Thursday, July 31, 2014

Foster Care

 I've heard a lot recently about the foster care system and how some kids are better off being taken away from their parents if the parents are doing drugs, can't care for them ect. But I can tell you from experience that that's not always the case.

When I was 17 years old my mom ended up serving time in prison for child endangerment, child abuse and possession of cocaine. My brother and I ended up in foster care. He was only in foster care for about a month before he went to live with our dad. I knew my dad and step mother were using drugs and drinking and that he was very abusive so I told the judge I didn't want to go with him so I lived in a foster home for 6 months when I was 17 years old. My foster mother didn't like having someone as old as me and she let me know it every chance she got. My foster mother locked all of us in our rooms at night at 8pm and didn't let us out until 8am the next morning. We had a bucket in the room that we used for a bathroom and we had to empty it in the morning. She said she locked us in because some of us weren't allowed to go outside or have unsupervised phone conversations. I told my social worker and she said it was fine for her to do.

Before we were allowed to eat oatmeal in the morning we had to finish our chores which usually took an hour. The other 6 girls in the foster home with me were all really young, all under the age of 11. There were two sisters that got there the same time I did, one was 11 and one was 5 years old. Their parents had died in a car crash and their social worker was looking for another other family members to come take them. But they were there the entire 6 months I was.

The 5 year old would cry for her parents all the time and "linda" my foster mother would lock this poor girl in the bedroom until she stopped crying. Again, I told my social worker and she said it was fine. The last time I went to court, I was taken into the judges chambers and told that I couldn't go back to my foster parents home because my foster mother called the court and told them that I had set fire to her family bible that had been sitting on the living room table right before I left.

Now I will tell you right now that I did no such thing. She was just sick of me being there and questioning her methods and reporting her to my social worker. So I ended up going home with my dad. My dad and step mother spent all of their money on drugs so all we had to eat for over a month were potatoes but because they didn't pay the power bill we couldn't cook them on the electric stove, my brother and I had to take our potatoes out to the gas grill in the pool courtyard of our apartment complex and bbq them. We did this everyday for over a month. When my mom got out of prison we went to live with her. Thankfully she was no longer doing drugs at that point.

My dad and step mother no longer drink or do drugs and they don't even remember most of the things they did when they were high.

So I have a slanted view on foster care and foster homes.