Parents who have their children removed from their care are among the most vulnerable in our society. They often have a history of experiencing poor parenting themselves which has led to poor life choices.
I’m very lucky that I had the kind of childhood that I did. It gave me the tools and skills to be able to safely parent as an adult. I know that my children’s birth parents didn’t have that which is heartbreaking. If they had, they would have had a better chance at being able to safely parent all of their children.
I can’t begin to imagine how you pick up the pieces and move on with your life after the trauma of losing a child. That’s the reality though for the families of children who have been adopted. Supporting birth families is so important. I’m sure as our children grow up, they’ll want to know there’s somewhere their birth family can go to get help and support.
A good place to start for birth family support is PAC-UK. They are largest independent Adoption Support Agency in the UK. They offer help and support to anyone affected by adoption, but the focus of this article is birth parent support.
First Family service
Their First Family service provides a range of different types of services for birth families. There is a telephone advice line to either their London or Leeds office. The phone numbers and opening times are listed here.
Face to face and telephone counselling is available, usually for up to six sessions. The intermediary service provides help with contacting and/or reunion with an adult child. There are also a range of support groups in London and Leeds. These groups are confidential and free of charge.
Forget Me Not garden
PAC-UK has been working with The Open Nest to create a memorial garden which is the first of it’s kind in the UK. The “Forget Me Not Garden” will be the first permanent garden in England dedicated to parents and wider family members affected by adoption. It sounds like a beautiful, peaceful place for contemplation.
PAC-UK’s website is www.pac-uk.org and is packed full of information about how to access support for anyone affected by adoption and permanence.