Foster Families Face Unique Issues That Many Biological Families Don’t Encounter (Pt 1)

A young boy walking outside, holding his father's hand. They are facing away from the camera.
Parenting is hard, no matter your situation, but foster families face certain unique challenges that are unlike anything a bio family has to deal with.

For most biological parents who are only raising their own kids, they decide what they want their children’s lives to look like, and they base their rules and family policies on that projection. “Only organic food”, “an emphasis on education”, “must speak a second language” or “limits on screen time” are good examples. You get it – parents want to offer their kids good opportunities. Sometimes they work out, and sometimes they don’t. But the challenges faced by the average biological family vary quite significantly from the challenges foster families face. Let’s take a look.

Foster kids are more likely to have behavioral problems

Some kids face behavioral and emotional disorders, or even more extreme mental health problems that require more from their parents. This is true of kids all over the world, regardless of who is raising them. But kids in the foster system have a higher chance of having suffered trauma from abuse, neglect, violence, and a host of other tragedies. Which means they’re more prone to have higher medical needs, along with all the other side effects of trauma.

Children who have experienced abuse and neglect are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety, have higher instances of suicidal ideations, and tend to present with more behavioral disorders. This may mean they’re more likely to act up, throw violent fits, attempt to harm other children, get into fights at school, and experiment with drugs. Obviously, any kid can struggle with these challenges, but foster kids see a much higher percentage chance due to their history of trauma, making it considerably more challenging for their foster families.

Kids in the system may not have complete medical histories

When the average parent takes their kid to the doctor and gets stuck filling out the mountains of paperwork, they usually have all the answers on hand about their child’s medical history. Prior surgeries, possible allergies, medical diagnoses, and family medical history. But when the child you’re talking to the doctor is a child you’ve only known for a short time, you may not know much about their medical history.

In many cases, when CPS steps in and takes a child away from their family, they don’t stop to find out the details about that child. So whoever ends up caring for them in the months, and sometimes years that follow that removal, the gaping holes in their medical history make providing complete medical and psychiatric care to that child very challenging. Foster parents have to do the best they can with very little available information, and an incomplete understanding of that child’s family medical history. 

Foster care is important, but keeping families together is best.

There are definitely times when a child needs protection from an unsafe home, or from a predatory or violent person they can’t protect themselves from. Which is why foster families are so important. But there are just as many situations where children are taken from innocent parents for no good reason, and the trauma of that separation does more damage than any possible abuse. If CPS has tried to take your children, or you’ve been accused of child abuse, call 866 766 5245 immediately, and let the skilled CPS defense attorneys at The Kronzek Firm help you fight for your parental rights!

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