18 Mar Foster Homes – (Part 2)
Contd from last week…
Foster Parents’ perspective
Over the years the need of fosters homes has considerably increased. I guess the demand of such homes is directly proportional to the increase in crimes and the prisons getting flooded with criminals (small and big time). Why? Simply, because someone needs to take care of the children of those people who are serving punishment or just awaiting trial. (Here, I’m not including the cases where parents die due to some fatal disease or an accident) Recently I came across an article on the internet which seemed to have been written by a foster parent. The woman expressed her annoyance towards the social services department which sent representatives to her house, unannounced, once every week. She felt that the foster parents’ are subjected to undue inconvenience as they have to make themselves available 24/7 and cannot ask the department to give them a prior notice. Quoting her:
“After all I too need some rest. With 3 of my own kids and 2 foster children, I get drained out physically and want to take some rest during daytime by putting a ‘do not disturb’ sign board outside the door. It seems I can never be that lucky. We are supposed to be ‘super parents’. Why can’t we be normal parents even to our foster kids? I mean, are we supposed to keep them dressed up all the time? Sometimes they would also love to loiter in their pajamas for the whole day? Why do the social workers make such a big deal out of it? The department does not seem to understand that some kids come with such grave psychological problems that it’s almost impossible to deal with them. I had such issues with one kid. She would deliberately try to drive me nuts. All she loved to do was to disobey me and do the opposite of what I asked her to do. I almost felt like blowing off my top but then I had to set an example for the other kids too.”
I understood her point of view too but then it wasn’t hard to give some leverage to those social workers also who try their best to ensure the well being of such kids. A dilemma indeed! The whole situation makes me wonder if there can be a via media. Can we balance it out somehow? Will it make the situation any better if there are more adoptive parents rather than foster parents? I invite a healthy discussion here. Who knows we might be able to make some amendments in law….if we join forces.