Saturday, November 02, 2013

My head is about to explode

So, trip went well, it was odd to not be a parent, essentially, for two weeks, and also slightly odd to come back, Baby Spouse has spent most of the few hours since I came back wanting to sit on my lap for a story. Oh, and headbutting me in the (still slightly painful) nose owing to his excitement at playing peek-a-boo under the blanket on the couch. And I'm jet-lagged. But apart from that. Mr Spouse seems to have coped admirably.

Big news. We found out that Nella is pregnant again. It is very very early but it is already massively complicated of course. We are not sure what we want to do. In particular, Mr Spouse is not sure though I am wary about many of his issues too.  He doesn't feel ready for what would be a very rushed process. 

He's worried about all the post-birth issues and paperwork and hassle in-country (this time with added toddler) and in particular about birth father issues as she is not sure who that is this time (and it was hard enough with the same issues with just one candidate last time).  Those, plus Nella's personal issues, could mean that we go through a whole (difficult but rushed, but also quite long compared to most other matching periods) process only to fail and not bring home a baby.

He's also worried about himself personally (as he has some health issues, and says "I just feel old!", and this has come at a rather uncertain time for the health issues) and his ability to deal with all this stress again. It is also a bad time for my work but they have messed me around so much that I no longer care about that at this stage.

Nella's personal issues mean that she needs a lot of support, and she has already been calling us with various dramas. We just don't feel qualified to give her all the emotional support she needs, and we know this is a long match, and we also know that we are not really allowed to just sign up with an agency that will support her practically through the pregnancy, before we have our UK home study.  She has said that she is thinking of placing the baby, and she is thinking of placing it with us if she does, and we don't want to either expend all our energies trying to explain to her what we aren't allowed to do for her - or have her think we're uncaring because we aren't allowed to do things she'd like us to.

And there is the issue of the UK home study. Last time it took about 18 months before our paperwork was ready. It should be a lot less this time, but even so the time it should take on paper is far, far too long - technically we could just be ready before the due date, but unless there is something that can be speeded up it will be very tight and very stressful. I have suggested we try and find out whether there is any possibility of speeding it up.

I, personally, would be ready to go ahead with this despite all of this. We did say that we would not adopt from the US again but part of that was the waiting and the uncertainty - we still have some of the latter - and part of it was that it would not be an advantage to have a birth family in yet another location that we were in contact with - and this wouldn't suffer from those problems, plus the new baby would be Baby Spouse's birth sibling which is really the main point here.

So I have no idea what is going to happen here. I would go ahead with it, if it were just my decision, and do our darndest to get the home study ready and the paperwork sent to the US and if it started to appear completely impractical - we'd have a home study ready for a future adoption (probably not a brand new adoption from the US).  

It's really hard to talk to anyone about this, too, even other adopters. If it was just a UK case, then we would be pushed through home study, but it wouldn't matter if it wasn't quite ready in time, it would just be a case of a few days/weeks of foster care after the birth, and we wouldn't have any responsibility to the birth parents beyond perhaps a few meetings.  If it was just a US case, we could find an agency and sign up with them and they could look after her while we got our home study together (which would be a lot quicker), and we could probably just have a private arrangement (though we wouldn't want to do that owing to our inability to support her properly).  We would, still, have birth father issues and in-state travel and paperwork issues (I've heard of families being stuck for paperwork longer than we were, just for a domestic adoption).

But as I say, it is not just my decision.  Mr Spouse is, he confesses, very attracted by the idea of another littler Baby Spouse, who would be we assume in some ways like the current Baby Spouse. But he doesn't sound very attracted by any of the rest of this.


Sarah Hill said...

What a massive decision to have presented to you, with so many things to consider and think about. It must be very hard, but take the time you can to think every part through is all I can suggest, which I'm sure you will.

Thank you for sharing on the Weekly Adoption Shout Out.

Claudia said...

woah.... huge, big, crazy deal.

The one thing that I think might get UK social services moving on this is that it is a bio sibling of Baby Spouse's. Even UK social services know that birth siblings should be kept together, right??? I can see this as the one situation where they would actually get themselves in gear to do things fast.

I'm not at all sure about adopting again, but I've always thought that the one situation in which we would both say yes, despite all our doubts and all the difficulties, would be another bio sibling of our twins. A bio sibling is the most incredible thing for an adopted child to grow up with, and we're already seeing how much it means to ours. On all the days (and there are MANY, and you witnessed one not so long ago) when my kids are bouncing off each other and I wish that I could dial down the stress to only one child... I know that this craziness is the price that we pay for them to have someone to be biologically connected to. If G wants to talk to someone about the joys / perils of parenting two little bio sibs, he can call Jay :)

oh, and welcome home!

missohkay said...

Yes, so terribly terribly complicated. I hope you and mrspouse reach the same page, step one. Then you can work together to get the stars to align, if that's what you decide. Best of luck!

Anonymous said...

I read this earlier today and have been musing. Big news indeed! I was thinking how keen I would be in your situation to adopt this child - and then it occurred to me that this may not necessarily be Nella's final pregnancy.
Your poor head. Hugs!

DrSpouse said...

You are dead right HFF, but we are at least agreed that more than two would be too many!

Anonymous said...

I don't know if you would even need a home study or an adoption agency involved at all if birth-mom already knows you and has chosen you. You might just need a lawyer.

Rachel said...

Wow. That is huge. Good luck.

Twangypearl the Elastic Girl said...

Hmm, much to consider!

Good luck finding your way through - sometimes sitting with it for a bit helps to see what the thing to do is - of course this is complicated by the time considerations.

You'll get there.

Anonymous said...

I found your blog through the OAB Interview Project. I have to agree with Claudia. I see how important DS's bio siblings are to him. They live in another state and are basically parented by his birthmom, but if anything were to happen to her, or she were to become pregnant and want to place again... DS would definitely want his siblings to be with him. I don't know that we *could* make that happen, for many reasons, but *if* it were possible, we'd definitely have to take his feelings into account. At the very least, we'd have to ensure that we could keep in contact with them.