
It dragged on and on.
1. The birth mother was able to appoint an amazing barrister.
We were told there was no hope. The adoption was over. The children were going back to the mother.
2. The barrister appointed a pro-family social worker to 'assess' the mother. The assessment came back positive; BM had changed and could take back the children.
We started to be told to back off. Our social worker started to send us new profiles. We grieved but ignored the new profiles.
3. The judge ordered an assessment of the children… what would be the psychological effect if they were reintroduced?
The report came back. It said that reintroducing the children was risky, probably catastrophic……… this from an independent social worker, not connected to the court or authority…
Back to court. We felt sure this would be it..
The judge ordered a psychological profile of the mother.
We were told by all our social workers that this could go on for years, it looked like it was not going to happen, we should walk away.
So we did.
By now we had committed 8 months to this process. We looked at new profiles. None of them were right.
And then it happened.
I got an email through to say that a new sibling group had been added. I swiped to delete. I wasn't interested. Somehow my swiped didn't delete but took me through to their profile.
It was our boys.
If you have never felt strips of your heart being slowly torn away, you have no idea what I felt in that moment. As each strip was torn away, as I sank to the floor, I began to believe that I would never love again. Our boys were looking at me, out of my ipad. My heart was being made useless. It was my own fault. It was my doing.
We had abandoned them.
Every adult that had ever come in to contact with those two boys had let them down. And we had just added ourselves to the list.
When my partner came in to find out what I was wailing about, when he saw the picture, he cried and handed me the phone. After all the years we have been together, he didn't need to tell me what to do. I rang our social worker and he answered. I said we had made a mistake. We wanted to pursue our original match.
We were re-linked.
The final report came in four weeks later, a lot quicker than expected. The psychological report on the mother was damning. She was incapable of putting the needs of her children first. There was a whole raft of other stuff, which I don't want to divulge as it would be too traceable.
Her barrister told her she didn't stand a cat's tit in hell of succeeding but she wanted her day in court and last Friday the session was held.
Despite four independent fresh assessments of the mother's inability to parent, almost one year to the day after we first pursued this match, the Judge sent the children back to the mother.
I haven't read the full judgement, yes I am sure there is stuff I am not party to. I am sure the local authority didn't come out well.. which is probably why, almost a week later, not one of those 'professionals' has rung to see how me or my partner are.
Earendil, it really is just shocking what has happened in your situation; shows huge commitment and resilience on yours and your partner's part which I know will be feel irrelevant right now. Of the few cases which have been reported in recent times, it seems that there is more of a theme, often down to the significant failings on the parts of the LAs; but your situation sounds crazy: with 4 negative assessments - what was the Judge thinking? Ok, keep the boys in LTFC if there's reasons to keep strong links with BPs but to return them to BPs with such a backdrop - how could the judge justify that in the boys' best interests? Is the LA going to appeal?? Either the parenting will become at best "good enough" or at worst, the boys will be back in care and potentially too old, dependent on their ages and experiences. Very sad for them and of course for you too. x