How do you give them back?

4 06 2009

That’s the number 1 question just about everyone asks us about fostering.

“Oh I could never foster because I’d never be able to hand them back. I’d get too attached to them.”

Yup – you definitely do get attached, it’s impossible not to, but I bet handing back isn’t as hard as you think. They generally either go back home or on to adoption/permanent foster care. Here’s why I think it’s not that hard:

  1. We’ve scored a goal: By the time it’s time to hand them back – or over to someone else – we’ve been working towards that for quite a while. By the time we achieve it there’s a sense of satisifaction and relief that it has all worked out.
  2. It was a team effort: We’ve been working towards it as part of a team and so (hopefully) we’re in agreement with it all.
  3. Lovely new family: This is really nice! If a child is going to adoption it’s great to see them with their new and enthusiastic family. Still very emotional though.
  4. Time to play Happy Families: Quite often fostering seems to be about giving a child’s family a little time to get themselves sorted out, so it’s really nice to see them all as a happy family again.
  5. Oh look, here’s another one: It’s never very long until we’ve got a new little person to look after and take our mind off things. They’ll have their own personality and challenges and we’ll have to focus all our attention and energies on them.
  6. They’re not ours anyway: I hope it doesn’t sound too harsh, but they aren’t! We know when they arrive that they’ll be going again at some point, and in my case (I’ve got 3 boys of my own) it’s really not like giving away my own kids.

Well that’s how it seems to me anyway. I hope it’s not a reason for not fostering.

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