So here I was, still numb, confused and fucked off…..
I didn’t know and worryingly neither did anyone else.
We spoke to ‘the manager’ who seemed confused and embarrassed but committed to our cause. I explained that given the incompetence of the social worker we had welcomed into every avenue of our lives, including the sex dungeon I teased her about, it seemed only right and completely understandable we no longer wanted her dealing with our dream of being given the right to parent. One thing that oh so many take for granted.
It suddenly dawned on me that we hadn’t heard from her. Surely she had been told what had happened the day before? About the state we left in? Her sheer negligence? and niente, nothing:
not anything; no single thing: “I said nothing” ·
synonyms: not a thing · not a single thing · not anything ·
having no prospect of progress; of no value: “he had a series of nothing jobs”
not at all: “a man who cared nothing for her”.
In one single breath, everything I ever dreamed of and planned for had been thrown into question. It wasn’t were we fit anymore but were those around us?
This seemed incomprehensible. How could our ability to parent, love and provide a safe place to grow be based other people.
Over the coming weeks this was like a germinating seed inside me, something that was growing, taking over, occupying every waking and sleeping moment. It grew into every part of my thoughts like some filthy infection. It occupied every part of everything, everyday, all day. It pushed our relationship, rocked my newly founded marriage, all of a sudden everything was thrown into question and without a single ounce of remorse or apology from those who were causing such life changing implications.
a regretful acknowledgement of an offence or failure: “we owe you an apology” ·
synonyms: expression of regret · one’s regrets · amende honorable ·
a formal expression of regret at being unable to attend a meeting or social function: “Robert can’t come and sends his apologies”
(an apology for)
a very poor or inadequate example of: “we were shown into an apology for a bedroom”
synonyms: travesty of · excuse for · inadequate example of ·
another term for apologia.
synonyms: defence · apologia · justification · vindication
We were told we now had to wait for the risk assessment to be carried out not on us but regarding a ‘third party’. How were they able to assess the risk without asking how we would handle the risk? Apparently we had no right to the risk assessment or its contents, simply based on the outcome would we be allowed to panel for our third time: YES or NO?
So we waited. It felt like someone had found a loose thread that they were very slowly pulling, everything we/I had dreamed of was being unravelled around me in a manner that allowed me no control. Nothing to hold on to.
We felt so alone, more alone than ever before, alone in a way that no one could comprehend.
Weeks passed, and again nothing, so we waited with this impending cloud hanging over us. What did we do if we were told no? Where did we go from there? How do we move forward with a childless life when its the one thing we’ve both dreamed of? How was the behaviour and lifestyle choices of others rocking the very core of who we are and what we’ve dreamt of and worked so very hard for. Reams now of questions we hadn’t answered before. Questions I had given no thought to. Answerless questions.
‘The manager’ informed us she was now handing us our to our next social worker – the one who would also be dealing with the risk assessment.
The conversation ended with “At this stage I wouldn’t like to say if you will make it to panel or not” So just to be clear here if the ‘risk assessment’ that had nothing to do with us but the ever illusive “3rd parties” was not approved, we wouldn’t be going to panel, and we wouldn’t be adopting, ever. Refusal based on safeguarding issues would retired us from our dream of becoming parents. I cannot and wont try to put into words the feelings you are left with knowing this. Im sure you can begin to imagine.
Our new social worker arrived later that week. The car flew into and over the gravel drive and was parked haphazardly, out walked my linen wearing mother earth slightly dishevelled, poorly parked, fruit tea drinking social worker. She had the unenviable task of re writing our car crash of a PAR for our second panel should we be given he chance, plus carrying out the risk assessment.
Two weeks later we were called to say the risk assessment had been approved and panel was happening again. It felt like being hit by a bus.
Relief, excitement, anxiety, trepidation, anger, resentment, towards ourselves, each other, family, panel, the professionals who had failed us so monumentally – a complete cocktail of emotions that had now become beyond exhausting.
The night before the day panel had to receive our SECOND PAR we were emailed a copy to read! FINALLY someone who could see the misfortunate and unfortunate ‘circumstances’ that surrounded us and which had caused this traumatic experience actually enabled us to be better equipped parents. A much clearer sense of all the things we didn’t want to become as a couple, as loving compassionate human beings and hopefully as parents.
A completely different experience and one that highlighted the importance to us of having a social worker who “got us” rather than what and what and who surrounded us from a far
So to panel we went …. AGAIN