Posted by: Jeannie | February 4, 2009

The latest news…

So far, we’ve watched a couple short videos in each PRIDE training session and also have short descriptions read of different types of abuse situations that children have possibly had to endure before they entered the foster care system. In all but the first training session, we’ve taken time to discuss them as a group. I’ve struggled with these in a couple different ways. They tend to both stir up memories of abuse that I endured as a child and, as I get to listen to the others who share their thoughts on them, I struggle with feeling so different from the rest of the group.

There’s only one other woman in the group that’s made it known that she came from an abusive background as well; she was adopted out of the system herself. So many of the others have expressed disbelief that people could actually treat children in some of the ways that are acted out in the video scenes and most of the time I’m sitting there feeling what I had thought was numb and not normal because it seemed so opposite the response of what almost everybody else seemed to be having. It bugs me. I’ve been thinking about it and I guess it’s not really numbness as it is having lived through it first-hand versus someone who grew up in a loving, nurturing home life that probably definitely wanted the kids that lived there. I guess things aren’t as shocking to me on a TV screen after having lived it in 3-D every day for the first 28 years of my life.

The training sessions are required to help us in learning more about how to work with and handle children who have been traumatized by abuse but they also seem to be having the extra benefit of understanding different ways that I used to be in my own reactions and behaviors as I was growing up and even a little as an adult. It’s really the first time for me in a number of areas that I’m finally understanding some of the reasons why I turned out the way that I did and why I had so many obstacles to overcome in the last several years. Both sessions three and four are on meeting developmental needs; last Monday’s was on attachments and tomorrow night’s (Thursday’s) is going to be in how losses affect that.

I learned something new while meeting with my worker at the HUD office earlier this week. She also has gone through the process for foster care and adoption and let me know that actually you can go ahead and have a child placed with you even though you’re living in a one-bedroom apartment. The only problem is I have to be willing to sleep in the living room and give the bedroom to the child since one of the requirements is for the child to have their own space and privacy; apparantly, it’s not required for the adult caring for the child to have it though. Hummmmm… it has me wondering. Once I have a child placed with me then I can qualify for a two-bedroom voucher so it wouldn’t be a long term situation so maybe it could actually be tolerable for a little while; it’s going to take a lot of thinking on how I’m going to be able to rearrange so much stuff though. I really wish this apartment came with some storage space đŸ™‚

One short, final note: I had my physical yesterday and that went really well. The only special note he made on it was for children two years of age and older ONLY. But I already was expecting that. Outside of going back Friday to have the TB Tine test checked, and possibly a chest x-ray since I’ve been known to come back with “false positives” on that, my physical is complete. That’s one more part of the homestudy process that I can check off the list!


Responses

  1. Jeannie- a little advice from someone who has “been there”… even though they CAN place a child with you while you are in a 1 br waiting for the 2 br, I suggest you do not. First, the child will take longer to feel “at home” if you are going to move into the 2 br after they come into the home. They will be uprooted twice instead of once. Second, the child will notice that you are not in your own bedroom and if they are over the age of 4 or 5, this can leave them unsettled. You are not going to provide them a perfect home, no home is perfect, but you want to provide them with as much routine and stability as you can so they have less attachment issues and trust issues.

    Just a few things to think about. I know you want it to happen yesterday, but remember, in HIS time. Easy for me to say as I tuck in my adopted son, huh?

    • The problem is HUD is saying they won’t allow a two-bedroom voucher without having the child first. It’s their way of guaranteeing that they aren’t paying for more bedrooms than there are people currently needing them. She said they do the same thing with even women who get pregnant, because there’s always the chance that they could lose the baby and then will have more bedrooms than they ended up needing. It’s the state department and I feel like I’m in between a rock and a hard place, so to speak.

  2. I love hearing about what is going on in your journey! Know that I am praying for you!

  3. Hey, I met you on Facebook today… I live in a VERY small guesthouse on my parents property, it has one bedroom and one bathroom. My 4 yr old Bio Daughter and I share the room and I got licenced for a infant Birth-12 months.. and I have a full size crib in the garage if I need it, but my licencer and placement coord. said its fine to use a pack-n-play crib as long as its for a small baby ( which saves on space ) but if its for a toddler I have to set up the full size crib.. anyways I am in the same boat as far as cramped space.. but in class, we heard of the state putting bunk beds in peoples living room to place more kids with them… so when it comes down to it, there pretty lax on those issues…


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