Has anyone out there had foster kids?

  1. If so, what were your experiences like?
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   kstec
    No I have never had foster kids, but I was one from the ages of 14 to 18 years. I had a terrible home life so I put myself into foster care. I am presently 35 years old and still have contact with my last set of foster parents. My foster mother even was present when my youngest son was born. They were never able to have kids so they ended up being foster parents. My two boys call them grandma and grandpa and know no different. I commend anyone who does it. It is something that is desperately needed.
  4. by   Christie RN2006
    I have not yet, but I would like to after I get a house! I know of lots of people that have had foster children, and their experiences differ with each child. They told me that it was hard to give up the kids when the time came, but it was always a rewarding experience.
    Last edit by Christie RN2006 on Feb 27, '07 : Reason: typo
  5. by   bookworm1
    Quote from Christie RN2006
    I have not yet, but I would like to after I get a house! I know of lots of people that have had foster children, and their experiences differ with each child. They told me that it was hard to give up the kids when the time came, but it was always a rewarding experience.

    My family fostered for about 8 years. We had to give up our license because we are at capacity (a few never left) and I wanted to pursue nursing. I adore the kids, even the worst ones. I have developed/discovered a 'weird' sense of humor, learning to laugh at things that others would be driven insane by. I wasn't happy with my experiences working with caseworkers that are driven by 'return home at all costs' goals nor by their attitude that any foster parent that strongly advocates for the kids must be in it for adoption rather than just looking out for the kids. Many of the bio parents were difficult but that was to be expected. It takes alot of work to win over the bio parents so that they will trust you enough to learn from you. Any other questions?
  6. by   Soup Turtle
    Quote from bookworm1
    My family fostered for about 8 years. We had to give up our license because we are at capacity (a few never left) and I wanted to pursue nursing. I adore the kids, even the worst ones. I have developed/discovered a 'weird' sense of humor, learning to laugh at things that others would be driven insane by. I wasn't happy with my experiences working with caseworkers that are driven by 'return home at all costs' goals nor by their attitude that any foster parent that strongly advocates for the kids must be in it for adoption rather than just looking out for the kids. Many of the bio parents were difficult but that was to be expected. It takes alot of work to win over the bio parents so that they will trust you enough to learn from you. Any other questions?
    What kinds of dealings did you have with the bio parents?
  7. by   Soup Turtle
    Quote from kstec
    No I have never had foster kids, but I was one from the ages of 14 to 18 years. I had a terrible home life so I put myself into foster care. I am presently 35 years old and still have contact with my last set of foster parents. My foster mother even was present when my youngest son was born. They were never able to have kids so they ended up being foster parents. My two boys call them grandma and grandpa and know no different. I commend anyone who does it. It is something that is desperately needed.
    Thanks for sharing. I am not in a position to have foster kids right now, but I would like to have the experience eventually. I was actually thinking of older children since my home life wasn't too ideal when I was that age. What were your foster parents like? Did you have a friendly type of relationship or a parent/child type of relationship? I'm just trying to figue out how this stuff works. :spin:
  8. by   bookworm1
    I tried to keep the relationships with the older kids friendly. They really didn't feel like they wanted another parent (most still loved or worshipped their folks even when abused). Building trust was the most important thing to fostering mutual respect. foster parents hands are essentially tied when it comes to discipline, so the kids need to trust and respect you before they will take any advice! I usually supervised visitation between my fk and their bio's. I guided discussions, suggested appropriate games and initiated 'therapeutic' play. Sometimes I would take the bio parents shopping if return home was expected to occur soon, to purchase appropriate clothing, shoes, clothes, toys, groceries, furniture. You'd be surprised in how many parents did not even know how to buy clothing in the right size! I would offer 'field trips' off of the regular visiting schedule to encourage the parents to learn how to put the kids needs above their own (using the last $5 on cigarettes vs. an educational toy for the kids). I wanted to be sure that my kids were going home to the best possible situation.
  9. by   traumaRUs
    I'm going to move this to the breakroom for more comments.
  10. by   canoehead
    My parents took foster kids when I was small. I was 3-5yo so don't know all the details, but I can tell you what they told me.

    The kids had definite behavior problems, but I can tell you they cam by them honestly. Mom said she had difficulty with trust every time a child came, and had to put off bathing and hair washing for a few days until they felt comfortable. If you have your own children I recommend they be old enough to understand why these kids need a little more slack and a little more attention.

    The social worker they worked with was not reliable as far as ages and the issues the kids had. Some of it was desperation to find placement, but one year she was bringing a 5yo and a 7yo on the day before Christmas, and arrived with a 6yo and a 9yo that had one small suitcase between them. There was a huge rush to get some kind of Christmas present for each of them, plus some essentials that they didn't have with them.

    My parents were asked to start a group home, but ended up stopping foster care because they spent a lot of time building trust in the kids and then sent them back to the same parents that had abused them, with not much confidence that it wouldn't happen again. Seperation after months of loving them was too hard. The last child they had ended up being my adopted sister. She and her biological sister both stayed with us, but the courts decided their mom was only able to care for one child. If she chose to fight for both they were going to take them both away, so she left my sister in foster care. (It doesn't make any sense but that's what they did) A few years ago I met the biological mom and she WAS a train wreck, even after her kids were grown.

    I guess I would do it cautiously, but do NOT tolerate half truths or lies about the kids. You have a right to know what you are getting into. Perhaps you could start with the younger kids and work up.

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