Have you ever wondered if you’d be able to cut it as a foster parent? Many of us do before getting started. I know I did. I still question it some days. The truth is that there is no one perfect foster parent. We need diverse foster families just as there are diverse children coming into care. As long as you meet the basic requirements of your state, the most important question you can ask is “can I offer a child or youth a loving and safe home for the time they need me?“
Some other factors that help families thrive in fostering:
- Positive attitude and fun-loving nature
- Ability to be flexible and make adjustments
- Patience, empathy, and good listening skills
- Stable support system and/or ability to make connections
- Open-mindedness, perseverance when things are challenging
There is not a template for a perfect foster family. Great foster parents are young, old, and in between. They can be single, dating, or married. They may have kids in the home, have grown kids that live outside the home, or they may not have any previous parenting experience. They come from all backgrounds and have diverse experiences.
Foster care isn’t something to rush into, for sure. But perhaps, knowing you’re not alone in your doubts and questions can help you see if this really is an option for you. You can always ask yourself these questions to assess your readiness to jump in. Don’t forget that you don’t have to do this alone! We are always better together. Talk to a foster parent you already know (most of us love talking about fostering), attend an orientation session with a local foster care licensing agency, find online groups like Care2Foster to join, read as much as you can.
Our Care2Foster staff would love to talk with you more about your interest in fostering – at whatever stage you’re at right now. We’re here to answer your questions with no pressure to take next steps, no judgement, ever! Call us at (864) 202-6839 or email [email protected]. We’re here to help at every step of the way. You’re never alone on this journey!