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Topic : Foster Parenting

Number of Replies: 242
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Created on : Friday, July 01, 2005, 12:27:01 pm
Author : dataimport
Are you a foster parent or interested in becoming one? Are you considering adopting your foster child? Share advice and support with others here.

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November 1, 2007, 11:34 pm CDT

Foster Parenting

Quote From: anitablake

Ok I need some advice.

 

I posted not too long ago about getting a court social worker for my son's custody case that knew my worker.  That put me in touch with the person who ran the group home I lived in as a kid....

 

Now he's emailed me and is going to call me so we can meet up for coffee.  Which is great!  I am SO super excited,!! In Ontario we have laws that say after you age out, you are not suppposed to contact the home for 2 years.  During that time we lost contact, so I haven't seen this man who was like a father to me since 1997.

 

Here's the problem, and Im embarrassed to even say it it so dumb, but it's really bothering me.

I am afriad of meeting up with him.  I used to be skinny and I got very fat.  I am very very overwieght and I was always very thin and pretty as a teen. 

But MOSTLY, I haven't done so well with my life until recently.  I didn't finish high school ( I am doing it now) I never went to college (I am going next year).  I had a string of abusive boyfriends and married the last one.  I got pregnant before we were married and divotced him less than a year after we were married.  I am now a single mother on welfare taking care of my 2 year old and going to school without anybody helping me....I feel like a failure.

 

Is it better to just cancel the meeting with him?  I am so embarrassed, I have probaly not turned out like he would have liked, and he tryed so hard.....I dont knwo what to do, I tryed my best, but once I aged out, it was like "your on your own kid."  I don't want him to think I am a failure.

HELLO ANITA, HOW ARE YOU DOING ITS BEEN A WHILE IVE BEEN SO BUSY WITH MY 4 KIDS AND HALLOWEEN, THERAPY,CLASSES FOR MY SELF, ITS BEEN CRAZY.HEY GIRL WHAT............YOUR.........FAT..........WHO CARES...........HE DOESN'T CARE IF YOUR OVER WEIGHT YOU'LL BE BEAUTIFUL TO HIM NO MATTER WHAT..........AND YOU HAVEN'T DONE THAT BAD OF A JOB...........YOU DID THE BEST YOU COULD WITH LITTLE HELP AND NO SUPPORT FROM ANYONE......AND YOU HAD THE SMARTS TO GET AWAY FROM THAT CREEP DIDN'T YOU .....YES YOU DID .GO...............YOU'LL SEE.............HE CARES ABOUT YOU. LET ME KNOW.....CAT

 
November 19, 2007, 11:09 pm CST

Adopting foster kids

Quote From: northerngrl

My husband and I planned to adopt two children here in Canada.  They had been apprehended from Social Services and were living in foster care.  They were 5 & 7.  We were told that they had no special needs.  They had not been abused.  Things spiralled out of control after they moved in.  Both had tantrums that could last for hours.  They were diagnosed with ADHD, Reactive Attachment and possibly FAS.  After two years we decided we could not finalize the adoption.  I have felt guilty ever since.  I applaud you all for hanging in there.  I know how difficult it is - especially when there is very little positive coming back from the children.  I wish with all my heart that we could have healed their broken hearts, but we ended up falling apart.  I still talk to them to make sure they are o.k., but I know I have disappointed them immensely.  I hope you know every day how special you are.  Take care of yourself.

 

When I watch Dr. Phil I hear him say how important the children are.  That their needs come first.  I wonder what he would say to a family that tried, but just couldn't do it.  I wish there were resources to help families deal with the crisis that these children bring with them.  We could not find a psychologist or social worker who could help us with what to do in those moments when the children had been screaming for hours.  We needed respite and a back up plan - which we never found. 

 

I wonder if I will ever stop feeling guilty.

I do wish Dr. Phil would approach this subject on adopting and how to deal with foster children's deep issues.  I highly respect him, but this seems to be a subject that he needs more education on.  Even his website offer little support.

 

4 years ago, I answered a call from my niece telling me that her sister's children needed a home because CPS and the police had responded to a call of possible child abuse.  With in 2 hours, I was driving three young children home.  They were 4 1/2, 21 months and 11 months.  With in that short time my world turned upside down and everything about my life changed.  Don't be fooled--there is no such thing as a normal child if that child is removed from their home and is placed in foster care.  I have two birth children and these young children who came to live with me were needy in ways I never had to deal with with my own children.  In a short time I was overwhelmed and sick.  I've never before experience that much outside pressure to meet the needs of three very needy children.  Support was very difficult to find and it still is; although after awhile I did get respite for the oldest.  My character got trashed in ways I hadn't know were possible.  My relationship with my 15 daughter was almost ruined, because suddenly I couldn't be there for her in any way.  There was a point when my birth daughter got so sick and had an extremely high fever and she needed to see a doctor ASAP and I stood there and looked at her and then at the three kids who I needed to attend to also and I cried.  I needed to get them to daycare and school--I couldn't run to the ER with them and attend to my sick daughter at the same time.  I called her dad and told him to come and get in right away.  I was lucky he could drop everything.  He called me later from the Urgent care and said they were worried about her condition and want to transport her by ambulance to the children's wing of a hospital across town--they suspected mennigitis.  I left work and rdrove to the hopsital and I tried to find someone to pick up the kids at daycare for me and 5 different friends and family memebers said no.  Later while at the hospital with my daughter, I told her that I was sorry because sometimes I can't put her first and she responded with "sometimes mom?'  I said well most times and she just shot me a look like yea right! And I said that I guess all the time I can't put you first.  That was a hard truth for us to face. 

