Foster care

Merry - posted on 02/26/2011 ( 14 moms have responded )

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Would you do foster care?
Have you?
Have you been in foster care?

It seems there's a huge amount of foster families that are really crappy people and they don't care for the children well, I think there's a huge need for decent loving families to help with the foster children in the system. When a good foster family has a troubled child they can help that child become a healthier person, they can bring out the good parts and help heal the pain. If every foster family was a quality family who truly loved the children coming in, don't you think there would be more kids adopted because they would learn to love and be loved? And the ones who age out of the system would at least have a good upbringing from their foster family and maybe not end up all in jail or dead.

Would you be willing to do it for real, not just in theory

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Iridescent - posted on 02/26/2011

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I was in and out of foster care quite a bit as a child. It was the only place I was cared about. It's where I learned that I do not have to be like my parents, because there are loving families that exist. It might be hard, but it's not impossible. I still talk to those foster parents today.

My husband and I have discussed becoming foster parents. We'd both like to, and have the ability to...in the future. Right now, our children need our care first, and a foster child would never be a "second citizen" in our house, but we couldn't handle the stress of more. To give them the care they need, it has to wait. My husband's aunt and uncle are excellent foster parents, and have kept kids for a weekend, and others for many years. It's a life we are familiar with.

Even if the kids aren't adopted out of foster care, it doesn't matter in cases like this. The opportunity to know they are valuable because they exist, and their life has value, means more than anything else ever can. Being adopted is a measure a lot of people use, but it really shouldn't be. Goal should be self-value, and having a happy fulfilling life later as a result.

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Lady Heather - posted on 02/27/2011

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I am not planning on being a foster parent, but we are intending on adopting one or two older kids when are kids are older and we are more experienced parents. It makes me really sad to think that kids just age out of family. I can't imagine being 18 and totally on my own. Yeah, I moved out and went to school but I always knew my parents were there if I needed them. And I know they are there to talk to now. So I want to be permanent family for some older kids who don't have that.

I knew this guy when I was younger who was bounced through the system. He tried so hard to do good. Then he aged out and had nowhere to go. So he went to his drug addict dad and now they are both in jail for murder. Honestly, I think with the right family that would never have happened to him.

After watching my husband's aunt I'm not sure I could do foster care. She would get attached to the kids and they'd get moved somewhere else for some reason. It was hard on her and in the end she adopted her last two foster kids because she couldn't bear to see them go. I have a feeling I would be the same way.

Jenn - posted on 02/27/2011

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Truth be told, I don't know if I could do it. This might sound horrible, but I'd be afraid of getting one of the crazy kids who ends up hurting my kids or worse. Maybe if my kids were grown I would do it, but not while they're young.

I remember as a kid, one of my friend's Mom was a foster parent and she was awesome! If only they could all be like that, but sadly I think some people do it for the wrong reasons.

Stifler's - posted on 02/26/2011

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Maybe when I get older and don't have my own kids as infants with the night feeds and constant attention seeking I'd do it. It wouldn't be easy. My sister in law fosters kid and she had foster baby 2 weeks older than Logan for her entire first year from birth and now she's been adopted out, I would be really sad if that happened. She was almost like part of the family but we all knew she never would be allowed to stay.

[deleted account]

I have a lot more to learn before saying if I'd be a foster mom. Adopting a baby? Sure, I'd do that. But I don't know how equipped I am to effectively help a child that has been emotionally and physically damaged. I'd like to say, "YES! I'll do it!" But realistically...I don't know.

While in college in was a volunteer in a few different rough environments. One of which was a juvenile correction center. I loved the girls. I loved spending time with them weekly. But at times, those 2-3 hours a week really took their toll on me. I'd come home crying because of things they'd told me or something that had happened. If 2-3 hours a week affected me in that way...what would 24/7 do to me? Would I be at MY best so that I could effectively help them?

There's a lot to think about before jumping on board in this capacity. I can't wait until my children are older so I can spend time volunteering...women's shelter or children's home...but fostering is such a huge commitment and I'd need to seriously learn and think much more about it.

Johnny - posted on 02/26/2011

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I did emergency foster care for about a year. Most kids were with me for only a couple days before a more stable placement came along. Some stayed as long as a month. I took only 12-16 year olds, so it was often kids getting out of juvie or runaways. Many had mental health problems that weren't being properly treated, some had addictions issues, and a few had both. Obviously it wasn't an opportunity to connect deeply or to really do much besides give them a safe place which wasn't a group home. I had quite a few teens girls who were recovering from traumas they experienced in jail or institutions, so they were not in a good frame of mind to be put in a group home, which is the norm here for that age group. My job was to run a very tight ship, with strict schedules, and tough rules. I also tried to give them things they hadn't seen in a while. A chance to cook a home made meal in a kitchen and eat it in front of the tv. Time to soak in the bath. Peace and quiet. I only took one kid at a time, I was in a 2 bedroom place. When my husband and I got together, I stopped. I felt it was my turn to have a life, to go out and have fun, and to start my own family. Yes, it was selfish.

