When you grow up in foster care and become a mother, your greatest hope is that you’ll get to be your child’s Mommy. Yet parents who grew up in foster care are at high risk of having their own children removed. Rise’s “My Story, My Life” writing workshops are for young mothers who grew up in care. Stories here describe the painful relationship between child welfare systems and the mothers they helped raise — and what it takes to keep children safe at home.
In my family, chemical dependency and physical abuse were the tools we used to survive. That way of coping has been going strong in my family for decades. The result for my siblings and me was that we were removed and placed in foster care twice—first when I was 5 years old, and then for good when I was 8.
I grew up in the system with a powerful force inside of me: a burning desire … Read More
It seems like I’ve been afraid of child protective services all of my life.
Growing up in the projects, we called CPS the “Parent Police,” and it was normal for the girls I knew to lose custody of their children because they were smoking weed, drinking or hanging out late. Many of my friends still don’t have custody of their children.
I grew up in foster care, and I lost my own son, … Read More
I lost my kids 6 years ago. On April 8th 2008 I went to court for a removal of the kids. My kids were 7, 6 and 2. That was basically the worst day of my life.
When I first had my kids I was living with my mother. Then, when my youngest was born, I went to the shelter with her father. We got an apartment together. But then he went to jail.
It was hard … Read More
I came to court that morning with my heart and my mind racing in time with one another. I was handcuffed as we traveled from the bowels of Bronx criminal court, arriving at a phone booth-sized room where I was told to wait for my lawyer.
It was the day for me to sign those papers. My son, Justin, was 8 then. For the first three years of his life, Justin had slept in my bed, … Read More
I met my child’s mother when I was 21 and she was 22. After I got the courage to ask her out, we caught that instant connection. I had grown up in foster care, and she had come from drama, so we understood each other. Our relationship lasted for over four years and for a long time it was good.
In the last year, she became pregnant and we had a daughter. I really thought it … Read More