 

Those of you who have families, beware of fostering children.  There are some people who can do this with grase and ease--those people usually have lots of support and an over abundance of patience  But I do think that the majority of the family population, would really have a challenge with tfostering.  It's the toughest job out there I believe, because the issues of these children do run deep and they are hard for the average person to handle--the stress can be overwhelming.  The sacrifices great. and never ending. 

 

I did end up adopting my three litle ones and it's still a tough road at times.  I moved the kids out of state so of coarse the family members who asked me to take them in and never offered to provide a home for them are still angry with me.  I moved to a new state for some safety reasons and to be closer to my daughter's college.  I have more family in this area who offered to support me both financially and emotionally.  Well that didn't last too long before they too were attacking my character and trying to make their plans for my life.  I've been called a liar, manipulator, deranged, crazy, and my favorite one "covert aggressor"    from and article down loaded from the internet!  That support abuptly ended within six months of my move to a new state.  It's been tough to make it on my own and take good care of these kids.

 

The kids have come a long way from that moment I brought them home.  They are lovable, kind and social.  Family bonding has been a difficult road and continues to be.  The oldest is FAS, RAD, and ADHD and I'm sure that the other two have some drug and alcohol effects too.  The oldest lies all the time and sometimes he is so convincing.  He sneaks around during the night and hides food in his room.  Everything I try to do to curb this only helps for awhile and then he figures out a way around it.  It seems when I just begin to relax and trust him again, he is back at it.  I don't sleep well any more--waking up 3-5 times per night.  The stress has aged me 10 years and I worry about not only our safety, but our future as a family. 

 

You spoke of feeling guilty.  Sometimes I feel guilty because I took these kids and maybe there was a better family out there for them.  I felt that keeping them inthe family as well as together was so important and that was what kept my commitment to them so strong.  I also counted on family support, when making my decision.  I didn't count on having to deal with being trashed by family members because I'm not perfect and I have my breaking points.  I'm only human but those around me expect much more and I can't live up to those expectations. Sometimes I feel that I steal the joy out of tthe lives of these kids and they suck the joy out of mine because their issues demand so much of my energy.

 

From your letter is seems like you did the best you could do for these children and it wasn't enough.  This caused you to choose between them or your family.  At one point, I was asked to choose between my birth daughter and these kids--not directly but it was implied.  I didn't have enough bedrooms to separate the kids and foster care has their rules, which were over looked for a while because the kids were progressing so well in my home.  then the adoption agency came in with their pressure and their rules and told me to rectify the situation or else.  By then the kids had been with me for two years and were very attached--to them I was their mother.  I was so torn and I feel apart--behind close doors.  My daughter came to me and offered to move in with her dad and while that was a good option for her, I was crushed.  Talk about guilt--been there.  She was afraid the kids would be removed and din't want me to choose between them and her, so she made the decision for me.  I can't evern talk about this or write about this without getting emotional, because my guilt is so vivid.

 

It's taken time, but my relationship with my daughter has improved, but I know that she still bears some scares.  She has always said that I did the right thing in giving these kids a good home, but is sad, and still carries some resentment and jealousy.  She loves the kids and they love her and they irritate her like siblings do.  She adores the youngest and they are best buddies.

 

In the end I would still do it again, but I think I would do things differently.  Wisdom changes who you are and how you respond.  There are many others in your boat who carry the guilt because they ended up giving the child back to the system.  You are not alone and even though you don't know me, I would never judge you harshly for what you did. 

 

Take care and write back if you want to.

 

Sue

 
November 21, 2007, 12:06 am CST

Foster Parenting

Quote From: asmile4all

I do wish Dr. Phil would approach this subject on adopting and how to deal with foster children's deep issues.  I highly respect him, but this seems to be a subject that he needs more education on.  Even his website offer little support.

 

4 years ago, I answered a call from my niece telling me that her sister's children needed a home because CPS and the police had responded to a call of possible child abuse.  With in 2 hours, I was driving three young children home.  They were 4 1/2, 21 months and 11 months.  With in that short time my world turned upside down and everything about my life changed.  Don't be fooled--there is no such thing as a normal child if that child is removed from their home and is placed in foster care.  I have two birth children and these young children who came to live with me were needy in ways I never had to deal with with my own children.  In a short time I was overwhelmed and sick.  I've never before experience that much outside pressure to meet the needs of three very needy children.  Support was very difficult to find and it still is; although after awhile I did get respite for the oldest.  My character got trashed in ways I hadn't know were possible.  My relationship with my 15 daughter was almost ruined, because suddenly I couldn't be there for her in any way.  There was a point when my birth daughter got so sick and had an extremely high fever and she needed to see a doctor ASAP and I stood there and looked at her and then at the three kids who I needed to attend to also and I cried.  I needed to get them to daycare and school--I couldn't run to the ER with them and attend to my sick daughter at the same time.  I called her dad and told him to come and get in right away.  I was lucky he could drop everything.  He called me later from the Urgent care and said they were worried about her condition and want to transport her by ambulance to the children's wing of a hospital across town--they suspected mennigitis.  I left work and rdrove to the hopsital and I tried to find someone to pick up the kids at daycare for me and 5 different friends and family memebers said no.  Later while at the hospital with my daughter, I told her that I was sorry because sometimes I can't put her first and she responded with "sometimes mom?'  I said well most times and she just shot me a look like yea right! And I said that I guess all the time I can't put you first.  That was a hard truth for us to face. 

