What it Means to be a Foster Parent
By Darlene Brown
What does Foster Parenting Mean to Me?
- Foster parenting means getting a call at 2 a.m. to accept children into our home, climbing out of bed and throwing on sweats to ready a room before the children arrive.
- Foster parenting means witnessing hurt and pain beyond belief as a child opens up and tells you of their past trauma.
- Foster parenting means constant juggling of medical, dental, therapist and specialist appointments in addition to meetings and court dates.
- Foster parenting means sleepless nights to comfort a scared child who wakens with night terrors, wet beds or other "accidents" and then trudging off to work the next morning with just a tad bit more make up on to camouflage the bags from the sleepless night.
We asked Tennessee Foster Parents why they became foster parents. Here is what some of them said.
Why Do You Foster?
Foster a Teen
Many inquiries to the Department of Children’s Services are from citizens who would like to become foster or adoptive parents to babies or young children. But, teen-agers, ages 13 to 19, make up 43% of the caseload and child welfare agencies – public and private – are in need to families willing to work specifically with teen-agers.
Celebration of Excellence 2016
Foster Parenting: Loving and Letting Go
Seven years ago, a toddler Julie and Shawn Burdge cared for as foster parents was reunified with her mother.
It was, Julie Burdge says, one of lowest days of her life.
But today, “this little girl knows she has two mothers who love her and I give her mother a huge amount of credit for understanding it is OK for two women to love her child.”