Here is a handy little infographic about foster care. It provides a slice of what the foster care looks like via statistics.
*This is not my own, just a helpful little resource. The original source is socialwork.simmons.edu
The first bits feel like a bucket of ice dumped on your head.
So it wasn’t all what I thought it was.
As the story continues to unfold, a nagging feeling creeps up the back of your neck.
Maybe they aren’t complete monsters.
The abuse they suffered. The chains and cycles and addictions they are stuck in. The beatings they deal with right now in the midst of striving to get their children back. How they never got a good chance in life.
It is hard in our noisy world to find someone willing to listen. It is hard to be that person, listening. And when you spend so much of your time listening to hard stories from little lips, you find yourself needing someone to listen to YOU for once.
Earlier this year I realized how much I longed to talk to someone who “got it”. I joined a couple of foster care support groups on facebook.* What a difference! In my feed I now had real questions and issues to be addressed. There were foster parents sharing encouraging stories about a kiddo’s progress. To be honest, I was just proud of the fact that I knew their abbreviations. It was like I fit right in to a secret club. 🙂
After introducing myself to the group, I got a message. It was from an editor of a foster care magazine. The editor asked if I would be willing to write an article for the magazine from the perspective of a biological child of foster parents. I jumped from my seat. Someone actually wanted to hear what I had to say? Someone was asking me to talk more about foster care???
You probably know how those conversations go. You mention your family is a foster family and they cut you off with
“Oh, I thought about doing foster care”
Quickly followed by the cringe-worthy
“But I would just love the kids too much to give them back.”