Sunday, April 7, 2013

The boiling point...

So, let me preface this by saying- this post will mainly be me complaining about problems in the foster care system so you've been warned.

Long story short, my Saturday consisted of being beat up while driving a vehicle, police involvement, and spending 6 hours in the ER.

We have been seeing some drastic changes in behavior in T over the past month (threatening family members with weapons, $800 in property damage, and strange behaviors like growling and barking at strangers) and have been requesting help (through regular respite, in home therapy, and a behavior coach).  While I understand that social workers, GALs, and therapists are busy, continuing to get "we are working on it" as a response begins to get frustrating week after week. I wonder if these supports were put in place 2 months ago when we started asking, if we would be at the place we are now. 

We always expected being foster parents to high risk kids would be difficult for us, but we didn't really stop and think of how it affects them.

It feels really unfair to have a child scared to be in his home because of a sibling, having nightmares, and anxiety attacks at school. Home should be a safe place, a respite.

On the other hand, it is also unfair to expect a child exposed to extreme domestic violence to behave in a safe way. When all you've seen is violence, how are you supposed to react to anger, frustration, and fear? When you have been in residential and day treatment settings where when you get out of control someone controls your body for you (through restraints, safe rooms, etc.); how are you supposed to be able to control yourself (since foster parents are required to be hands off). I don't understand why I have the training to restrain kids safely in the public schools, but when it comes to my own home, I can't even truly defend myself or protect the other kids in my home by safely removing a child to a neutral place. 

We feel like we truly cannot help both of these kids without hurting one or the other and that's a really sucky place to be...

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