6 Foster Care Myths Debunked
MYTH: Children go into foster care because they did something wrong
FACT: Foster children have done nothing wrong; they enter foster care because they have experienced serious neglect, abuse, or maltreatment that makes their home environment unsafe.
MYTH: You don’t want to get too attached to foster children because they might return home
FACT: While it is true that the first goal is to have the children return home to their parents, children in foster care need you to get attached. Forming loving bonds with their parental figures is one of the most important things all children need in order to be able to form positive relationships in the future and foster parents play a key role in this.
MYTH: The parents of kids in foster care are bad people who do not care about their children and deserve to have them taken away
FACT: Though some children enter foster care because of severe physical or sexual abuse, neglect is the most common reason children are placed in care. Neglect is failing to meet basic needs. It encompasses a wide variety of things from leaving children unattended to inability to properly care for children because of substance abuse or mental illness to failure to provide food or basic necessities. Sometimes, despite their best efforts, parents are not able to provide the level of care necessary for children who have severe medical needs. Most parents whose children are in foster care love their children very much and want to do what it takes to have their children return home. Sometimes all they need are some additional services to help them out of poverty, treat their substance abuse or mental illness, or equip them to properly care for their children.
MYTH: Foster kids are too damaged and have too many problems
FACT: All kids in foster care have experienced trauma on some level, which can cause behavior problems, but they are not beyond hope. Having a loving, stable family can help foster children overcome their hardships and flourish. Some may need intensive therapy or medical intervention, but children can recover from trauma and being part of a supportive family will accelerate their process.
MYTH: Foster parents don’t get any support from foster agencies
FACT: Foster agencies support foster parents; it is one of our most important jobs. At Intercept Treatment Foster Care, we believe that providing our foster parents with the best possible support is the most effective way to help you have a lasting, positive impact on your foster children. We have a team of caring professionals dedicated to helping our foster families thrive. Our foster parents have ongoing support and training and your family consultant is available 24/7 for questions and concerns.
MYTH: Foster parents don’t have any say in what children are placed in their homes
FACT: We want you to succeed as a foster parent and will work with you to make sure the your family is a good fit for every child placed with you based on your strengths and desires. You can express your preferences about things like age range and number of children you desire to foster. You will also discuss the types of special needs children may have and which needs your family would be well equipped to handle.