Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Facebook adoption


I’m a private investigator regularly asked to locate adopted children. I am a former adoption officer with a large local authority and I have an adopted daughter.

I can see the attraction for anyone involved in contact and adoption issues of using Facebook and other social networking sites to get in touch with their lost loved ones.

However, unsolicited and unmanaged contact is probably the most damaging way to bring about a positive outcome for all concerned.

I fully understand the need to make contact. I can see how the adults may believe that their child is distressed and lonely, especially when they are airing their views on social websites.

Most teenagers will go through a difficult time, but for the adopted, adolescents can be a very traumatic and challenging time. Putting their thoughts and feelings on the web’s pages can be likened to a page of their personal diary. Quite often they do not see the dangers of other people reading and internalising what they think are problems solely due to adoption, when in fact they are emotional ‘growing pains’.

Before reading too much into the writings think about your own transition to adulthood. Remember how traumatic that was! Did you want any adults involved with you at that time? I think not! Your friends were the ones you wanted around you. It’s the same on social websites kids want kids, not relatives, especially relatives they don’t know. Absent parents turning up ‘out of the blue’ is a recipe for disaster.

In every case that I investigated I made it known at the outset that if I did locate the child or absent parents, I would let them know that I’d located them but would not divulge their whereabouts unless they wanted to me to. Even then I built in a cooling off period. Once the decision had been made to meet up I then set about counselling everyone involved not least the adopting parents who quite often were the most threatened and vulnerable.

None of this can happen on a social network. This is dangerous and potentially damaging ground that should not be trodden without a well equipped, qualified professional.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Children need grandparents


Children who experience family breakdown have more positive outcomes when they can turn to grandparents for support according to the findings of a report commissioned by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

The impact of Family Breakdown on Children’s Wellbeing Evidence Review stresses that the government fully support stable parental relationships but realise that many thousands of children are subject to the stresses of parental separation.

It comes as no surprise that the study’s findings show that there is a higher probability of children experiencing parental separation now than at any time in the history of families.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Kids Need Dads ?

New Fathers 4 Justice staged a demonstrartion outside the home of Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly over the weekend as part of their quest to gain better recognition for fathers trying to get contact to their children.

Dressed in a superhero costume the self appointed spokesman 'Captain Equality' is reported to have threatened the MP with an escalation of the protest "if he fobs us off we will come back and it will not be so humerous next time".

I'm not at all sure that threats of this nature actually help the real issues around father's access to their children.

Over the years I've worked on hundreds of cases involving difficult contact issues. The majority have been father based but not exclusively. I could argue for a Mother's 4 Justice, Grandparents' 4 Justice, Siblings 4 justice, and Parents 4 Justice. All of these have difficult contact issues. The Courts are full to bursting with child contact work.

My honest experieince is that all the professionals involved in child contact do take account of the difficulties for fathers. I don't believe that making veiled threats is a good, constructive ploy. In my opinion all this does is highlight the often misguided belief that the male of the species is angry and violent.

If you think I'm wrong then please feel free to comment www.mychildcontact.com

Friday, 4 June 2010

Dad kills his 23 month baby!!!

With the events in Cumbria taking centre stage in the media circus it's easy to miss the tragic events in Derbyshire's Hobrook Village.

According to early investigations a 44 year old father stabbed to death his 38 year old partner and mother of their 23 month old boy. The toddler was also stabbed and died later in hospital.

Apparently the father was arrested last week following a series of death threats aimed at his former partner. As is often the case, he was not detained and went on to carry out his threats in the most horrific way.

Family disputes, especially involving children, bring out the very worse in people. Death threats are regularly dished out. Thankfully very few people carry these out. That's not to say that they do not terrorise the recipient, they do. Living in fear both for yourself and your children has to be torture.

One of the areas that we want to look into at mychildcontact.com is to help emotionally charged parents to handle their hurt in a more constructive way. I'm sure that everyone has felt the overwhelming sensation that starts in the pit of the stomach and erupts out of every muscle in the body. It is a horrible time and one that causes many people to act in away that they do not like but find hard to stop. Threats and acts of violence spill out, often in full view of the children, sometimes aimed at them.

If you are struggling with your emotions don't bottle them up, talk about your feelings. If you can't talk then write them down. Try to find ways of controlling your anger and hurt. We're here to listen to your story and help if we can. Take a look at our earlier blogs, there you'll find help and guidance or email us with your problems to info@mychildcointact.com