Mental Health

Parents with mental illness are far more likely than other parents to lose their children to foster care. Children with mental illness or behavioral problems also are more likely to enter foster care, either to receive intensive services or because of family stress. Fear and shame can keep parents from reaching out for help. Effective services can also be very hard to find. Stories here explore parents’ experiences finding support for themselves and their children.

A Time to Bond – How to make the most of your visits

Jacqueline Israel, a former parent advocate whose children spent six years in foster care, explains how to make the most of your visits:

1. Bring Toys and Games

When you visit at the agency, the room just isn’t a home environment. I suggest that parents bring games, coloring books, activity books, crayons. Play some soft music, and bring books to read to your child. You can even bring your own visiting blanket so you and your … Read More

Child Left Behind – My son fell apart in a stressful school environment

It was homework time in my house one evening last fall. I called my son into the living room. He stormed in demanding popcorn. I told him, “No, not until you do your homework.” Why did I say that? He began screaming that he hated me. He had started telling me he hated me every time things didn’t go his way.

For months, homework had been a daily conflict. This time, I … Read More

Mission Impossible – CPS is helping to reconnect my son and me even though I lost my rights

Three years ago, my son was removed from my home because he had serious behavioral problems and I had become too sick and exhausted to care for him.

I raised my son on my own until he was 9 years old. For five years, he was in and out of psychiatric hospitals because of his impulsive, destructive behavior. He was diagnosed with ADHD and bipolar disorder.

I found services to support my … Read More