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Supporting one another

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Bop April 25, 2019 23:33

"> A great way to support others who are struggling is to talk about your own experience. If you don't want to share it publicly, drop them a private message."

Tech team/moderators - please can you explain how this works when private messages are now called chat and only available to AUK members? I will not be re-joining AUK but have offered support to others on here for many years - and PMs are a valuable part of that for security reasons... This feels like a major backward step for the forum.

Edited 17/02/2021
shadow April 26, 2019 13:39

thats a shame that only full members can access private messages - I was a paid up member for many years but my daughter is an adult now so its not really worth me being a full member but would like to be able to contact newer adopters by PM to offer support

Edited 17/02/2021
LM technical support May 2, 2019 14:17

Hi. Just to mention that so long as you have been verified by an agency, a paying member can still start a chat with you. So on the forum you could invite newer adopters to start a chat with you if they wanted support.

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 2, 2019 19:18

LM Admins

Most of us longer term adopters are no longer involved in any "agencies" - our kids are way past that stage, but we can still support those who are struggling.... How do you propose we get "verification"? Maybe you could look back over the message boards over the past ten plus years?

I'm really disappointed - I like being able to give back, having received great support from more experienced adopters when we needed it earlier in our journey.

Edited 17/02/2021
LM technical support May 2, 2019 19:32

Hi Bop. You don't need to be actively involved with an agency, we just need to be able to contact either a VAA or local authority that will have a record of you having adopted, however long ago. This could be the LA that placed your child or children, and we are going to make this clearer.

We absolutely want you to be able to give back, and are aiming to make this a secure space where you can be confident about who you are talking to, and find other adopters more easily. That's the reason for the verifications, but we know it's a bit of a pain initially. Thanks for bearing with us and do get in touch directly if you need any specific help.

Edited 17/02/2021
Donatella May 2, 2019 22:02

The issue as I see it is that not everyone wants social services to know that we’re posting here. Not everyone has a positive experience with social services and the last thing some people want to do is ‘invite’ SS to come looking! And by insisting on contacting them for verification you’re opening that door ... I’m fortunate, on the whole we’ve had positive experiences but my children are older, we’ve had no contact now for sometime and I’m happy to leave it like that! Notwithstanding I’ve had involvement with a few agencies so who to pick?! Cynical, maybe. But there you go. Some/lots of us are long-standing adopters and we cba for all that faff.

just my opinion

Edited 17/02/2021
Daffodil May 2, 2019 22:34

I do understand your concern Camelia, but it’s worth mentioning that authorities and VAAs have verified over 10,000 adopters for Link Maker over the past 5 years. Most of those were for family-finding, but 4,000 were also to use the community features on here, and many of those were ‘older’ adopters. You may still prefer not to, but these verifications are very routine for agencies.

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 2, 2019 22:59

Sorry but after the experiences we have had, I do not wish to be going back to any agency - this is a block that means the support I can offer is very limited... I am sad that you have decided to take this route for those of us that have posted on these boards for many years...

Camelia's point is very valid - and your response limited in understanding - asking for verification at the approval stage is very different to after difficult experiences with agencies that fell short.....

Edited 17/02/2021
Donatella May 2, 2019 23:49

With respect Linkmaker is about finding links for prospective adopters be that first, second time. You are completely missing my point. Contacting agencies during approval and matching stages is one thing - contacting them years after placement and AO is another thing altogether. And I won’t be doing it I’m afraid.

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 3, 2019 09:00

Just to add to this, many of the more experienced adopters were members of AUK for years, but its no longer appropriate/necessary - maybe AUK should check their records. I understand there are security concerns but there is more than one way to check on someone's legitimacy.

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 3, 2019 19:20

Another thought - those just starting out and exploring whether adoption is right for them are not going to have an agency to verify them - how do you propose it works for them?

Edited 17/02/2021
CatLady1 May 4, 2019 00:16

Bop and Camelia make excellent points regarding the issue of verification and the need to contact an agency before being allowed to post private messages.

I would like to add another point for consideration. I am a grandparent- my daughter and son in law adopted a child (still pre school) and I am the main go-to person in their support network. Thus I have been very involved in supporting them and take my.responsibilities seriously. I have read and learned a lot from the posters on this forum over the last couple of years, and I share this with my daughter . I am coming to a stage where I feel I can start to give something back; I feel that my experiences could be of interest and even of help to other adoptive grandparents.

