Discussing different notions of fatherhood, such as biological paternity, social fatherhood, sperm donorship and the `father figure', this informative book - the first on birth fathers in adoption - brings new light to issues such as the decision to give up a child for adoption, the child's desire to find his or her birth parents, and the facilitation of contact in later life.
Written in an accessible style with insights into adoption and social work practice past and present, Birth Fathers and their Adoption Experiences offers a vital new perspective on understanding the causes and consequences of adoption, and makes positive suggestions for working with those whom it affects.
In between, the book looks at all the different types of adoption that are carried out by all sorts of families from all sorts of children of every race and age and with every kind of problem. They range from babies who are only days old when they are taken into an adoptive family to teenagers with a multitude of psychological and physical problems. The book looks at both the success and failure of these adoptions.
Its aim is to inform and enlighten professionals, adopters, potential adopters and all those whose lives have in some way been touched by adoption or want to know more about it.
In 15 chapters it includes more than 70 real life stories which are all told from the heart sometimes in a moment of crisis and sometimes at a time of joy. They are not analysed, they are true stories about how it feels to be at the centre of adoption. All the stories, which have been recounted over the past 10 years, are reflective of adoption today in Britain.
The book also includes a chapter on the legal aspects of adoption and a further chapter of useful information and addresses.
With more than 70 real life stories, revealing moments of vulnerability and moments of joy, this book provides an authentic insight into adoption.
These stories take the reader on a journey through every stage of the adoption process, from making the initial decision to adopt to hearing from adoptees, and offer an informative and emotive account of the reality of families' experiences along the way. It includes chapters on adopting children of all ages as well as sibling groups; adopting as a single parent; adopting as a same sex couple; adopting emotionally and physically abused children; the nightmare of adoption breaking down; contact with birth parents; tracing and social media and more.
Adopting: Real Life Stories will be an informative and refreshing read for adopters, potential adopters, professionals and all those whose lives have in some way been touched by adoption or want to know more about it.
Based on government-commissioned research and part of the Supporting Parents initiative, this book addresses each stage of the care process, from placement selection to leaving foster care. The authors consider which kinds of professional support at which stages make a difference, the foster carer parenting skills that are crucial and how foster carers can draw on professional support to manage adolescents' behaviour, maintain their educational attainments and negotiate ongoing contact with their birth parents. They draw out recommendations for policy and practice in the areas of:
how strain on carers can be reduced
the role foster carers' own children play in placement success or breakdown
single foster carers
how to contain the young people who are hardest to foster
key training requirements for foster carers
how foster carers and social workers respond to gender differences in teenagers.
A rich source of recommendations for social workers, policy makers and carers, this book will be invaluable to anyone involved in the fields of child welfare and child protection.
The specific needs of the foster child are given close attention in determining a pathway to success. By monitoring and describing the individual characteristics of the child within the context of the placement, the authors are able to reveal what types of supports are most beneficial.
The implications for this research are considerable. Social workers are given new methods of assessing the needs of foster children which emphasise the process of care and not just the outcome. Policy makers are provided with rich qualitative accounts with which to increase and strengthen the success of foster placements. This is essential reading for social workers, policy makers and foster families.
Scrawny, filthy and wide-eyed with fear when they turn up on foster carer Maggie Hartley's doorstep, these young siblings have hardly set foot outside their own home. They have been prisoners, locked in a terrifying world of abuse and violence.
Maggie soon realises that Evie and Elliot are lacking the basic life skills we all take for granted. The outside world terrifies them; the sound of the doorbell sends them into a panic that takes hours to abate. Gradually unlocking the truth of their heart-breaking upbringing, Maggie tells their shocking true story.
From emotionally scarred and damaged little children, we see how - with warmth and dedication - Maggie transforms their lives. As this moving story unfolds, we share Maggie's joy when these children finally smile again, when they realise they do have a future after all.
Discover why readers have fallen in love with Maggie Hartley
"I absolutely loved this book. It is up there with one of the best. I have laughed and I have cried. I would give it ten stars if I could." - Amazon Reviewer, 5 stars
"If you haven't read Maggie's books they are a must read." - Amazon Reviewer, 5 stars
"Such a heart-breaking story you just can't put this book down. I have read many books of this genre and this is one of the best. Hard hitting and real... don't miss this one!" - Amazon Reviewer, 5 stars