 

Those of you who have families, beware of fostering children.  There are some people who can do this with grase and ease--those people usually have lots of support and an over abundance of patience  But I do think that the majority of the family population, would really have a challenge with tfostering.  It's the toughest job out there I believe, because the issues of these children do run deep and they are hard for the average person to handle--the stress can be overwhelming.  The sacrifices great. and never ending. 

 

I did end up adopting my three litle ones and it's still a tough road at times.  I moved the kids out of state so of coarse the family members who asked me to take them in and never offered to provide a home for them are still angry with me.  I moved to a new state for some safety reasons and to be closer to my daughter's college.  I have more family in this area who offered to support me both financially and emotionally.  Well that didn't last too long before they too were attacking my character and trying to make their plans for my life.  I've been called a liar, manipulator, deranged, crazy, and my favorite one "covert aggressor"    from and article down loaded from the internet!  That support abuptly ended within six months of my move to a new state.  It's been tough to make it on my own and take good care of these kids.

 

The kids have come a long way from that moment I brought them home.  They are lovable, kind and social.  Family bonding has been a difficult road and continues to be.  The oldest is FAS, RAD, and ADHD and I'm sure that the other two have some drug and alcohol effects too.  The oldest lies all the time and sometimes he is so convincing.  He sneaks around during the night and hides food in his room.  Everything I try to do to curb this only helps for awhile and then he figures out a way around it.  It seems when I just begin to relax and trust him again, he is back at it.  I don't sleep well any more--waking up 3-5 times per night.  The stress has aged me 10 years and I worry about not only our safety, but our future as a family. 

 

You spoke of feeling guilty.  Sometimes I feel guilty because I took these kids and maybe there was a better family out there for them.  I felt that keeping them inthe family as well as together was so important and that was what kept my commitment to them so strong.  I also counted on family support, when making my decision.  I didn't count on having to deal with being trashed by family members because I'm not perfect and I have my breaking points.  I'm only human but those around me expect much more and I can't live up to those expectations. Sometimes I feel that I steal the joy out of tthe lives of these kids and they suck the joy out of mine because their issues demand so much of my energy.

 

From your letter is seems like you did the best you could do for these children and it wasn't enough.  This caused you to choose between them or your family.  At one point, I was asked to choose between my birth daughter and these kids--not directly but it was implied.  I didn't have enough bedrooms to separate the kids and foster care has their rules, which were over looked for a while because the kids were progressing so well in my home.  then the adoption agency came in with their pressure and their rules and told me to rectify the situation or else.  By then the kids had been with me for two years and were very attached--to them I was their mother.  I was so torn and I feel apart--behind close doors.  My daughter came to me and offered to move in with her dad and while that was a good option for her, I was crushed.  Talk about guilt--been there.  She was afraid the kids would be removed and din't want me to choose between them and her, so she made the decision for me.  I can't evern talk about this or write about this without getting emotional, because my guilt is so vivid.

 

It's taken time, but my relationship with my daughter has improved, but I know that she still bears some scares.  She has always said that I did the right thing in giving these kids a good home, but is sad, and still carries some resentment and jealousy.  She loves the kids and they love her and they irritate her like siblings do.  She adores the youngest and they are best buddies.

 

In the end I would still do it again, but I think I would do things differently.  Wisdom changes who you are and how you respond.  There are many others in your boat who carry the guilt because they ended up giving the child back to the system.  You are not alone and even though you don't know me, I would never judge you harshly for what you did. 

 

Take care and write back if you want to.

 

Sue

SUE.......YOU ARE MY HERO.............I LOVED YOUR STORY. YOU CANT IMAGINE WHAT A GOOD THING YOU HAVE DONE FOR THOSE KIDS..........I'M A TREATMENT FOSTER PARENT AND ADOPTED TWO BOYS 6 AND 7 THIS YEAR.I MY SELF HAVE 3 ADULT KIDS AND 7 GRAND CHILDREN I HAVE A GREAT SUPPORT GROUP TO HELP ME . THEY TEACH US       TO ALWAYS MAKE YOUR KIDS FIRST    BUT ITS HARD .AND YOUR KIDS DO FEEL JEALOUS. MY KIDS WERE ALL GONE BY THE TIME WE BECAME TREATMENT PARENTS SO IT WASN'T SO HARD. THOSE KIDS WOULD EVER HAD A CHANCE IF THEY WEREN'T WITH YOU ....YOUR THERE BLOOD AND YOU GAVE UP SO MUCH TO BE THERE FOR THEM NOT ANY OF THOSE WHO WERE GIVING YOU HELL AND HELP  FOR AWHILE THEY STILL HAVE TO LIVE WITH THEM SELF........MY OWN KIDS TELL ME WOW   MOM YOUR SUCH A GREAT MOM NOW ...........BUT YOU DO EVERYTHING WITH SUNNY AND SAMMY I WISH YOU DID THAT FOR ME ........THAT MAKES ME SO SAD TO HEAR THAT BUT THEIR RIGHT...........I TELL THEM .HEY BUT I'M A GREAT GRANDMA  RIGHT............I WISH I KNEW  THAN WHAT I KNOW NOW  I MIGHT HAVE BEEN A BETTER MOTHER .....LONG WORKING HOURS .............SO NOW I HAVE 2 FOSTER KIDS AND MY 2 BOYS ITS HARD............I TRY TO TREAT THEM ALL THE SAME............BUT SAMMY AND SUNNY DO COME FIRST.I JUST WANTED TO SAY THANK YOU FOR BEING THERE FOR THOSE KIDS SOME ONE HAD TO HAVE A BIG HEART THAT WAS YOU SUE...........CAT

 
November 23, 2007, 9:28 pm CST

adopted my foster children

Quote From: asmile4all

I do wish Dr. Phil would approach this subject on adopting and how to deal with foster children's deep issues.  I highly respect him, but this seems to be a subject that he needs more education on.  Even his website offer little support.

