Statistically, I am supposed to be dead, in jail, or homeless. At 14, I'd been kicked out of so many foster homes that it became a game to me. I acted out because I didn't trust anyone, and I didn't expect that to change any time soon. So, how come I didn't end up as yet another statistic? ONE. CARING. ADULT.
In New York City, over 150,000 children under five are poor. Last year, nearly 20,000 of these children slept in homeless shelters - enough to fill Madison Square Garden. From the moment they're born, children in poverty face an uphill struggle to survive, thrive and learn with so many odds stacked against them.
For older kids who have experienced much loss, those losses and abandonment issues will surface at holidays, on anniversaries, and at other times when we least expect it. Marker events bring out an old sadness and it gets mixed up in our current family life, and masked sadness often surfaces as anger.
As the election year progresses, many candidates in both parties and at every level will say it. Child-welfare professionals work mightily to make it a reality. Our country's laws and policies are intended to promote its essential truth: Every child deserves to grow up in a safe, permanent and loving family.
The poster is simple; Superman on the left, Batman on the right, about to do battle. The title reads; "Orphan Fight." No big deal to you. Not that big of a deal to me either. But I run the nation's only monthly foster care magazine and let's just say folks are less than pleased with this particular meme.
In no way, and in no fashion am I a saint, and I believe that foster parents from all over would echo that sentiment. We are not saints. We become tired, worn down, and exhausted. We have our own frustrations and disappointments. There are times when we succeed, and there are times when we experience failures.
When including him into your routine, start off slow. If you give him too much to do, it can quickly become overwhelming to him, and even turn him off to your family. Indeed, it is important that you are patient with him, and allow him time to adjust to the fact that he is not with his biological family.
As a parent of over 50 children the past 18 years, through adoption, foster care, and my own biological children, each day is pretty busy for my wife and I. Visitations for my children from foster care with upset birth parents, untold amounts of doctor visits with sick children, homework, bath time, laundry for up to 11 kids at one time, and of course 75,982 diapers changed in 18 years (my best estimate!)