Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on fostering.
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Can I ask for experiences with fostering?(6 Posts)
I am rattling around in a 4 bedroomed house on my own as my son has recently left home. I have always been interested in fostering but I’m always put off by horror stories. I can provide a good home, I have money, a big house and I’m a registered nurse. It’s just me and the dog here and it all feels a bit wasted.
So can you tell me the good and bad of fostering?
When i first started to research I was really worried about the sort of horror stories that you are referring to but I carried on making enquiries and to cut a long story short have been fostering for 2 and a half years during which time my wife and I have fostered 10 childre. Two sibling groups of 3 for six months each (while assessments were being undertaken - on both occasions returning to parents). We then had a break of a few months and now have 4 siblings which we anticipate having long term. OUr overall experience has been very positive. Obviously there have been some difficult periods but we had difficult periods when we had our own (5) children. It has been great to keep siblings together as often when you see the referral forms it will say "we would like to keep all together but if not x will be separated from his two siblings". Having then taken all 3 it was obvious that x would not have coped at all being separated. Our current 4 siblings had already been told they were being split up when we emerged. The tem kids we have had have all been great kids. Yes there are some really difficult children out there but you get the final say of who you look after. Its very important that you go with a provider that lets you see the full referral sheets. Many do not. Avoid them because they are keeping information back that you need to know.
Whereabouts in the country are you ?
As a nurse would you consider fostering a child with complex medical needs? We have fostered 2 babies straight from specialist hospitals at around 1 year. Children with needs such as tracheostomy, TPN feeding or long term ventilation will always find it harder to find stable placements. The flip-side is that neither child had any challenging behaviour at all and were an absolute pleasure 😊
We look after children mainly new born with similar conditions, untill they are well enough to be placed too , BP's ,adoption, long term care. So far after many year's doing this , all has been a 100% success., also very rewarding seeing so many children placed who otherwise their future's would be questionable without very early interventions and the thanks too many many adoptive parents who provided them a secure and loving home.
Firstly with regards to the horror stories, it is important for you to know that you are told about a child before you accept the placement. The level of need varies incredibly and when you are told about a child's history, it is fairly apparent what you are getting involved in.
The worse the upbringing a child has had, normally the harder it is, but equally the more rewarding it is when you make progress helping that child.
The pros of fostering is you get to change a childs life for the better, the cons are it can be a difficult road. You live every moment with them, every realisation, happy and sad moment. Everything they have been through you will eventually hear and see in their eyes what it has done to them. However you never give up on them and one day at a time you fix one more thing for them, until they eventually become happy children with their problems behind them.
It is absolutely worth doing.
I would 100% go for it!!! My very 1st placement nearly didn't happen because they needed an experienced foster carer because of family implications. I ended up with the placement and had a brilliant relationship with all family members. I have had 5 children over 2 years and they have all been amazing. Like others say you have a choice after hearing their history. Good luck
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