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‘I sent my adopted son back into care’.

‘I sent my adopted son back into care’.

So what makes an adoptive parent return their child back to care?

Rob (not his real name) and his wife had children of their own, but decided to adopt three more.  They had been warned by social services that the boy they were adopting could be difficult but nothing prepared them for what came next.

“He was violent towards my wife” he said. “My wife now shows the sort of symptoms of someone who’s suffered domestic abuse.”

Rob ended up with ‘quite serious’ depression and almost lost his job because he took a lot of time off work.

Finally, the situation became too much and the boy was taken back into care. Rob described this as the hardest thing he had ever had to do. He said “it felt like failure.”  

He added: “It felt like letting this kid down, how can you do that to your own son, who you really love? It’s heart breaking.” But he also believes that, had the family been given more support, then the situation may well have turned out very differently.

National statistics don’t exist, but it’s estimated that between 3.2% and 9% of adoptions fail, with the child either being taken back into care or leaving the family home to be placed elsewhere.

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