Crohn's Disease Forum » Support Forum » Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender » Partner and I considering adopting in spite of diseases

02-26-2013, 05:28 PM   #1
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Location: Anglesea, Victoria, Australia

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My name is JJ, I am a 30 year old woman who has been with my female partner for almost five years (ive always been gay) and consider myself as VERY lucky...

A quick rundown of my story looks something like this...

I met my partner when I was 25, two weeks later I found a breast lump, a month later had a biopsy then started getting infection after infection in the breast.... I was consequently fired from my job for taking too much time off.

I moved in with my partner not long after that (she should have ran away then... But she didn't...) I had the precancerous breast lump removed two years later at 27, and had been too sick with infections, D at least twice to three times everyday, joint pain, nausea, cramps, and sciatica, to work... Also my platelets were up and I was anemic... So I took on part time University study from home....

After a barage of 'normal' tests My GP (primary care giver?) sent me to see a GI who conducted a colonoscopy, endoscopy, barium X-ray, MRI -- all of which showed nothing... As a last resort she organized a 'pill cam' and found ulcers in my terminal ileum and some inflammation in my colon... dX 'mild' crohns

My partner could have run then too.... But nope...

My crohns got steadily worse until it reached its peak of D 25 times a day, nausea, anemia, cramps, fatty liver, severe joint pain etc... I was on copious amounts of Salofalk (the equivalent to pentasa?) More than twice the maximum dose (my GI said that it wouldnt hurt... Wrong...)

So here we were two years into our relationship... I'd had a breast lump removed and a DX of a chronic disease... Our relationship was also being tested by her parents who disapprove of her being gay, let alone in a relationship with a lazy bum who 'won't' work.... She should have ran then....

So suddenly I was starting to have SEVERE flank pain followed by copious amount of blood in the urine and was being rushed to hospital every couple of weeks only to be sent home 5-7 days later with no diagnosis... I had everyone stumped.... My poor partner would work a 14 hour day, 6 days a week, come home and feed our animals, come to the hospital and sit by my bed for 3-4 hours, bring me food (as I am on a dairy free gluten free diet...) take my washing home and do it all over again the next day (yup, she's an angel)

It took them a further 18 months to work out that I had a rare kidney disease called renal papillary necrosis (where part of my kidney was dying, shedding and then getting stuck in my ureter) I had a stent fitted but it was removed 3 weeks later due to a major infection.... So now there is nothing they can do for me besides pain meds (which I try not to take as they make me severely depressed)

A week after I got out of hospital in April 2011 my partner proposed... we have been engaged ever since... (its still ot legal in australia) So as I said... I count myself as VERY lucky, my partner has seen me at my absolute worst... And still wants to marry me... The woman needs a medal I swear!

We are currently discussing children which of course is complicated due to my many illnesses... And she works full time, so we are looking at other opinions such as adopting (difficult in Australia) or fostering... I am flaring again at the moment so I'm thinking it will go in hold again for a little while...

I'm sorry for the ridiculously looooonnngggg story, but I just wanted to say that there ARE good people in this world who will accept you and love you no matter what... I pray that those of you looking for love are as lucky as I have been!

Looking forward to talking to you all in the forum!

JJ xxx
Dx Jan 2011 Crohn's disease Terminal illium & Colon
Dx October 2011 Renal Papillary Necrosis

Meds: Entocort/Budesonide 6mg
Oxycodone (for strong pain)
Pramin (for nausea)

Last edited by nogutsnoglory; 05-27-2013 at 07:03 PM.
05-27-2013, 07:14 PM   #2
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Location: New York

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JJ it's really wonderful to hear how supportive your partner has been through all of your health battles and in the face of her family opposition to your relationship. Love conquers all, right? I have found that those I dated in the past supported me through the good, the bad and the ugly that this disease can bring because they loved me. I'm sorry to hear her parents are unaccepting and consider you lazy simply because you are ill. People can be so cruel. Do they maintain a relationship with the two of you or is it extremely distant?

I also really relate to your talk about wanting to adopt or raise foster kids. I am single now and could never do it on my own but I truly hope to start a family in the next few years. I worry about the impact of my disease on raising kids. I don't want to be the sick dad who can never do anything and I would not want all the burden to be on my partner. I know raising kids takes a village. I haven't seriously looked into adoption because I need a partner, marriage and to own a home first but I hear the process can be very lengthy and expensive. Have you considered in-vitro? I am not sure if that's an option you could or would consider for either you or your partner.
05-30-2013, 04:59 PM   #3
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Chicago, Illinois

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Looks like you found yourself the catch of the century!

You have been through quite the struggle and not only do I applaud your partner for showing such strong support for you during all of this but I also want to applaud you for your strength and hanging in there despite all these medical complications.

I hope that your health and outside circumstances don't ever prevent you and your partner from creating the family that you desire.

Wishing you better health to come and an even happier ending
Crohn's-Colitis May 2012
Current Meds:
6-MP (100mg) / Asacol (4800mg)
Past Meds:
Prednisone/ Entocort / Flagyl
Current Supplements:
B12 Shot (1cc/mo) / Multivitamin / Vitamin D (1000iu) / Calcium (1200mg) / Omega 3 Fish Oil (4800mg)
Additional Info:
Anemia/Borderline Anemia - whole life
Generalized Anxiety Disorder - 2009 (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, mindfulness meditation)

08-21-2013, 10:10 AM   #4
heyayej's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Wow, JJ! Looks like you've had quite the eventful medical history!

Hope all is going well (as well as it can be) for you now and am so glad to hear you've found such a supportive partner!

I've not heard much about the adoption process in Australia, but I wish you guys the best of luck in whatever you decide to do!
08-22-2013, 09:47 PM   #5
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Australia

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I am a foster carer.
Since being a carer I have navigated a two year long horrendous flare, stoma surgery and reversal. The agency have been great and so have the kids. I can highly recommend it as an option. I have also done it solo - so with two of you - it should be a breeze!
Dx - Crohns Disease - 1992
Ileostomy - Jan 2012, Reversed Aug 2013
Pred works, all else seems to fail
Filgotinib trial Jan 2018
08-22-2013, 10:36 PM   #6
nogutsnoglory's Avatar
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Location: New York

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Isn't it hard being a foster parent because you get attached to the kids but someone might come adopt them or the foster center takes them elsewhere? Do you have any rights? I want to adopt when I'm healthy and partnered.
08-22-2013, 11:05 PM   #7
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Location: Australia

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Fostering in Australia doesn't work like that.
The underpinning social policy is about family reunification - so if the kid leaves - it is generally because they are re-joining their own family - and that is usually something to celebrate as it is often a long held dream for the kid.
There is usually no adoption process because of family reunification.

Some kids will stay with one carer from being a baby until they turn 18 - and this is often enforced by a court order (but is not an adoption related process).
If a foster placement is working out - the foster agency will not move the kid - as there simply is not anywhere for them to move. There are just not enough carers - so the kids get placed in residential care.

The kids are generally great. I have to say - it is the most rewarding thing I have ever done. I love it. I find it utterly fulfilling. I would recommend it to anybody who has thought about doing it.

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