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Anyone on here ever foster a child or is currently doing so?

I've kinda been thinking about becoming a foster parent. But I really don't know anything about it.
Was it hard?
Did you have a little or older child?
Can you adopt them?
What happens if you and the child don't get along or they have more problems then you can handle?
Do you need to have an overabundant income?
Does the state insure them or do would I need to provide that?
Where they okay with your other children?
Does race play any part in the child that you get?
Can you choose the age group you can foster, I'm 21 so I'd feel a little uncomfortable with a kid thats 16 or 17 would feel more like a brother or sister.
Do you have to deal with the child's parents?

Anything you could tell me would be helpful because I'm very uneducated about how this works.

Answer Question
 
letlovegrow2524

Asked by letlovegrow2524 at 9:50 AM on May. 12, 2011 in General Parenting

Level 17 (3,400 Credits)
Answers (9)
  • I work for a foster care/adoption agency in Texas and currently train and then license new foster parents.

    Was it hard?
    It isn't hard, but just like being a bio parent, it requires patience and a desire to help children.

    Did you have a little or older child?
    I recomend fp's accept children younger than their own bio children so as to not subject their own children to any negative behaviors.

    Can you adopt them? Yes, if parental rights have been terminated (which takes about a year if parents are not working services), and after you have fostered the child for 6 months.

    What happens if you and the child dont get along? You turn in a 30-day notice to your agency and the child would be moved -- assuming you have not already adopted in which case you would be ordered to pay child support.

    Income? You have to pay able to pay your bills without the supplement from foster care. No minimum income.

    BaileysMom476

    Answer by BaileysMom476 at 10:00 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • Thanks! Thats a lot more info then I had before, do the rules differ a lot from state to state? I'm in PA.
    letlovegrow2524

    Comment by letlovegrow2524 (original poster) at 10:06 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • Insurance? All foster children have Star Health (medicaid) medical and dental. When you adopt, you must cover them on your insurance.

    Okay with your children? This really depends on your children and the child you want to foster.

    Race? You can choose the race you want. We have fp's that only want to foster to their own race and we have others that are open to any race. When I am placing a child, I try to place within the same race.

    Age? You can choose the age but the more restrictions you put on a child you would accept, the longer it will take to find a suitable child.

    Bio Parents -- You deal with them ONLY on a casual basis (like if you have to testify in court about things the child said about them or behaviors when placed in your home. It is not encouraged.

    Your home also has to be "verified" so it is safe for a child, and a homestudy (in-depth interview with all family members) must pass state standards.
    BaileysMom476

    Answer by BaileysMom476 at 10:06 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • It's really policy that differs more than rules, but just check the DFPS website for your area and see when they will have the next "information meeting" -- you can get a lot of info from there. You also have to be 21 -- so you passed the first test! lol.
    You need CPR/first aid and other various trainings that your agnecy may provide.

    Your welcome!
    BaileysMom476

    Answer by BaileysMom476 at 10:08 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • I am in Michigan, and have fostered. We went into the program wanting to foster to adopt due to fertility issues I was having at that time. As the PP stated, there is not a minimum income requirement, but they do want to know that you are able to afford your own bills and aren't taking foster children for an income...which, well, would be pretty much impossible for any decent person to do anyway because the compensation is so low that you end up paying more for the child's care than what you receive.

    At least here, they give you a long form that asks you what type of placements you will be willing to accept. Race, age, and gender is on there...but so are things like "children who have shown sexual behaviors to other children", "children who have engaged in arson", etc.

    Know that there are a lot of behavioral problems that can come with children who have been abused badly enough to be removed form the home. Also, for me,
    Mom-2-3-Girlz

    Answer by Mom-2-3-Girlz at 10:30 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • knowing their history and then finding out that they are returning to that home, is absolutely heartbreaking to me. I don't want to discourage you, because children NEED good foster parents. These kids NEED love and to learn what a real family is like, and if you can provide that, it is so valuable to the children.

    I thought of it as "I will love them, show them what a family is like, advocate for them etc while they are here, but if the state decides they are better off with the parents, it is out of my hands".

    Best of luck with whatever you decide!
    Mom-2-3-Girlz

    Answer by Mom-2-3-Girlz at 10:34 AM on May. 12, 2011

  • I like this question, there are not enough good foster homes. My DH and I plan to foster when our kids are a bit older, I was in about six different homes between the ages of 7 and 12 and not one of them was a home I would consider good. Each couple had their own problems and projected them onto us kids. I was split from my siblings, though allowed occasional visits with them if they were placed in homes within the same area that I was. I was abused and neglected - something neither of my parents ever were to us. Happily we all went back to my parents and turned out pretty good.
    anon1986East

    Answer by anon1986East at 2:28 PM on May. 12, 2011

  • I foster children, and I ended up getting my two nieces. It is tough to become a foster parent because the agency wants to make sure no one in your home have felonies, or parolled, drug convictions, and crime on children. They do monthly home visits to check out how you're living, and they give unexpected urine tests to make sure you're not using drugs. After a year, they stop all of this.They really want to make sure the child being placed would be safe. It's a long process, but worth it.
    ambr2006

    Answer by ambr2006 at 2:49 PM on May. 12, 2011

  • Different agencies each have their own policies -- but all must comply with state minimum requirements. We do not drug test our families -- although in some cases, it should be done. Working for an agency and hearing all the things that can and DO happen to children makes me SOOO cautious (even overly ) with my own child. I always want to take the LO's home with me!
    BaileysMom476

    Answer by BaileysMom476 at 8:17 PM on May. 12, 2011

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