This is the second in a serious for sons and daughters of foster carers, written by AFA. It may be that this is helpful for people who are thinking about fostering
Obviously, you will want to know as much as possible about who’s coming to stay before they turn up. Your parent/s should tell you as much as they can. Sometimes it is difficult, as a child or children may have to come and stay at very short notice, and there isn’t time for your family to find out everything they would want to. Remember, sometimes things don’t work out as planned, so some children may stay for longer or shorter times than you were told they might.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Having someone new come to stay with your family will probably mean lots of changes for you – some will be good, and some you may not be happy about it at first.
One of the biggest changes is that you will have to share not just your toys and/or belongings, but also your parent/s, family and possibly your friends. This can be difficult. Sometimes fostered children can demand a lot of attention, and this could leave you feeling a bit left out. If this is the case, speak to your mum or dad about it.
Don’t forget that just because your parent/s is spending a lot of time looking after another child, this doesn’t mean that they care about you any less.
The most obvious change is that you will need to share your home and some of your belongings. Sometimes, children may take your things without asking, or break them. This can be very frustrating, and it is understandable that this will make you angry. Sharing is part of fostering. You may want to ask your parents if you can have a cupboard with a lock where you can keep the things that you treasure the most.
There are bound to be certain rules in your home that will change. This is because, as foster carers, your parent/s has to follow certain rules set by AFA. There is normally a good reason for things changing, although it may not seem like it sometimes.
Ask your parent/s what rules will change before you start fostering, and ask them to explain anything you are unhappy about.