I wouldn't do that route again, but I will do fostering once our own kids are grown. I am not comfortable bringing kids with all sorts of issues into my home while I am raising my kids. I've seen a bit too much to have that kind of trust. When my kids are teens, I would like to work with drug addicted babies. But that depends on our housing situation and how my husband feels about it at the time. You both need to be completely on board to handle that kind of thing. But one day we will do regular fostering, we've agreed on that.

♏*PHOENIX*♏ - posted on 02/26/2011

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From the time I was around 4 up until I was 15 I was in and out of foster homes, I have been to about 8-10 different schools in my life but I have lost count because it has been so many.
Its true many foster parents take kids in because of the money and nothing more, and its sad, there should be more strict guidelines, and screening, and monitoring of the family before the child goes to their home.

Yes I would take in foster children, but I would make sure I was truly able to take care of them.
I have always wanted to work with children in the system since I was 18, knowing what its like first hand, defiantly is a qualification in of itself, but combined with the school aspect it would be even better.

[deleted account]

I'm with Teresa; it's just not feasible for us right now and I honestly cannot imagine a time when it will be. We are in a small space, we have a child of our own who we need to focus a great deal on, and foster children need A LOT of care and patients. They come with issues that go far beyond the issues our children, who have been loved and cared for by the same parents all of their lives, face.



I do volunteer with emotionally unstable children, about 20 of whom are in foster care at the moment. I think it is that experience that has convinced me that I am simply not prepared to foster a child full time.

[deleted account]

I would foster parent. I love helping people. I dont have the space to currently, i will defiantly do it in the future.

Tara - posted on 02/26/2011

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I have fostered, and I have also been a one to one worker with teen foster girls. My ex husband ran a section 20 school. (a special school for hard to place foster children, staffed by child and youth workers as well as a certified teacher.)
This was my life for most of my marriage.
It can be draining, it can be stressful it can be emotionally painful, it can also be rewarding, challenging, enlightening, enriching for the whole family, it can also be one of the best things to happen to some children in the system. When a child is placed with the right family, who receive proper training and support the outcome can be life changing.
We only ever had teens and special needs children. When my kids are grown up I might consider fostering infants and toddlers and younger children, if I still have any energy left in me by then!
People who go into it as an income source are going to be disappointed, it's not lucrative and even if it were that is no reason to become a foster parent.
My biggest issue when we did it was the fact that as teens they rarely stayed long enough to evoke much change. Many of them were from Native Reserves in Northern Ontario, many ended up going back only to return into the system a year later. It was hard when I would finally start gaining some girls trust and she would start to disclose things to me and then all of a sudden she is going home to live with an "Aunty" and then she's back in the same crowd, doing the same shit...

[deleted account]

No, no, and no. I do think it is a good thing and I know a couple who are foster parents and I'd love to be willing to do it. I don't have the space and I'm really not sure I would have the energy/strength/patience to deal w/ someone else's kid 24/7... even short term. If I did.... I probably wouldn't have the heart to give them back, so that would be too much for me as well.



I might be able to handle it in 10+ years though. You never know....

Kate CP - posted on 02/26/2011

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After my kids are grown I've actually toyed with the idea. I feel so much for the kids who need a soft place to fall. And the fact that there aren't enough (good) foster homes really makes me want to do something. I don't know if I'd be any good at it but I honestly DO want to foster kids at some point.

Merry - posted on 02/26/2011

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I'm glad your niece is getting some solid help! I know there's some good foster families but it's sad that anyone could get past their checks and get in just for the money. It's a sad low down way to earn money that's for sure.
I too will for sure be signing up at one point, but with small kids I completely agree you just don't have the ability to be a quality foster mom along with your own young ones.

Louise - posted on 02/26/2011

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I think there are some very good foster parents out there and then again there are foster parents out there that are just after the money!



My neice is in foster care because she has lots of problems that makes it unsafe for me to take her in with such a young child in the house. She is getting excellent help and support from this family as they have been trained to deal with troubled teens. They really have done an amazing job with her that has helped her intergrate back into the family.



Yet I know of another family that is fostering that is not giving the support and guidance that the children need and are left to run riot around the town. Why the government have not cracked down on this I do not know. This family is obviously after the money. If you go on the foster care courses you can be given £280 a week for one child! A huge amount I know but true.



I have thought about fostering but have never found the right time. It involves the whole family and not just me so it is a big step to take. I think in the future I will look into this a bit more seriously but for now I have my hands full with my 2 year old.

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