 

4 years ago, I answered a call from my niece telling me that her sister's children needed a home because CPS and the police had responded to a call of possible child abuse.  With in 2 hours, I was driving three young children home.  They were 4 1/2, 21 months and 11 months.  With in that short time my world turned upside down and everything about my life changed.  Don't be fooled--there is no such thing as a normal child if that child is removed from their home and is placed in foster care.  I have two birth children and these young children who came to live with me were needy in ways I never had to deal with with my own children.  In a short time I was overwhelmed and sick.  I've never before experience that much outside pressure to meet the needs of three very needy children.  Support was very difficult to find and it still is; although after awhile I did get respite for the oldest.  My character got trashed in ways I hadn't know were possible.  My relationship with my 15 daughter was almost ruined, because suddenly I couldn't be there for her in any way.  There was a point when my birth daughter got so sick and had an extremely high fever and she needed to see a doctor ASAP and I stood there and looked at her and then at the three kids who I needed to attend to also and I cried.  I needed to get them to daycare and school--I couldn't run to the ER with them and attend to my sick daughter at the same time.  I called her dad and told him to come and get in right away.  I was lucky he could drop everything.  He called me later from the Urgent care and said they were worried about her condition and want to transport her by ambulance to the children's wing of a hospital across town--they suspected mennigitis.  I left work and rdrove to the hopsital and I tried to find someone to pick up the kids at daycare for me and 5 different friends and family memebers said no.  Later while at the hospital with my daughter, I told her that I was sorry because sometimes I can't put her first and she responded with "sometimes mom?'  I said well most times and she just shot me a look like yea right! And I said that I guess all the time I can't put you first.  That was a hard truth for us to face. 

 

Those of you who have families, beware of fostering children.  There are some people who can do this with grase and ease--those people usually have lots of support and an over abundance of patience  But I do think that the majority of the family population, would really have a challenge with tfostering.  It's the toughest job out there I believe, because the issues of these children do run deep and they are hard for the average person to handle--the stress can be overwhelming.  The sacrifices great. and never ending. 

 

I did end up adopting my three litle ones and it's still a tough road at times.  I moved the kids out of state so of coarse the family members who asked me to take them in and never offered to provide a home for them are still angry with me.  I moved to a new state for some safety reasons and to be closer to my daughter's college.  I have more family in this area who offered to support me both financially and emotionally.  Well that didn't last too long before they too were attacking my character and trying to make their plans for my life.  I've been called a liar, manipulator, deranged, crazy, and my favorite one "covert aggressor"    from and article down loaded from the internet!  That support abuptly ended within six months of my move to a new state.  It's been tough to make it on my own and take good care of these kids.

 

The kids have come a long way from that moment I brought them home.  They are lovable, kind and social.  Family bonding has been a difficult road and continues to be.  The oldest is FAS, RAD, and ADHD and I'm sure that the other two have some drug and alcohol effects too.  The oldest lies all the time and sometimes he is so convincing.  He sneaks around during the night and hides food in his room.  Everything I try to do to curb this only helps for awhile and then he figures out a way around it.  It seems when I just begin to relax and trust him again, he is back at it.  I don't sleep well any more--waking up 3-5 times per night.  The stress has aged me 10 years and I worry about not only our safety, but our future as a family. 

 

You spoke of feeling guilty.  Sometimes I feel guilty because I took these kids and maybe there was a better family out there for them.  I felt that keeping them inthe family as well as together was so important and that was what kept my commitment to them so strong.  I also counted on family support, when making my decision.  I didn't count on having to deal with being trashed by family members because I'm not perfect and I have my breaking points.  I'm only human but those around me expect much more and I can't live up to those expectations. Sometimes I feel that I steal the joy out of tthe lives of these kids and they suck the joy out of mine because their issues demand so much of my energy.

 

From your letter is seems like you did the best you could do for these children and it wasn't enough.  This caused you to choose between them or your family.  At one point, I was asked to choose between my birth daughter and these kids--not directly but it was implied.  I didn't have enough bedrooms to separate the kids and foster care has their rules, which were over looked for a while because the kids were progressing so well in my home.  then the adoption agency came in with their pressure and their rules and told me to rectify the situation or else.  By then the kids had been with me for two years and were very attached--to them I was their mother.  I was so torn and I feel apart--behind close doors.  My daughter came to me and offered to move in with her dad and while that was a good option for her, I was crushed.  Talk about guilt--been there.  She was afraid the kids would be removed and din't want me to choose between them and her, so she made the decision for me.  I can't evern talk about this or write about this without getting emotional, because my guilt is so vivid.

 

It's taken time, but my relationship with my daughter has improved, but I know that she still bears some scares.  She has always said that I did the right thing in giving these kids a good home, but is sad, and still carries some resentment and jealousy.  She loves the kids and they love her and they irritate her like siblings do.  She adores the youngest and they are best buddies.

 

In the end I would still do it again, but I think I would do things differently.  Wisdom changes who you are and how you respond.  There are many others in your boat who carry the guilt because they ended up giving the child back to the system.  You are not alone and even though you don't know me, I would never judge you harshly for what you did. 

