Tips For New Foster Parents
Giving foster care to children is the noblest thing that a couple can do. All the childless couples who do not have the budget for fertility clinics or cannot go through the hassle of international adoption can choose to give foster care to kids who face abuse or get neglected by their families. You can take these needy children in your care and give them a loving home.
However, there are many who look at foster care poorly and give their altruistic effort a bad name. Despite the good intention behind this initiative, there are many people who go into it for selfish reasons, such as to take government support payments.
Foster care has two very sides to it – a) people who want to benefit from these children’s plight and b) couples who genuinely want to help children in need. This article is meant for people who want to genuinely reach out to children in foster care to give them a real home.
That being said, here are some tips for new foster parents who can do the good deed selflessly.
Keep an Open Mind
Foster care homes and couples who have been in this for a long time suggest that things never really go your way so it is always better to go with an open mind. It is ok to have a plan but don’t get attached to them. Are you thinking of adoption? Thinking of helping teenagers or babies? Rather than feeling stuck with what you want, enjoy what is being offered and make the most of it.
Enjoy Every Moment
You should document every good memory you have with your foster child. From funny stories to fun pictures, you can keep a memory of all these moments to cherish it for a lifetime.
It is Not an Adoption
Foster care is a beautiful way to help children in need but it is not adoption. Anyone who tells you otherwise is not telling you the truth. If you are someone who wants to have their own child or adopt one should especially know this. In fact, these terms are often used interchangeably which is absolutely misleading and false.
According to experts, you cannot get into foster care thinking that you will increase your family size by one. While it is a rare possibility in the near future, it is not a given. In most cases, you will only have these kids for a short duration and they are going to leave eventually. It is better to accept that reality as early as possible.
Child Protection Services suggest that their primary objective is to reunite the child with his respective family. But if you want to adopt a child permanently, then you should consider following that route. You can save yourself a lot of heartache by being practical about this.
Learn to Say Goodbye
One of the biggest fears foster mothers have is the pain of saying goodbye when it is actually time for the child to leave. However, there are many strong couples who were happy to cut the cord after doing their part. It is truly inspiring to see people selflessly give to children who are in need.
That being said, experts suggest that don’t get into foster parenting without a plan. You need to see how you can help a child temporarily. It could be anything from instilling good habits to helping them form a routine. The objective here is to show the child how an actual caring family functions. These kids may have never experienced what it’s’ like to eat dinner together or spend some quality time together on a Sunday. So you need to find a way to help these children when they are in your care.
The trick is to take it slow. Since you don’t know how long the child can stay with you, it is better to take one step at a time. Following a step-by-step approach is the key to doing it successfully.
Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Only take on responsibility if you can fulfill it responsibly. Some of these children may have special needs. So unless you are fully capable of catering to that need, do not get involved. You should know your capability before you commit yourself to these children.</span