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Compassion fatigue/blocked care

Baddad March 14, 2022 20:21

I've been suffering with blocked care for 9 years (basically day 1 of getting our AS)

We are engaged in the TESSA program and the psychologist acknowledged that this was the case. But no-one has suggested any way of dealing with it other than to just "man up" and get on with it. I'm the adult so it's my responsibility. They've admitted that I have blocked care but all the training is about connection and therapeutic parenting. This simply isn't possible while suffering compassion fatigue. I've completely disconnected.

Quite rightly, the adoption process focusses on the wellbeing of the child but it seems to completely ignore the wellbeing of the parent. I googled the suicide rates of adoptive parents and there are no articles relating to it, all of them are focused on the adopted child. I know the child is the priority but how can you keep going when no-one gives a sh*t about you? My physical health is shot to pieces, my mental health is in the drain, it's a huge elephant in the room with the wife and only a matter of time until she's had enough of me . I just want it to stop.

There seems to be lots of information on what compassion fatigue is but no realistic way to get over it. After 9 years I find it hard to imagine I can ever connect and I've completely lost any hope for the future.

Has anyone actually got over it?

Safia March 14, 2022 20:56

I think you need to change your user name! - a bad dad would not still be around after nine years of suffering so much or be seeking help to change things. Of course you can’t just “man up” and no one should be suggesting that you do. I get a real sense of how everything in your life seems to be crumbling. I have no real experience of blocked care as such but if I were you I’d find some therapy / counselling as quickly as possible to help you begin to work through it all. Most counsellors will offer an initial session free or low cost for you to assess whether they have the necessary experience and you can work together. If you can possibly afford it I would find someone to work with privately or find an agency that provides it low cost then you can start immediately. I do have experience of good quality counselling - in helping me deal with major issues due to something that happened to my daughter - and know it will make a huge difference - in fact it can be a life saver!

Baddad March 14, 2022 21:34

Thanks @safia.

I can't afford private therapy. I had EMDR treatment for PTSD (unrelated) and it took two years on the waiting list. I've spoken to the GP mental health team and they reckon it'll be about the same wait for more help (many people are struggling these days). I think I'd need someone specifically dealing with adoption issues really. I'm sceptical about whether it would help but I feel like I've got to try something.

Safia March 14, 2022 21:56

Any agencies near you? I know of some where there’s a really short waiting list - not free but low cost. Someone with knowledge of adoption would obviously be best but I think asap is important. You could try the adoption support fund through your PASW in your LA

Baddad March 15, 2022 08:54

I have no idea who the support worker would be. The LA abandoned us after placement for 9 years until he started getting into trouble in school

Donatella March 15, 2022 10:37

Is there anything available via the ASF assuming you’re in England?

Does your child have any diagnoses - therapeutic parenting has its place but it isn’t always the right thing. There are other parenting strategies depending on what’s going on with your child. We found that attachment was the assumed difficulty with my children but it wasn’t the primary cause. I’ve two autistic teenagers and both require different strategies. Therapeutic parenting alone simply doesn’t do it. There’s also NVR for example.

I can’t say I’ve really experienced blocked care but I wonder as you say you’ve felt this way from the beginning if there are any clinical issues in the mix as well that medication may help with?

Safia March 15, 2022 10:57

To find out about the ASF and adoption support in general in your area just contact your local social services - it will be a duty SW who will probably answer but will be able to process your request and forward it to the right person / department who will then get in touch. There may also be support groups in your area which may help - not only adoption related but also specific to any diagnoses / conditions your child may have. It’s always helpful to speak to other parents and find that you’re not alone in your struggles

Baddad March 17, 2022 07:44

Thanks for advice. I'm in Wales, not sure if that makes any difference.

I may have used the wrong term. His behaviours are definitely challenging but the problem is sitting with me now. The situation has beaten me into submission and I just don't care about him anymore. I'm going through the motions because I made a commitment to provide for him. But the one thing I can't give us love/attachment/nurturing. I'll protect him until my dying breath because that's my job, but that's also exactly how it feels. A job, 24/7/365 responsibility with no emotional reward. Every interaction just sucks the joy out of life.

Donatella March 17, 2022 07:55

Ah okay. I’m in Wales as well so no ASF. There is a group run locally to me that’s run by an adoptive dad and it’s just for dads to get together to support each other. Dad was in the same position you now are

I can also suggest a couple of other Facebook groups - one not adoption specific but offers support and training to parents. Through this group I’ve done NVR training, Teen life, and various others. Even if it’s not local to you, you could still access it. I volunteer for them now. They also have a web page

There’s also a support group and page run by a friend for parents of children with FAS/D. Many many adoptees have issues over and above trauma, attachment which not all professionals want to recognise.

Feel free to message me - I don’t want to share location details here but happy for you to message me

Edited 17/03/2022


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