Vol. 13, No. 2 • May 2009

Advice to Foster Parents from an Adult Who Was Once in Foster Care

Today I am 31 years of age, but I was once in foster care. Here is my advice for foster parents and anyone else who works with children in foster care:

The foster parent needs to somehow let the children know that they are loved, and wants to understand what they are feeling. The kids have been hurt emotionally and need to know that it is OK to have those feelings of hurt.

The foster parent needs to listen to the children. Do not judge them or show pity, but show them you are genuine and are there for them no matter what.

It is weird. The kids have to give respect, but at this point their foster parents have to earn the kids’ respect as well. Adults have let the children down, so the kids don’t understand or know how to trust or whom to trust. —T.R..

Copyright 2009 Jordan Institute for Families