Determining if You are Ready to be a Foster Parent
Is Foster Parenting a Good Fit for You?
There are some questions you should ask yourself before taking the next step to be a foster parent
- Can I love and care for a child who comes from a different background?
- Can I help a child develop a sense of belonging in my home even though the stay is temporary?
- Can I love and care for a child who, because of fear of rejection and loss, does not easily love me back?
- Am I secure enough in my parenting skills while at the same time being willing to learn new parenting skills?
- Can I set clear limits, and be both firm and understanding in my discipline?
- Do I view bed-wetting, lying, defiance, and minor destructiveness as symptoms of a child in need?
- Can I tolerate major failures and small successes?
- Can I accept assistance and guidance from trained social workers?
- Can I maintain a positive attitude toward a child's parents, even though many of the problems the child is experiencing are a direct result of the parent's actions?
- Can I love this child with all my heart and let him go when it is time?
What are the Characteristics of a Successful Foster Family?
Financial assistance for room, board, clothing and related expenses
All medical and dental care through Medicaid or other sources
Ongoing training and supportive services
Commitment, patience, understanding, flexibility, good communication, open to feedback and direction, ability to ask for help when needed, ability to set clear boundaries and limits, ability not to personalize a child's behavior, sense of humor, ability to work as part of a team with the child's social worker, counselor or others.
Support for Foster Parents
Little Known Facts About Foster Parenting
Single individuals as well as married couples can become foster parents
There are national organizations that provide training, support and advocacy for foster parents
Foster parents have a right to attend court hearings on their foster child
Foster parents are part of the child's professional care team