Adoption in the UK: An adoption diary book review

August 16, 2013 2 Comments


Adoption in the UK has changed considerably over the last ten or fifteen years, however the emotion imparted during the process has not. ‘An Adoption Diary‘ is one of few books that encapsulate the sheer drama of adoption, from infertility, right the way through to placement and beyond.

An Adoption Diary is available on Amazon for £7.16


Maria James is one of many women who dreams of parenthood but is hit by the unforgiving wall of infertility.

In ‘An Adoption Diary’ she tells of her personal struggle to have children, from the realisation of infertility, to the heart-warming moments of finally adopting.

An old problem

It is not a new book, but one that persistently tugs at my heart strings, not least because of its similarity to my own story.

It begins with the sun setting on her pursuit of achieving parenthood through her own pregnancy, and coming to terms with infertility, as she joins a list of people in the UK 3.5 million strong.

The book then moves fluidly through the process of adoption in the UK as she details the emotional toll of preparation groups, the home study, and the dreaded Form F. (Since renamed the Prospective Adopters Report or PAR).

Adopt some patience

Whilst the process for adoption in the UK has changed significantly since this book was published, James captures one of the most difficult aspects of adoption with laser accuracy – waiting.

“The frustration is immense, and no amount of preparation is ever going to convey how flat it feels when the excitement of panel day has waned.”

Patience, it is said, is a virtue, but even the most virtuous reach their tether end when waiting to adopt.

James’ heart-wrenching story epitomises the utter frustration, and rawest of emotions when she discusses waiting. She writes expertly about the finer details of adoption – attachment theory, separation and loss, but her angle on waiting is as expressive as it is accurate.



5 stars

If you are starting the process of adoption in the UK, this book is a must read. If you have also gone through infertility, this book is your best friend.

An Adoption Diary is available on Amazon for £7.16

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About the Author:

Andrew is an adoptive father, and stay at home dad. Having adopted his son in January 2013, he is a new adoptive parent, but well versed in the adoption process. He is a married, coffee drinker, Xbox addict, and a Marketing graduate. Andrew McDougall is an alias he uses to protect the identity of his adopted son.

Comments (2)

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  1. Paul Taylor says:

    I couldn’t agree more, it was the first book I read about adoption and the process. I don’t typically read books and have found it difficult to read some of the more in depth books on attachment.
    But this one was a revelation, it got me thinking more about the emotions than the time scales.

    We are currently in the post panel waiting stage, and it’s so hard, far harder than I ever imagined especially as our Social Worker needs prompting before she does anything.

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