We have been approved to be foster careers and I'm still really nervous about it all, and still wondering if I've done the right thing?? Did anyone else feel like that?
Can anyone give me any tips as to what you do/say if your foster child doesn't want to do something ie, get up out of bed to go to school or if you tell them they can't go out for whatever reason, and they tell you they are going out and there's nothing you can do to keep them in? I'm sure I must have been asked about this during the assessment, but I can't remember what I said, and for the life of me I can't seem to think what I would do or say????
I've constantly got butterflies in my tummy thinking about it all, but at the same time a bit excited??
They will probably be good at first, it is called the honeymoon period. They will be figuring you out. No, you can't make them do anything but there are rewards. it is really important to focus on the positive behaviour. A reward might be a day out or trip to cinema or some treat food like a dominoes pizza which they love or new trainers or going off with them on a bike ride, staying up late on the weekend etc. if need be you could ground them (IME for only half an hour or so, any more is cruel and they hate it) or say no play station for the evening. They also won't want to lose any of their pocket money or phone credit. If they don't do something like shower or go to bed on time you might decide not to make a battle out of it and whatever you do, don't get into a big row about something silly. Let us know how you get on.
Do you have children of your own BD - if so it's best to treat foster children in the same way you would your own. You have to make more allowances for foster children of course because they will almost always have suffered (to a greater or lesser extent) from some kind of abuse or neglect, and so have learned that adults aren't to be trusted.
Yes as Rosh says there is very often a honeymoon period, but not always. All children are different. It depends on what has happened to them before they are placed with you.
I think it's very normal to wonder if you have done the right thing because fostering (like so many other things in life) is something that you won't know how it feels until you actually take your first placement. I wonder if this worry is actually "feeding" the other things that you mention. You must have had experience of caring for children as you probably wouldn't have been approved if you hadn't, so I think you need when you do get your first placement the worry about whether you have done the right thing will dissolve as you will be too busy to wonder about that! Also I suspect your intuition will guide you as to how to care for a particular child.
I don't know what age range you are approve for and whether you have been approved for LA fostering or an IFA (Independent Fostering Agency) You may have quite a wait before your first placement, and some people naturally get fed up about this, as they are all prepared and wanting to start, and are jumping every time the phone rings!
Try to relax and stop asking yourself "what if this and what if that" because there aren't any "right" answers - most foster carers do a really good job with often very emotionally damaged children. You aren't Mrs Perfect who will always get it right, but you will I'm sure do your level best to help/guide/support a child placed with you, and no one can ask any more than that.
Thank you both of you for taking to time to reply.
I guess I'm just nervous because its all new to me. I remember feeling nervous when I had my own children. I'm sure it's just because its something new, different etc. Am I making any sense. I just want to do my best for these kids.
I will just try to relax when I get a placement, and go with the "flow" and see what happens.