Saturday, March 28, 2009

Birth mothers need to visit their children . . .CPS has this one right!

Based on my experiences in the foster care system, I often do not agree with CPS, and how they are choosing to handle a case, but I have one to three foster children to love and care for and a social worker may have up to 60 on their case load. And the social workers are also tied by the law, the court, the lawyer, the judge, and their supervisor.

Most birth parents will tell you the system stole their child and doesn't want to give it back, they are wrong.

In many cases, DCFS is trying to give the children back to their parents, but the parents will not do one simple thing that the court wants them to do - visit their child.

I used to think they were making it too easy on these parents. What?! The parent uses drugs, abuses their child, neglects them for months, and finally the child is taken away in order to keep them safe and sometimes to feed them since in extreme neglect cases the children aren't being fed.

And the judge says visit your child. Regularly. Now I have realized how important that is.
  • keep the mother child bond if there was one
  • establish a bond if there wasn't one
  • show that they are responsible enough to keep a regular appointment
  • show that they love their child so much that you can't stand to be away from them and they are the most important thing to you in the world
So now, I understand the importance of the visit. Sure, drug test, take your parenting classes, attend AA meetings, and get a suitable place to live.

But most importantly, visit your child. When the birth mother of my foster son can only make about half her visits, and has never been on time for the last six months, how could she have handled J's chronic ear infections resulting in two ruptured eardrums and six doctors visits in 3 weeks?

Sorry, now I am rambling. But if she wants her son, how can she not want to see him.? And believe me, she makes the choice not to come. She doesn't call to apologize or make excuses for herself. She just doesn't come.

My nineteen year old son went camping this weekend for the first time. I miss him. He is nineteen, so I won't jump in the car and track him down. I won't call him repeatedly on his cell phone - well, I may have, but he said there is no cell service.

Baby J's mom sometimes goes weeks without making a visit, but legally she gets until June. No, her child wasn't "legally kidnapped" as one blog wants us to believe. He was taken for his safety and his mom can see him if she chooses. She can have him returned if she chooses.

It is in her hands.

"Each day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children."
Charles R. Swindoll


Leslie said...

I couldn't agree more. I work in a foster care group home, and too often in the files under parents infomation it says "location unknown". How does a mother get lost? We also have kids whose parents could visit/call them IF they chose, and like you said, they simply don't.

Anonymous said...

That was very nicely said. I too am a Foster Mom and its frustrating when the kids act out after seeing their parents, but I know it's worth it.