Posts Tagged: The Long Shadow of Foster Care

After Care — I wish my service plan had prepared me for reunification

After spending four years in foster care, my 7-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter were trial discharged to me in time for Christmas 2015.

The family shelter I was in with my 9-month-old baby wasn’t our idea of home, but my kids were happy just to be back with me and excited about their new brother.

It was the happiest day of our lives.

It was also the saddest, because a big part of our family was still missing—my oldest … Read More

I’m Rising – How I turned my anger at the system into a passion for changing it

The Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) got involved in my life in 2000 after I disciplined my son by spanking him with a belt. They said I was abusing him and took him away. I was also arrested.

Before the case, I was working in child care. Watching people’s children was fun for me. I enjoyed the little ones and how creative they are at those young ages. I was also in school studying criminal … Read More

‘What Did I Do That They Took Me From You?’ – My son’s time in care left him feeling like there was something wrong with him.

Illustration by YC

My son came home from two years in foster care a scared, angry and confused 6-year-old. I kept telling myself that his fear, anger and confusion would all go away when life was “normal” again, but life never really got normal for us.

Lies and Stealing

I had already successfully raised three children when my youngest son was born. But my son’s father died unexpectedly when I was pregnant with my son, and … Read More

‘A Child’s Whole Sense of Security Is Shaken’ – What families need when children come home from foster care

Illustration by Melanie Leong

Arietta Slade, City University of New York professor of clinical psychology and co-director of Minding the Baby, a mother-infant program at the Yale Child Study Center, describes the impact that removal can have on children and parents and the support they need to reconnect:

Q: How does placement in foster care affect children?

A: You want to think about it like this: We survive by being connected to other people. It’s the … Read More

Too Scared to Learn – My daughter had to deal with her foster care fears before she could focus in school.

Illustration by Kingslee Gourrick

My daughter had some very serious problems when she started first grade. Kindergarten wasn’t too smooth, either, so on the first day of school this year I was encouraging her, saying, “This year is a new year for you.” I had high hopes.

A Difficult First Day

I dressed my daughter in her uniform—yellow tights with a blue jumper and a long sleeved yellow shirt. But as we approached the school, my … Read More

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