I just posted a new article to LinkedIn on walking through life with your foster teens. Please like, share, and comment! Here’s a snippet:
One of the most rewarding but challenging things about being a foster parent is walking through life with your teens—sometimes through the mud—as they charge headlong into adulthood. So many of the kids who have been in our home over the years, including their birth family, have become embedded in our family’s lives and hearts.
Some connected easily, and some took a lot of intentional effort to form any connection at all. Some have healed from the traumas of their childhood better than others. Some still carry a lot of that baggage, and that’s understandable. With some, we thought maybe we had failed at maintaining those all-important lifetime connections, until they came back later to resume the relationship as an adult. Every relationship is starkly different.
We try to communicate clearly to kids coming into our home that they are loved, and that we want to be there for them for the rest of their life. We don’t leave that unsaid. We come right out and say it, and most “get it” pretty quickly. Some don’t. Some are still learning to trust adults, and won’t believe the words “I love you” for many years to come.
Kevin Harper is the author of the upcoming book Foster Parenting Teens. He’s also a foster parent trainer, speaker, and mentor. One of his daughters has written a fantastic novel about a girl who grew up in foster care, and he’s shamelessly asking you to buy this book on Amazon today. It’s called More To Me, by Saty Cornelius.