 

Take care and write back if you want to.

 

Sue

Dear Sue,

You are right, wisdom does change you and how you respond.  I took in my first foster child in 2001.  From 2001-2003, I had the pleasure of fostering two different sibling sets as well as several other kids.  I usually had four kids at a time, but for a few weeks I even had five children at one time.  At times, things were really tough as it seemed like I had little or no support.  I still carry guilt over one particular child who I feel like I gave up on.  She came to me when she was 10.  She had severe reactive attachment disorder and had a past that seemed to have come from a horror movie.  She lived with me for a year...her longest placement ever... Things got very hard for me as a single mom to continue in the day to day stress.  I finally had to have her moved.  From then on she never lasted more that one day in a placement and ended up in a group home.  It's like my decision to let her go made her life spiral out of control.  Every once in a while I hear from former social workers about her.  She has had several "pimps", has been prosituting and been on the run.  I often wonder if she would still be making those poor choices if I would have hung in there with her. 

 

You know, we can't change the past.  And I think that God allowed her into my life to prepare me for what was ahead.  In October of 2003 I got a call that three siblings needed a home who would be willing to adopt if it came to that point.  I excitedly (and nervously) accepted the placement.  The kids were only ages 2 1/2, 16 months and 5 months.  The county never tells you much about the children or their history.  When the kids came, I realized that I had just accepted the biggest challenge of my life.  The oldest basically ran around screaming and had very little language.  He did know the word "shut up" and spoke it very clearly.  The first thing I thought when I met him what that he may be autistic.  The 16 month old was extremely active and on the move all day.  The two boys fought a lot and had no boundaries and appeared to never have been disciplined effectively.  The baby was very small.  She was only 10 pounds that day and was 5 months old.  She was pretty lathargic and looked scared.  I was the fourth home for the boys in a five month period.  I was the baby's 5th home from the day she was born.  That is outrages and still makes me sad.  The oldest could not slow himself down to sleep and it would take me over 2 hours to get him to fall asleep.  He would also have incredible raging tantrums that would last for hours. 

 

Not long after the kids came to me, I found out that their birth mother was pregnant again.  Just five months after I met the family, we had a new addition.  She was born testing positive to meth.  Mom used meth, marijuana, and was a heavy smoker during her pregnancies.  It made me so sad that she wasn't attempting to make better choices after already losing 3 kids.  This poor helpless baby was poisened by the person who should have been loving her the most.  That is when it became more real to me, when I had to help her through the withdrawls, and watch her gag on the phenobarbitol.  It was then when I really realized that they system is not set up to prevent repeat offenses or to help the children.  There are so many kids being born to drug addicted mothers.  We all know it is happening and that it is a huge problem.  But really, what is being done to stop it.  There has got to be a way to stop it before it happens. 

 

I have since adopted my four children.  The adoption finalized in 2005 when they were ages 4, 3, 2, and 1.  They are all doing well.  My oldest has been the most severly affected and has been diagnosed with a mood disorder, adhd symptoms, and PDD-NOS (atypical autism), and possibly FAE.  He has to take a great deal of medication to help control his moods and impulse control.  He still struggles with a very short attention span and functions on about a 2-3year old level emotionally/socially. He has come a long way though and day by day is learning better how to function in this world. My other son has ADHD and has been on meds for about a year.  He functions very well when he is on his meds and is a great student.  He started kindergarten this year.  My oldest daughter shows some of the same symptoms of my oldest son, however more mild.  She is a very sweet natured child.  My youngest daughter deals with other issues.  She has multiple food allergies (allergic to wheat, soy, rye, egg yolk, and milk).  That opened up a whole new world for me!!  She also battles GI problems and delayed growth. 

 

As hard as things can get and as tired as I sometimes feel, I would never desire to turn back the clock and change the decisions I have made. I have learned a lot over the past several years.  I think one thing that being a foster/adoptive parent gave me was the chance to get out of my little box and to experience first hand really what is going on in our world. 

 

I understand what you have been through and hope the best for you and your family.  It's nice to know that I am not alone!

 

God Bless you!

Terri

 
November 27, 2007, 4:30 pm CST

foster children in need

im writing this on behalf of another family. they have taken on 3 foster children with past sexual trama and abuse..the oldest foster child has already raped and molesed his younger siblings.  they have tried to get help for the oldest boy which they did not know the history of the child before they took him home cps ikeep this information a secret from them.  after they realized that the boy was doing theses things to his siblings they tried all kinds of wasy to prevent it and to hlep the kids.  but  cps is threating the husband saying that if he bring the child back home from the mental hospital they will take away his licences to pratice medicen but they are also saying that if they dont go get him that they will do the same thing for negleting him and also take the other two children..they love all three kids but they need help with the oldst one preator nature and they need help with the other two to help them deal with what has happened to them.  they dont want to lose any of the children but they fear for the youngr ones.  they have located a place that will help him but the coast is 10,000 a month and they dont have the money to get him ther they are rally needing help and have asked me if i would contact you.     please someone help this family

 

thanks rachel

 
December 19, 2007, 5:37 pm CST

I need help

i have 2 kids in care a 9 y.o boy and a 4.5 y.o girl my son has a mild case of aspergers and ADHD and my daughter seems to have issues too  (its a bit early to tell what yet) the problem is that i am unable to see them as much as i want to (even as much as my court order says) this is due to the welfare department (DOCS) where i am told me it would be better for the kids for me to see them every other month

my problem is that i want to go back to monthly cantact but i find myself struggling with the visits i have now both kids what to be the center of attention i cant split the visits due to my sons reactions (he gets violent towars his sister) and i dont want every visit to be a stree fest for me i have tried to look into courses to do but everyone i look at im told isnt sutible cause i dont have day to day care of the kids

