After years of talking about adoption, we finally decided that we would phone Salford to see if it was possible. Being a gay male couple, we expected to get a negative reaction, but the opposite happened. Next thing we knew, we had been invited to an open meeting and also received an information pack.
We attended the meeting, which gave us a chance to ask questions and also to gauge whether they wanted a couple like us on their books.
Before long we were visited at home where we were asked why we wanted to adopt etc, and for our home to be checked for suitability. A couple of weeks later we received a letter with details of the 7 week 'Adoption Preparation Course'. We found the course quite interesting, and we learnt a lot from the information given. Plus we also made some new friends.
At the end of the course we said we still wanted to continue, so 6 weeks later the home assessment started. Our Family placement worker (social worker to you and me) was fantastic, we felt very comfortable with her and that made it easy to be 100% honest, which is the most important thing to do during the whole process. But in some ways we still expected to get a "Thanks, but no thanks" back.
After 3 months and about 10 meetings at home, our file was put before the panel. We attended the panel meeting and they did have questions, mainly about if we had access to any LGBT support groups. As we had already obtained information about some, the panel were happy and after a few tense minutes, our family placement worker gave us the news, we were approved!!!! Now the long wait to be matched began.
We thought we would be waiting years rather than months, as we would be at the bottom of the pile. But just 9 months later we were told we were matched with a little boy. Within 2 months, made up of meetings, decorating and excitement the panel approved the match.
The foster carer had already been talking to our son about different family lifestyles and set ups. His foster carer was brilliant, giving us all the support we needed but also stepping back to let us get on with introductions. Finally, twenty months after phoning Salford about the possibility of adoption and expecting to be told no at every opportunity or to receive different treatment to everyone else, we are now a family with our wonderful son.
As we said, we made friends on the course. This was with two straight couples whom we kept in contact with and occasionally met up to discuss how we were all getting on. This also helped to confirm to us that we received exactly the same service and reactions as they did. In fact we were all matched within months of each other and all our final adoption orders went though within weeks. Now all our children really look forward to seeing each other and love to play together, they are best of friends, as we have all become good friends."
This information has been kindly supplied by Proud 2 b Parents group (LGBT parents) who work in the Greater Manchester area.
For more information on the group please contact Matt on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone/ text 07506515932 and facebook proud 2 b parents