In recent months I have posted on the forum and felt very supported here. Now with the new forum, I am starting to feel excluded. I am not a member of AUK, because I am not allowed to join. From what I can make out, all members have to be verified by their agency as adopters or.potential adopters and I am neither. I now can not post or receive a private message through this forum because I am not 'verified'. So another door shuts in the face of another person willing to help. I just think all this seems very short sighted and a real shame.

Edited 17/02/2021
ceres May 6, 2019 11:39

Oké I registered because I wanted to post an update as promised about my children. Wow I am very impressed..... (not) Just to tell you I am actually illegally here as it is not possible to register with a foreign address (brexit starting to work, lol). I got around it by posting my uk address when I lived there more than a decade ago. So just for ad uk to know, every baby seller from wherever can still register by using a false uk address. My oldest is 18, I have been active on the boards until recently, my child was adopted when I lived in the uk, yet officially I can not even post on the open boards anymore, not have the option to privately contact people if I wish to do so. I also was an aduk member for many years! Aduk are you banning me for life now or take me on as a member and register my details officially? Only my address was false, my name and email are the same as fifteen years ago, look in your records! Go on call the la in Ceredigion, they know me well!

It does not matter really either way as I no longer post or read, the only reason to register was the update, and now I feel the need to post this, and are unsure about an update. This forum feels very weird!

Edited 17/02/2021
ceres May 6, 2019 11:41

Aha interesting wrong username! the above post is posted by pluto! Obviously, Ceres is my twin planet, lol

Edited 17/02/2021
Safia May 6, 2019 14:35

Well done Pluto! You’ve managed more than many of us - as you can see the boards have been “improved” again - so pretty empty! I was wondering if you would come back as promised with your update - that’s probably in another post so I will look. Hope you’re keeping well and everything is going well for you

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 6, 2019 18:14

Have anyone else noticed you can see both names for everyone - on the actual post it has your username ie Bop/Safia/ceres but on the list of topics on the first page it shows the private name for each person - not too big a deal for me as its *bop* but might be for some? Not sure how that helps the security - three step but we'll give you step one!

Love that you managed to hack in Pluto! Hope all is well with you x

Edited 17/02/2021
ceres May 6, 2019 19:37

The point I try to make is that I am not the only foreigner or expat who does not live in the uk but still has adopted uk children. I know of several, it is a bit strange really. In my opinion nothing is 'safer', just more hassle, remember username, any old password will not do so you have to remember not only the dentist appointment for braces, the gp appointment because you have a nasty flu (it started with the kids but as usual they were over it in two days, you need the gp after 14 days nearly dying), and that birthday present for a child you do not know but you're delighted that your child is invited for the first time, but also a stupid combination of letters, numbers and stupid signs! And not forget your birth year as number code! As if anyone has time for this crap.

Yes I might write a longer post if they are not kicking me off the boards before that time, In that case I just come back than under a different name, the theme is planets at the moment, lol. It is so far........ as most of you know I adopted a child who has two schizophrene birth parents it's now his turn....... the hallucinations, eye turning, psychiotic behaviours have started...........

I would like to write a post, how it is to live with this risk of schizophrenia, the early symptomes, the decision to get him into residential care at 18, antroposific care communities, adopting that child what never will be independent, how was that when he was 6, and how it is now he's 18. Those sort of things can be interesting for prospectives, but I need more time as I am moving in two months, but that's a whole different story :-)

Edited 17/02/2021
Safia May 8, 2019 08:52

Pluto that would be very interesting for others to read - not just prospectives but others who may then pick up the early signs in their own kids - and how to cope with this as I don’t think it is something that’s come up before. Other people may be struggling with decisions about residential care - I know this has come up before but you might have a different perspective. Also it can be therapeutic for you yourself to write it all down. A blog might be the way to go - does this site still have blogs? Sometimes blogs turn into a book too ...,

Anyway I for one would love to read your update. Good luck with the move too

Edited 17/02/2021
Bop May 8, 2019 09:28

AUK / LM Admins seems to have gone very response to the points raised?

I guess that is normal - we are used to being ignored but AUK, guess LM are the same. :(

Edited 17/02/2021
LM technical support May 8, 2019 14:29

Hi Bop,

As mentioned earlier in a previous post, we have spotted the issue with usernames displaying on the forum listing for some users and will be fixing it asap. We apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.

Kind regards,
The Link Maker team

Edited 17/02/2021
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