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.
“Girl, you better stop crying,” my grandmother said. I was young. Holding tears back was hard. My throat closed up and my head began to spin.
My grandmother was a warrior. She was my soldier. When I was little, everything she did was right in my eyes. I just couldn’t understand why I wasn’t supposed to cry.
In my grandma’s world there was no time for emotions. She raised four children and four grandchildren, and she worked … Read More
Over the past three years, Rise has worked with and interviewed more than 40 mothers who grew up in foster care. A common theme is our fear that if we reach out for assistance, our families will be hurt rather than helped.
Here, we asked three professionals—including a program director whose own children grew up in foster care—about approaches that have been proven to help families. Suzanne Barnard is the director of the Evidence-Based Practice Group … Read More
Being raised in foster care and my daughters ending up there used to seem like an unbreakable cycle. I had feelings of being stuck in the past. The abuse I encountered at home and in foster care left scars so deep. I suffer from them as I write this story.
Going into adulthood I prayed and promised myself that I wouldn’t continue the cycle. But the problems I wanted to run from consumed me. My first … Read More
For the most part, my childhood is a blur, but I remember being about 7 and my uncle feeling on my backside when I was asleep. That’s when my hell began. At the time, I lived with my uncle and my mom, who was deep into an addiction. My baby sister slept in her crib. I lay on my top bunk feeling scared and confused.
I first told my story when I was 14 and spent … Read More