What You Need To Become A Foster Parent

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by on September 10, 2010

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5 Traits for Successful Foster Care

Foster Care is an extremely demanding, yet personally rewarding career and even lifestyle. There is much more to being a foster parent though than you may initially think, it does require somebody with an extrmley strong character.

If you are thinking of Foster Caring, then ask yourself, have you got these five traits?

Patience

You may find that you continually have to give and very rarely get anything in return emotionally from your Foster Child (or children) apart from knowing that you are helping a child and their family. Have you got the patience and willingness to do that?

Realistic Expectations

Unfortunately those children that you will care for are fairly likely to have been the victims of all kinds of abuse or may even resent the fact that they are now in your home. Many people get into Foster Care thinking that every child that walks through their doors will be instantly grateful – this is very rarely the case.

Commitment

Following on from the realistic expectation requirement, can you truly say that you will be 100% committed to your new role? It may not always be the child that is taking up a huge portion of your day, during certain times during the child stay, the fostering agency may request that they visit your home on a regular basis, or require that you are in constant communication with them – you may not get much, or any free time for yourself.

An Ability To Say Goodbye

Fostering is in no way a permanent arrangement and the reality of the situation is that the children in your care will have to move on someday. You may not think you will, but the chances are that you will grow do be somewhat attached to the child, which can make saying goodbye difficult.

In some cases it may be possible for you to keep some form of relationship with the child (depending on the parents wishes) after they have left your care, but its not a frequent occurrence.

A Lot of Love To Give

If you didn’t have a lot of love to give, it’s fairly unlikely that you would have considered becoming a foster carer at all. But how much love do you think you have? Are you fully prepared to go all out and do the best you can for the child?

Supportive Friends & Family

Not a trait, but also important! Fostering can be an extremely stressful at times which will leave you longing for a kind ear to listen to you vent your frustrations. You will need the support of your family and friends at times, so if you haven’t got a support network at hand, you may struggle. Many fostering agencies tend to hold support groups, so enquire about those as well.

So if you have all of the traits and feel as though you can be supported, contact your local fostering agency and take it from there!

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  5. Which Parenting Style is Right for You?

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