So I find myself wondering what to do next? i want to see more of em but cant cope with the time i already have i want to be there for my children if they ever need me but how to i learn how to be a god mum when there is no one round to help me (my own mother has a brain injury and cant/wont help me) how can i be a good parent to my kids when all i've ever known was parents who dragged me to doctors my whole life and when i rebelled they washed their hands of me even now im trying to repair our relationship but they wont be in it

my whole life is going down the drain its even affecting my relationship with my boyfriend cause he cant understand why i feel so so i wish i knew what to do is there anyone out there with some advice?

 
December 19, 2007, 5:39 pm CST

Thanks

Quote From: asmile4all

I do wish Dr. Phil would approach this subject on adopting and how to deal with foster children's deep issues.  I highly respect him, but this seems to be a subject that he needs more education on.  Even his website offer little support.

 

4 years ago, I answered a call from my niece telling me that her sister's children needed a home because CPS and the police had responded to a call of possible child abuse.  With in 2 hours, I was driving three young children home.  They were 4 1/2, 21 months and 11 months.  With in that short time my world turned upside down and everything about my life changed.  Don't be fooled--there is no such thing as a normal child if that child is removed from their home and is placed in foster care.  I have two birth children and these young children who came to live with me were needy in ways I never had to deal with with my own children.  In a short time I was overwhelmed and sick.  I've never before experience that much outside pressure to meet the needs of three very needy children.  Support was very difficult to find and it still is; although after awhile I did get respite for the oldest.  My character got trashed in ways I hadn't know were possible.  My relationship with my 15 daughter was almost ruined, because suddenly I couldn't be there for her in any way.  There was a point when my birth daughter got so sick and had an extremely high fever and she needed to see a doctor ASAP and I stood there and looked at her and then at the three kids who I needed to attend to also and I cried.  I needed to get them to daycare and school--I couldn't run to the ER with them and attend to my sick daughter at the same time.  I called her dad and told him to come and get in right away.  I was lucky he could drop everything.  He called me later from the Urgent care and said they were worried about her condition and want to transport her by ambulance to the children's wing of a hospital across town--they suspected mennigitis.  I left work and rdrove to the hopsital and I tried to find someone to pick up the kids at daycare for me and 5 different friends and family memebers said no.  Later while at the hospital with my daughter, I told her that I was sorry because sometimes I can't put her first and she responded with "sometimes mom?'  I said well most times and she just shot me a look like yea right! And I said that I guess all the time I can't put you first.  That was a hard truth for us to face. 

 

Those of you who have families, beware of fostering children.  There are some people who can do this with grase and ease--those people usually have lots of support and an over abundance of patience  But I do think that the majority of the family population, would really have a challenge with tfostering.  It's the toughest job out there I believe, because the issues of these children do run deep and they are hard for the average person to handle--the stress can be overwhelming.  The sacrifices great. and never ending. 

 

I did end up adopting my three litle ones and it's still a tough road at times.  I moved the kids out of state so of coarse the family members who asked me to take them in and never offered to provide a home for them are still angry with me.  I moved to a new state for some safety reasons and to be closer to my daughter's college.  I have more family in this area who offered to support me both financially and emotionally.  Well that didn't last too long before they too were attacking my character and trying to make their plans for my life.  I've been called a liar, manipulator, deranged, crazy, and my favorite one "covert aggressor"    from and article down loaded from the internet!  That support abuptly ended within six months of my move to a new state.  It's been tough to make it on my own and take good care of these kids.

 

The kids have come a long way from that moment I brought them home.  They are lovable, kind and social.  Family bonding has been a difficult road and continues to be.  The oldest is FAS, RAD, and ADHD and I'm sure that the other two have some drug and alcohol effects too.  The oldest lies all the time and sometimes he is so convincing.  He sneaks around during the night and hides food in his room.  Everything I try to do to curb this only helps for awhile and then he figures out a way around it.  It seems when I just begin to relax and trust him again, he is back at it.  I don't sleep well any more--waking up 3-5 times per night.  The stress has aged me 10 years and I worry about not only our safety, but our future as a family. 

 

You spoke of feeling guilty.  Sometimes I feel guilty because I took these kids and maybe there was a better family out there for them.  I felt that keeping them inthe family as well as together was so important and that was what kept my commitment to them so strong.  I also counted on family support, when making my decision.  I didn't count on having to deal with being trashed by family members because I'm not perfect and I have my breaking points.  I'm only human but those around me expect much more and I can't live up to those expectations. Sometimes I feel that I steal the joy out of tthe lives of these kids and they suck the joy out of mine because their issues demand so much of my energy.

 

From your letter is seems like you did the best you could do for these children and it wasn't enough.  This caused you to choose between them or your family.  At one point, I was asked to choose between my birth daughter and these kids--not directly but it was implied.  I didn't have enough bedrooms to separate the kids and foster care has their rules, which were over looked for a while because the kids were progressing so well in my home.  then the adoption agency came in with their pressure and their rules and told me to rectify the situation or else.  By then the kids had been with me for two years and were very attached--to them I was their mother.  I was so torn and I feel apart--behind close doors.  My daughter came to me and offered to move in with her dad and while that was a good option for her, I was crushed.  Talk about guilt--been there.  She was afraid the kids would be removed and din't want me to choose between them and her, so she made the decision for me.  I can't evern talk about this or write about this without getting emotional, because my guilt is so vivid.

