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My kids not coping well(5 Posts)
Dh and I have been foster carers for 3 years and have had several placements in that time. We have 2 children of our own, ages 6 and 10. We began a new placement last week, 3 young children under 4. Our kids have never had any problems with our previous placements but they are really struggling with this one. There is no particular reason. the foster children are quite hyper, always on the go, fight a lot and I think my two are just finding it a bit overwhelming. I feel so bad that they feel like this. i'm reluctant to just end the placement but not sure how long I should give everyone to get used to each other. I also feel guilty as it was the first time i hadn't actually discussed the placement with them first, usually I chat to them before we agree to take children and it is a family desiciion but for the first time ever I didn't. I just feel awful, i always wanted fostering to be a positive experience for them and at the moment its the opposite. I just dont know what to do.
I think you need to sit down with your kids and find out what the problem is - before you do any thing else. It is so tough when the bond doesnt happen - how comes you didnt talk to your kids this time ?
I'm not in the least bit surprised that your children are feeling overwhelmed by this new placement - 3 hyeractive children under 4 who fight all the time! I agree you need to talk to your own children to see if there is anything specific that is getting to them, or is it just the sheer bedlam of 3 young children. I think you need to give it more than a week, but if this continues then I think you should talk to your ssw about moving 1 or 2 of the sibs to another placement. I'm not sure it was the right thing to do to place 3 in any event as all these children are going to be very needy and however hard you try, it is not going to be possible to meet all their needs. Additionally they are all in competition with each other, which is the root of all the fighting, so it's difficult to see how being placed together will help them.
Do you know what the care plan is for these children. Are the LA in care proceedings, or is this a S.20 placement where the children might be able to go home. I know that the vast majority of foster carers do their best, but your own children must come first.
Thanks so much for the replies. The reason I didn't speak to the kids about this placement was that we had been offered a similar placement about a fortnight ago which we had discussed with our own kids and they were very excited about it. However that placement never happened so when this one was offered I agreed based on the desicion we had made a couple of weeks ago. Tbh I think if I had discussed it with them they would have agreed because they loved the idea of having younger kids here but the reality of it is so different. I'll be talking to our sw today about the possibility of moving them, i have discussed it with both her and the childrens aunt already (they had been in care with her previous to us taking them and she had much the same difficulties as we are having) and both have said that the children will have to be split, their needs are just too complex and their behaviour is too challenging for it to work if they stay together. I feel so guilty about it on one hand but I can't subject my kids to this any longer. my dd was bitten, punched and kicked last night, while I was dealing with that one of the others was drawing all over the wall, its just endless chaos at the moment and we're all overwhelmed. Their aunt was here yesterday and said that she used to dread getting up in the morning and facing into a day of it and i'm not surprised tbh. They need to go to a home where there are either no children or the children have grown up and the carers can give them 100% of their time and attention. I hate ending placements but I don't want to put my children off fostering forever. They've had such a positive experience with it so far and built great relaationships with all the kids that have been here, they still see most of them occasionally which is great. Now they're saying they want a break after our older fd goes to college in sumer. I don't blame them and I don't want them to look back on fostering as a negative event in their lives when they are older, which I think will happen if this placement continues much longer. They're very open to the possibility of keeping one of the kids which is great, i suppose it'll be up to the sws what happens next. I just hope they consider the next match very carefully, these childrens lives have been disrupted so much, they don't need another placement breakdown. It looks like being a long term, possibly permenent placement so they really need to get the right carers.
It seems a lot to have 5 children, 3 of which are likely to need intensive support and care! Good luck. Would 1 fc not be enough in future?
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