I never knew a single kid who ever wanted to be in foster care. No kid is proud to be born into a broken home. Then you add foster care on top of trauma, which creates a litany of other problems such as: exposure of family secrets, a separation of siblings, lack of certainty or stability, disruptive family interruptions, spotty educational records, and a village of workers who don’t communicate with each other....more
I was eight years old when I spent one humid summer in Alabama, where I visited my great aunt Nell, her grown children and their squirrelly grandchildren. It was there I discovered salty boiled peanuts, pesky fire ants, roaring racetracks, and a lush foliage cemetery devoted to my family....more
Earlier this year, Starbucks Corp. CEO Howard Schultz pulled the plug on his company’s in-store initiative that encouraged baristas to write “Race Together” on cups and talk about race relations with their customers....more
I didn’t know anything about foster care before I reluctantly entered it at the age of fourteen. I was a typical teenager who never thought about what happened to kids if they didn’t live with their parents. My parents weren’t perfect, but they were always there for me until drugs came into our lives.I was thirteen when my mother and stepfather started using and dealing, then shortly after, I started to use drugs too. It was during this time, under the influence, that my stepfather started sexually abusing me. This abuse led me to overdose on cocaine....more
Today has been marked on my calendar for weeks. A simple star in the corner, nothing you’d notice if you weren’t looking for it, but something I’ve stared at for days, something that represents a lot of nervous stomachs and sleepless nights and days spent dreaming of the future. Today was the day we found out if we were selected to adopt a little boy we’d been matched with. And today, just hours ago, we found out that another family was chosen instead. ...more
Now that my husband has started his career, it is time for us to start on our next journey. My husband and I have wanted kids for a LONG time. I have battled with my infertility ever since we tied the knot. In the last three years I have really accepted the fact of not being able to give birth to my own biological babies, so we have been preparing our heart for foster care.
On the phone at work today, I found myself stuck on hold for nearly half an hour with a social service agency in a county about 300 miles away. What surprised me was the recorded message that played over and over. Actually, it was quite cleverly done. But what I heard sent a chill up my spine.The recording consisted of the voices of children, both girls and boys, of various ages, many of them extremely young. One by one, they told their stories in a single sentence each:“I am not a punching bag.”“I need a place to call home.”...more
Over the past few years, the following things have been offered to us as possible "causes" for the behavioral problems we have experienced with our seven-year-old son, Harper. Most of the time the suggestions have been made in love, purely out of concern. Occasionally they have been "casually" dropped into a conversation in correction or judgement. Some are shoved down our throats via Facebook articles and blogs.