 

It's taken time, but my relationship with my daughter has improved, but I know that she still bears some scares.  She has always said that I did the right thing in giving these kids a good home, but is sad, and still carries some resentment and jealousy.  She loves the kids and they love her and they irritate her like siblings do.  She adores the youngest and they are best buddies.

 

In the end I would still do it again, but I think I would do things differently.  Wisdom changes who you are and how you respond.  There are many others in your boat who carry the guilt because they ended up giving the child back to the system.  You are not alone and even though you don't know me, I would never judge you harshly for what you did. 

 

Take care and write back if you want to.

 

Sue

Thank you for your e-mail. 

 

I haven't been on-line for awhile.  Christmas is difficult as it is hard to relax and enjoy the peace knowing that K & M are not here and do not have a family to share Christmas with.

 

I think my guilt stems from actually being forced to choose.  Ultimately I was too exhausted and stressed out to care for them on my own.  It is not an easy job for a two parent family - I think it would have been impossible for me to do on my own. 

 

I hear what you say about being judged. I felt that from my family as well.  The children had extremely difficult behaviors and with RAD they could not bond - especially with extended family - which made everything more difficult.  No one seemed to understand the decisions that we made and what we were doing to try and protect them from being overstimulated.  No one could understand why we couldn't do "normal" things anymore.

 

There is no "better" family.  I am trying to believe I did the best I could.  I believe that most other people who bring these children into their homes are also coping as well as they can - with little or no resources to support them.  I wish I could have given them more - espcially I wish I could have given them peace.  It is so difficult to come to terms with the fact that you cannot give "peacefulness" to a child.  I believed we could heal their wounds - I have learned that they have to heal themselves.  If you are brave, you can give them a safe place to do that, but there is definately a great cost to you and your family when you do that.

 

I hope everyone who is doing this for these children knows what a special gift they are giving.  I admire you all and wish I had your strength and courage.

 
December 21, 2007, 10:10 pm CST

The children of foster parents

My husband and I are foster parents.  We also have 4 biological sons and one pre-adoptive daughter.  Right now we are also fostering 3 children.  My two oldest children are in their early twenties and do not live at home, but they are involved in our lives, occasionally helping us out with all our responsibilities.  That leaves our 3 younger children and our 3 foster children still at home.

 

Tonight, members of the police department that originally contacted social services about the two newest members of our interesting family showed up at our door with armloads of Christmas presents...for these 2 children only.  While this was a wonderful gesture and I don't want to take any of this away from the two children on the receiving end of this generousity, there are 6 children in this home and I feel that it was insensitive to the other 4 children.  I know it was not meant to be, but that doesn't take away from the fact that it was.  Please understand that I don't want to begrudge a kind gesture, which is why I didn't say anything to the gift-givers, but it really hurt my feelings when I had to tell my children that "K" and "D" were going to get a lot of gifts from some "friends" and that there wasn't anything for anyone else.  My 8 year old looked at me and said, "It's OK, I don't need anything."   

 

Fortunately, I had some warning that these well-meaning people were on their way and was able to put the little ones to bed and take the other two to visit with friends during all the hubbub.  When I returned home and my husband told me all the gifts that were brought over (nearly $200.00 worth), I was very glad that I had taken my 11 and 8 year old someplace else.  In spite of all the convincing by my children that they didn't mind "K" and "D" getting this early Christmas, I can't imagine how left-out they would have felt had they been here watching these two new kids opening a Christmas-morning's-worth of gifts while they could do nothing but sit by and watch.  Please know that I "get it".  I know the police wanted to make a difficult time for these kids a little easier, but truly, as foster parents, that is what we are trained to do, and we are doing an excellent job of it...and the police could still have done something special for the kids...maybe material things weren't necessarily the best choice, (even at Christmas, perhaps, especially at Christmas) or maybe they could have been a little more aware of the other kids in the household.  It sounds like I am complaining about this wonderful generousity, but I am not.  I am simply concerned about how my children, who are only children, truly perceive this apparent inequity, especially when they are sacrificing so genuinely without any recognition at all.

 

My children share everything every day with strangers who come and go, most often without ever hearing a thank-you.  They share not only their homes and their things, but they share their parents and have never complained that we don't have enough time for them, even though many times I tell them exactly that:  "I can't right now, I have to give so-and-so a bath," or "So-and-so has a visit or appt. with person X, Y or Z, so I won't be able to see your basketball game today."  My children get ignored, they tolerate other kids breaking their things and invading their space, and they occasionally get hit and are often verbally attacked by kids whom they have welcomed into their home...kids they have welcomed because my husband and I have taught them that it is the right thing to do, that to be part of the solution, one must act. 

 

I am frustrated that there aren't more resources for the children of foster parents, that there isn't more support for them in the community, or at least some recognition of these amazing young people.  They give up everything and nobody notices. 

 

Our county has a few wonderful family events and a few support groups for children like ours whose parents are foster/adopt parents, but very little is available on a regular basis.  And while our county recognizes its foster parents with beautiful events, I know of no event that singles out the children of foster families specifically with recognition just for them.  They are bigger heroes than any of the rest of us.

 

It makes me sad that there is this population of children who are ignored on a regular basis.  I know that the lessons my children are learning will make them better citizens and will help nurture compassion, but just once in a while I'd really appreciate it if someone "out there" would realize the sacrifices our kids make every day, all for the sake of the greater good, and take notice. 

