Over the weekend, a judge in Belfast High Court described the "depressing circumstances" surrounding an application for a freeing order that would allow local authorities to put a family's child up for adoption.
The boy (J) was born on 20 May 2012 and is now two years old. His mother (A) was 13 when she became pregnant and 14 when J was born. His father (Z) was 15 when J was conceived and 16 when he was born. J's mother and father are sister and brother [...] J initially lived with his mother and grandparents. A was herself taken into care on 20 July 2012. J followed her into care on 2 October 2012 though in a different setting. Care orders were made for J and for both his parents on 16 September 2013. By then J was in a concurrent placement with a couple – he is still there with all indications being that this placement is entirely suitable.
The Daily Mail reports: "The mother was already known to social services due to previous concerns about her own mother, stepfather, and siblings."
The girl's brother claimed he wasn't the father but a DNA test confirmed it to be the case.
It is notable that A reverts to immature, hostile and obstructive conversation when asked to consider J's best interest and future. She makes a superficial statement regarding the outcome she wants for J without evidence of ability to consider the consequences for him. A is not able to show any development in her understanding of his needs over the past year. While it is likely that her understanding of his needs has developed, she is not able to articulate or communicate this or to weigh up and consider in detail her conflicted feelings. A is developmentally immature because of her own history of faulty parenting and because of the sexual abuse she has suffered.