Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Clare Grogan: Why adoption means so much to me

Actress, singer, adoptive mother and BAAF Patron, Clare Grogan explains her journey to adoption, why it means so much to her, and why she supports BAAF.

I had a huge desire to be a mum. However, what seemed to happen so easily for other people was really hard for us. I became obsessed - it was a really difficult time.

I hadn’t even thought about adoption until a chance meeting with an old friend who had recently adopted a little boy. That day I went straight home and made the call.

Deciding to adopt was so liberating. It was like a new world opened up to me. Finally I was able to let go and accept that there were other routes to parenthood.

The adoption process was tough, but I felt it should be. I thought it was important for the social workers to take time to get to know us. In adoption you really have to learn to put yourself aside – after all, it is a service for children.

Our adoption took about two years from start to finish. When it actually happened it was so overwhelming. It still makes me cry when I think about the day we were at last a family. And I knew, however tough the process had been for us, it wasn’t anything compared to what our daughter had been through.

I’ve given a number of interviews to the media about my experiences. I know how important it is to be able to access information about adoption, and I love being able to help link others with organisations like BAAF. I get people stopping me in the street to ask for advice now. It’s great to connect with people like that.

Last year I became a patron for BAAF, which was an honour. Since then I have become an Adoption Champion, and now I’m encouraging people to get involved with their Valentine’s Day campaign. I love the idea that families can celebrate the day – maybe by sharing a box of chocolates, or writing cards to each other. But for some children who have been separated from their birth families February 14th won’t be anything to celebrate. Their day may be filled with loneliness, confusion and anxiety.

For just £3 you can buy a limited edition ‘virtual’ rose to show you care about a child in care. The money raised will go towards supporting BAAF’s work. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll know how important that is.

Visit the website today and show that you care.

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