When you are feeling sick, you go to a doctor to see what is wrong with you. When you have a toothache, you go to see a dentist. When your car isn't working well you go to a mechanic. All of these people you go to are people you trust. If you find for some reason you can't trust them, or aren't sure they have your best interest at heart, you find someone else to take your problems to.
So DW and I are thinking that we trust (S)s social worker, but only to a degree. We trust that everything she has done and will do will be what she believes is in (S)s best interest. We also know that she is overworked and has a large caseload and anything she can do to reduce her caseload is a plus. So while we trust her, we don't totally trust the information she is giving us when we ask questions about adoption of (S). And since we know absolutely nothing about the impacts we will have regardless of our decision, that is not a good thing.
So......we are making an appointment with a social worker who has some experience in these matters herself, but is not associated with the state at all. We know this woman and trust her to give us the straight poop. We also know exactly what we want to accomplish. We want to make the right decision for (S) for the right reasons taking into account all the factors affecting both her life and ours. I pray that when the time comes that is what we do.