Supporting a Foster Child who was Born into a Home with Addicted Parents

Supporting a Foster Child who was Born into a Home with Addicted Parents

The opioid epidemic is pushing more and more children into foster care, as their parents are unfit to care for them while they are bound tightly by the grips of addiction. Foster children who were born into a family with addicted parents have likely seen the unthinkable, have been forced to mature far too quickly, and have unique experiences that set them apart from other foster children. The Washington Post reports that nearly every state in the nation has seen a rise in the number of children being put into foster care directly related to opioid addiction as their parents are deemed unfit to care for their children. Perhaps the child you are fostering is an infant who was born addicted to opioids or they are an older child who has seen first hand the detrimental effects opioids can reap upon a family. Regardless of the circumstances, there are important

7 Resources Foster Parents Need To Know About

  Fostering is a tough decision to make; it brings with it joys and trials like any kind of parenting holds. While vastly rewarding, it holds certain challenges. The following are seven resources every foster parent should have.A Fostering MentorWhen you know someone who has already journeyed the path of fostering and/or adoption, that person can be an amazing resource for foster parents. Parenting, in and of itself, is a challenge. For new parents, knowing whether or not a behavior or quirk in personality is normal can be tricky. This is particularly true in foster parenting. Attachment in fostering can appear quite different than in those traditional parenting scenarios. When experiencing these differences, they can be worrisome or confusing. Having a mentor in your life, someone of whom you can make queries known or to whom you can voice concerns is vastly helpful. A mentor can assuage your fears and

Age Appropriate Therapies for Foster Children

 No matter what type of situation a foster child has come from, they have the potential to thrive in a loving and nurturing home. Therapy gives a foster child the ability to regain lost ground. The most potent forms of therapy have an underlying theme of self-empowerment. Depending on the age of the child and what needs to be addressed, these methods may be used together.Cognitive-Behavioral TherapyCognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) takes into consideration the way the child is thinking and works with them to build new behaviors. This form of therapy is best for older children who can sit and communicate effectively. It works to promote emotional growth. Your foster child will be able to learn to understand the intense emotions including those that are attached to past events. From there they can practice how to control those feelings more effectively. Instead of displaying defiant behaviors, a child can begin to use other

Life Lessons to Teach Your Foster Child

Whether you are fostering or adopting a child, once of the biggest questions you will undoubtedly ask yourself is: what life skills and values  you would like to instill in them? While it is true that all children have their own talents, interests, and outlooks on life, there are important lessons that nearly everyone can take with them in their adulthood. Take time to think about the things that matter to you and the extent to which specific skills or behaviors have helped you, and try to synthesize this into a small but valuable list. If you need a little inspiration, perhaps the following life lessons can be of help.Being a Team PlayerWhile independence and learning to stand on your own two feet are crucial for your health and happiness, most scenarios in your child’s life will involve working in a team – including school sports, friendship groups, and work settings. Even being in a relationship

Relationship Building: Birth Parents & Foster Families

  As a new foster parent, having knowledge of the details of a foster child’s past can be a challenge. These past experiences can be complex and there is a learning curve that comes with a foster parent figuring out how to approach their new child. An effective solution can arise from foster parents reaching out to birth parents. According to an academic article Building Bridges: Linking Foster and Birth Parents for the Sake of the Child,  “Reaching out to a biological parent can sometimes provide a window into the child’s past, as well as their future”. This article explains that building this relationship with birth parents can become a necessity for a child’s overall well-being. When a child’s foster and birth parents have a positive relationship, the child becomes more at ease because a difficult situation has mended. Donna Foster, author of Fostering Perspectives: Building a Positive Relationship with Birth Parents, explains

What Foster Parents Wish Other People Knew

 Blogger Sharon Astyk compiles an honest list confronting misconceptions regarding foster parents and foster children, as well as provides advice in reference to the proper behavior towards the foster care system as a whole. Her recent article “What Foster Parents Wish Other People Knew” works to relate to the foster parent population while reaching out and educating a new audience.By: Sharon Astyk”This essay is a little different than most of my stuff. It is the result of a collaborative discussion on a foster parenting list I’m a part of by a group of foster parents.  I’ve paraphrased and borrowed and added some things of my own, but this is truly collaborative piece, and meant to be shared.  I do NOT have to get credit for it.  So if you’d like to circulate it, use it in a training, distribute it at foster-awareness day, hang it on the wall, run it

A Year in the Life of a Foster Mom

It is the beginning of spring. The cherry trees that flank Bakersfield’s monolithic Department of Human Services building are blooming. As visitors approach the lobby doors, the fragrant white blossoms offer a final moment of solace, a peace before the storm. Inside, the din of screaming infants and toddlers makes it difficult to hear. Social workers stream through a code-protected door, shuttling to and from visiting rooms with parents and children in tow. You can judge the quality of a just-ended visit by the rigidness of a social worker’s face. Here, there are few reasons to smile. In Room 17A, a small reunion is commencing. Teisha Montal is holding baby boy Jedidiah, only 3 weeks old, for the first time since he was taken from her last week on neglect charges. This is the third child taken away from her; the first two she never got back. Here, in a