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Are you considering foster care for fostering or adopting? Know someone who is? What's foster care really like? See below.

"It is ten o’clock at night. There is a knock at your door. Government agents force their way in, ignoring your protests, and demand that you come with them. They briefly explain that you are being relocated and that you have ten minutes to pack one bag with the belongings you will be taking with you. You may take nothing that will not fit into the bag. You may not talk to your family nor tell them good bye. You do not know where you are going. Sound like fiction? Can’t happen to you? Yet that is exactly what thousands of children experience on a daily basis when they are taken into foster care. Bringing a foster child into your home for the first time is not an easy experience. It is scary and filled with many problems. With a little thought, consideration and understanding many common problems can be avoided."

This is a brief article that details problems that you may face as a foster parent and helpful solutions. :)

Answer Question

Asked by doodlebopfan at 5:59 PM on Feb. 19, 2010 in Adoption

Level 20 (9,525 Credits)
Answers (13)
  • Very short article.


    I knew very little before going into foster care orientation. Even if you've never considered it, maybe you'll view it differently. Maybe it will help you understand what it's like for the child, especially the one that you are wanting to adopt. Hope this helps. :)

    Comments or thoughts welcomed.


    Answer by doodlebopfan at 6:00 PM on Feb. 19, 2010

  • My parents both fostered and adopted when I was growing up. I will do neither.

    Answer by Pnukey at 6:01 PM on Feb. 19, 2010

  • I was a foster child and umm i didnt get any bag. I had to leave everything at home. They came during the day and let me say goodbye to my mother. The hardest part of foster care was living with strangers.

    Answer by ChaoticSoul at 6:04 PM on Feb. 19, 2010

  • To the OP -I don't have experience with foster care, either as a FC or a FP, but I thought you did a great job of showing what it might be like for a kid who is suddenly uprooted. In your experience, did you see potential foster parents who entered the process with no idea of what to expect, or what the kids had been through, but came out of it prepared? From listening to all of the FPs here, it seems like you get extensive training and preparation. Did you feel that your program did a good job of preparing you?

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 11:55 AM on Feb. 20, 2010

  • This is somewhat misleading. First of all the norm for late night removal is that the police have been called to the location for something other then a child abuse report. Usually it's drugs, fighting, gunfire, etc and actually involves adults. At that point CPS is called in for the removal of the child. I know in our county that they try to have the child bring a bag of clothes and some "comfort" item if possible but due to a crime having happened in the house they need to get the child out quickly. I'll also tell you that as a foster parents at times you cringe when these items come into your house due to the smell, bugs, etc. It may sound mean but everything cont..

    Child abuse reports are first investigated before removal happens. They don't just bust down the doors and remove a child due to a report being filed. CPS goes out and talks to the adults at the address, check out the home, etc before making a determination.

    Answer by baconbits at 3:55 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

  • that comes into our home is washed & dryed to help prevent the spread of this. There are other children in the house that you don't want things spread to. (sorry this part is out of order)

    CPS will also check the child over for brusies, food in the cabinet, etc before making a determination. All of this happens during the daylight hours and they try to remove during those hours as well. They do have a heart and don't want a child hurt anymore then they have to.

    I've had over 60 foster children & almost half of them were late night removals and 100% of them had to do with a crime committed that brought the police to the home first.

    Answer by baconbits at 3:58 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

  • I hope that the readers are realizing that the original post is only the first paragraph of the short article. The link shows it in its entirety.

    Baconbits, what part is misleading? The 10:00pm part? The point of the post was SUPPOSED to let potential foster parents understand what a child may have been thru prior to coming to their home & the reasons behind the "bad behavior" and that you cannot expect a foster child to "immediately" act like a typical 2 y/o, 4 y/o, 8 y/o, etc. as though you had raised them on your own to this level. It's to remind foster parents that these children may not FEEL safe in your home, even though YOU know that your home is safe for them. It's to remind foster parents that just because you TELL a child something 100x, that he still may not understand or believe you. It's to make all FP's remember to be patient, kind, and loving, expecting little progress, and progress only at the child's pace.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 4:20 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

  • (con't) Regardless of the time of day or reason, an authority (NOT their parents & unknown to the children) are taking them away from their home. They are taking very few possessions. They're going to be taken to CPS or wherever (another place that they do not know with more people that they do not know & they have no say in the matter.) Then at some point, they are going to be taken to a foster or group home with yet MORE people, kids, animals-maybe, that they don't know, & they are expected (in some cases) to just act like they are nieces, brothers, children that we've known forever, that you are part of the family now, when all they are thinking is, "GET ME BACK TO MY FAMILY!" and the more they try, the more frustrated they become. They may be verbally limited, or may have just come from another foster home where the family was in crisis. We have to remember that WE are the ones who understand and THE CHILDREN do not.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 4:34 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

  • (con't) Baconbits, I am very glad that you replied. You have worked with many children and have much experience with the system. You've also (the article lacked) remembered that sometimes a CRIME has been committed adding to the trauma that the children have experienced.

    But even without a crime, the child may feel helpless, out of control, distrustful, (but having to "appear" that they trust) fearful, angry, sad, & that we cannot expect too much too soon. Often when I hear that "getting them into a routine" is the best way to make them feel safe, I wonder, how many remember to make into the routine some alone time for each child, & taking the time to listen, learn, understand, and prevent as many fears as possible. Only WE know that the children are loved and safe. They don't & won't even when we tell them, over & over & over. Would you agree? It takes time for the child to "settle" and "learn by seeing" that we're safe?

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 4:42 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

  • Quoting baconbits-CPS will also check the child over for brusies, food in the cabinet, etc before making a determination. All of this happens during the daylight hours and they try to remove during those hours as well. They do have a heart and don't want a child hurt anymore then they have to.

    OK, I re-read & I now see what you are saying. That CPS isn't necessarily evil people, sneaking in the night, grabbing children from their beds. I have NOT communicated this info very well at all. My point ISN'T about CPS hurting children. My point is that children ARE HURTING INSIDE when they come to the loving, caring, waiting-for-you-for-months foster parents. The info was intended to address the behaviors & anxieties that children WILL HAVE when taken into our homes. No matter how good our intentions are, we are nevertheless "strangers" to these little (& big) ones.

    But the WHOLE article is in the LINK. I admit to the "tease."

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 5:49 PM on Feb. 22, 2010

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