Thursday 28 September 2017


So, adoptive grand parenting. Is that even a thing?

Clearly, in most areas of my life I'm making this up as I go along and this new 'development' is no different. However, I feel it highlights a specific weakness in my parenting, babies. One of the peculiarities of my very contemporary adoption experience is that it creates significant actual gaps in my actual parenting experience. Lotty is the closest we came to a baby, she rocked into our lives at 3  months old and continues to act as a force for disruption and exquisite joy with equal measure since those crazy days in December 2005. Her sass could literally be weaponised.

The night she came as our first foster placement, MrC had a prior arrangement with the big three and left me alone with this baby.  Lotty cried without ceasing and I was the physical manifestation of incompetence and fear. Think Fawlty dad meets Frank Spencer.

Anyway she survived and I survived.

That brings me to grandparenting, I've been pretty freaked out.  Up til now biology didn't matter, adoption was what it was and I guessed that there would be plenty to do as a dad; poo, vomit, soul crushing routine with the odd moment of love and joy. I suspected that the love would grow in the midst of all of the other parenting stuff. I know I do exaggerate. However, I fear grandparenting seems to be focused more on the fun and permissive end of parenting with all the really hard work removed. So, here's my worry, a worry that was hidden and in all the practical stuff first time round.

Will I love this child that has no biological link to me, I'm meant to be there for the fun and the games. What if I feel nothing? What if I'm rubbish at this? I'm struggling to get my head around it.

None of my contemporaries are grandparents yet so I'm currently taking advice on the issue and that's helped.
I remain nervous.
It's made me think of how my mother felt when we introduced the idea of adoption to her.
It's made me think of some of the difficulties that adopters have with their parents.
I've confessed this to my daughter and I'm sure it'll all be ok. She didn't seem worried.

It took time with all my children.

Seems odd in a week like this all, media reports, DfE meetings and la de da flitting around it all comes back to being a dad and worrying, like every other dad, that I'm going to get it right.


  1. One of my grandchildren, from an adoptive daughter, told me "You are not my real grandad." One of her "real" grandfathers is the cause why her mother went into care, and the other grandfather has nothing to do with her. I do, but then, I am not a "real" grandad. They dont teach you this in adoption school . . .

    1. Blimey it's complicated. The names are emotive and clearly linked to roles and players in children, and grandchildren's, lives. I must have been napping in adoption school when they mentioned this!
      Thanks for commenting.