 
January 2, 2008, 5:04 pm CST

A Biological parent who understands

Quote From: cjkool

My husband and I are foster parents.  We also have 4 biological sons and one pre-adoptive daughter.  Right now we are also fostering 3 children.  My two oldest children are in their early twenties and do not live at home, but they are involved in our lives, occasionally helping us out with all our responsibilities.  That leaves our 3 younger children and our 3 foster children still at home.

 

Tonight, members of the police department that originally contacted social services about the two newest members of our interesting family showed up at our door with armloads of Christmas presents...for these 2 children only.  While this was a wonderful gesture and I don't want to take any of this away from the two children on the receiving end of this generousity, there are 6 children in this home and I feel that it was insensitive to the other 4 children.  I know it was not meant to be, but that doesn't take away from the fact that it was.  Please understand that I don't want to begrudge a kind gesture, which is why I didn't say anything to the gift-givers, but it really hurt my feelings when I had to tell my children that "K" and "D" were going to get a lot of gifts from some "friends" and that there wasn't anything for anyone else.  My 8 year old looked at me and said, "It's OK, I don't need anything."   

 

Fortunately, I had some warning that these well-meaning people were on their way and was able to put the little ones to bed and take the other two to visit with friends during all the hubbub.  When I returned home and my husband told me all the gifts that were brought over (nearly $200.00 worth), I was very glad that I had taken my 11 and 8 year old someplace else.  In spite of all the convincing by my children that they didn't mind "K" and "D" getting this early Christmas, I can't imagine how left-out they would have felt had they been here watching these two new kids opening a Christmas-morning's-worth of gifts while they could do nothing but sit by and watch.  Please know that I "get it".  I know the police wanted to make a difficult time for these kids a little easier, but truly, as foster parents, that is what we are trained to do, and we are doing an excellent job of it...and the police could still have done something special for the kids...maybe material things weren't necessarily the best choice, (even at Christmas, perhaps, especially at Christmas) or maybe they could have been a little more aware of the other kids in the household.  It sounds like I am complaining about this wonderful generousity, but I am not.  I am simply concerned about how my children, who are only children, truly perceive this apparent inequity, especially when they are sacrificing so genuinely without any recognition at all.

 

My children share everything every day with strangers who come and go, most often without ever hearing a thank-you.  They share not only their homes and their things, but they share their parents and have never complained that we don't have enough time for them, even though many times I tell them exactly that:  "I can't right now, I have to give so-and-so a bath," or "So-and-so has a visit or appt. with person X, Y or Z, so I won't be able to see your basketball game today."  My children get ignored, they tolerate other kids breaking their things and invading their space, and they occasionally get hit and are often verbally attacked by kids whom they have welcomed into their home...kids they have welcomed because my husband and I have taught them that it is the right thing to do, that to be part of the solution, one must act. 

 

I am frustrated that there aren't more resources for the children of foster parents, that there isn't more support for them in the community, or at least some recognition of these amazing young people.  They give up everything and nobody notices. 

 

Our county has a few wonderful family events and a few support groups for children like ours whose parents are foster/adopt parents, but very little is available on a regular basis.  And while our county recognizes its foster parents with beautiful events, I know of no event that singles out the children of foster families specifically with recognition just for them.  They are bigger heroes than any of the rest of us.

 

It makes me sad that there is this population of children who are ignored on a regular basis.  I know that the lessons my children are learning will make them better citizens and will help nurture compassion, but just once in a while I'd really appreciate it if someone "out there" would realize the sacrifices our kids make every day, all for the sake of the greater good, and take notice. 

I have 2 kids in foster care now and I nderstand what it is that you are going through well im not sure understand is right maybe empithise with you

the placement where my children are has 3 other children (2 more foster kids and 1 biological child of the carers) every christmas and easter I send 5 presents home with my kids one for each of them and one for the kids at home

I know im a the exception rather than the rule but I dont want there to be any extra cause for jealousy (my eldset has asperger's) if biological parents could just put a little of their hurt aside and relise they have to deal with the situation the best that they can and make it work for their kids

Someone really needs to make EVERYONE around the world aware that foster care is about a lot of people not just the carers and the children in need but its also about the carers family I dont think anyone really knows unless they are involved how many people are involved with stuff like this

On this public forum though i'd like to acknowledge my childrens carers biological child C, he is now a teenager and still helps his parents with the foster kids and it seems like he does it with the same loving additude that his parents have when my son's had his first birthday with these people (i think it was his 3rd b'day then) C went out and spent his own birthday money to buy his new little brother a present especially from him i relise he has given up a lot of time with his parents over the years so that the younger ones get everything they need one day i'll get to meet you face to face C and thankyou for this fact

maybe one day the people who organise the gifts for the kids in the system will also relise that that some foster parents have boilogical kids too and start treating these exeptional kids with gifts too

 

we can live in hope right?

 
January 8, 2008, 4:23 pm CST

Fostering a relative

Does anyone here foster a relative?  We are fostering our niece who's mother is in prison and father is in jail.  We are hoping to adopt her this year.  Her mother voluntarilly signed away her rights in August and Dad was TPR's by default.  It took us 11 months to get to this point after the previous foster parents faught us from moving her to our home.  I would really like to fix the ICPC and system in regards to the length of time it took us!  We are still waiting on approval to begin our adoption process.  It's insane to keep the kids in a system with no permanency.  I'm just happy she's here with us and we are moving forward. 

 
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