Foster/Foster-Adopt

5 Tips for Making a New Foster Child Feel Welcome in Your Home

Here are some tips for welcoming a new foster or adoptive child into your home from foster-adopt expert Trey Rabun

Welcoming a child into your home though foster care or adoption can be exciting, but it's also a challenging, time. However, there are several things you can do to help make the transition smoother for the new child and your family. Check out these tips from Trey Rabun, Amara's Family Outreach Specialist and a Gays With Kids' Expert on foster-adopt.


1. Plan a Transition

If applicable, have a gradual transition from the child's current placement to your home. Start with day visits, increase to overnight visits, and then move the child permanently into your home. The hope is to transfer the attachment/bond from the current caregiver to the new one. Having a transition also allows for contact with the pervious caregiver which gets you access to valuable information about the child's likes and dislikes, their sleep and feeding schedule, and toiletries (soap, lotion, etc.) used so you recreate the same smells and scents in your home. The goal is to create a similar routine and schedule in your home to minimize the level of change being experienced by the child.

2. Be Flexible

Your family will be going through a lot of change in the first few days, weeks, and months so it's natural that things won't always go to plan…and that's o.k.! In the first few days keep things simple and set rules only around respect and safety, and overtime slowly add more expectations around the child's behaviors and rules in the home. Remember everything to the child is "new" and it will take some time for them to start feeling comfortable and secure in your home.

3. Be Open to Learning

Most foster and adopted children have experienced some level of trauma. This often requires new ways of thinking about parenting and discipline. For example, the traditional parenting method of Time-Outs can often exacerbate feelings of rejection and abandonment in vulnerable children. However, Time-Ins are a great alternative to use when dealing with undesirable behaviors.

4. Take Into Account a Child's Thoughts and Opinions

For older children, letting them have some ownership in the move is a good way to help minimize the stress of a transition. The extent of the child's involvement will range depending on their age, but for an elementary aged child you can, for example, take them to the store and allow them to pick out their new sheets and blankets with their favorite cartoon character. You can also ask what their favorite foods are and have them stocked up on the child's first day in the home. For a teenager, have frequent check-ins around how they are feeling and make changes to the transition plan (either slow down or speed up) based on their comfort with the pace of the transition.

5. Create a Support Network

Becoming a foster or adoptive parent has its unique joys and challenges, and talking to other families going through the same experiences can be a great resource. Join the support group at your agency or create a parenting group in your neighborhood for other foster and adoptive families. Your friends and families will be a wonderful support system too, but being in a room of other parents who share the same feelings of joy, excitement, angst, and frustration will be invaluable!

For more information please access websites below:

https://cherish.kindering.org/resources/

https://adoption.com/welcoming-your-new-foster-child

http://www.fccy.org/blog/foster-care-pa/ways-to-make-foster-kids-feel-welcome-in-a-new-home-part-1/

https://www.dcp.wa.gov.au/ChildProtection/ChildAbuseAndNeglect/Documents/ChildDevelopmentAndTraumaGuide.pdf

http://www.pcafamilies.org.au/uploaded-files/Time-in-versus-Time-Out-FINAL_1398130593.pdf









Show Comments ()
Gay Dad Family Stories

After Meeting in Culinary School, These Gay Dads Are Creating a Wonderful Life Together, Using Simple Ingredients

Jason and Patrick live in Charlottesville, Virginia with their daughters, and run a successful French-inspired bakery.

These gay dads own a successful French-inspired bakery and restaurant located in historic Charlottesville, Virginia. Chef Jason Becton, 41, lives in Charlottesville (where Thomas Jefferson's home Monticello is situated) with his baker husband Patrick Evans, 36, and their two daughters, Marian and Betty; they together are the owners of MarieBette, a popular bakery-restaurant in downtown Charlottesville that specializes in European foods, especially in delicious pastries from France. "Our business has become a gathering place for Charlottesvillians and we feel very welcomed here," shared Patrick. "The majority of people know that it is a business owned by two men married to each other with two kids."

Keep reading... Show less
Gay Dad Life

"Now We Have Everything": Congrats to Gay Dads Whose Families Recently Grew!

Wishing all of these gay dads whose families expanded in September a lifetime of happiness! Congrats to everyone in our community on their recent births and adoptions!

Keep reading... Show less
Foster/Foster-Adopt

5 Tips For Winning at Fatherhood From a Gay Foster Dad

Taylor McGregor, a gay dad through the foster care system, provides 5 tips for other gay men considering becoming a dad through foster care.

Adopted himself, Taylor McGregor, who who recently featured in a family profile, always knew he wanted to become a dad through the foster care system. And since becoming dads, they've learned some insightful (and practical) advice they'd like to share with all future dads:

Keep reading... Show less
Expert Advice

How to Get Your Little Ones to Eat (and Enjoy!) Their Vegetables

Meet David and Danny fathers and founders of Kekoa Foods sharing some tips on how to keep your little ones eating their healthy vegetables during the hecticness of the holidays.


Watch:

Tip Number 1 – Try to prepare your own meals with fresh ingredients. Doing so gives you better control over the amount of sugar, sodium and cholesterol you and your family consume.

Tip Number 2 – Experiment in your kitchen with herbs and spices you haven't used before. Some items we've added in recent years include cumin, tarragon, curry, turmeric and ginger. Start slowly, though, you can always add more next time.

Tip Number 3 – Use veggies instead of pasta to get more veggies in your diet. We like spaghetti squash, zucchini and beets for this purpose and toss them with our favorite sauce.

Tip Number 4 – Instead of adding cream to veggie dishes to get your kids to eat them, sprinkle them with just a touch of parmesan cheese and add fresh lemon juice. It enhances flavor without adding a significant amount of cholesterol or fat.

Sponsored

A 'Men Having Babies' Conference Started These Happy New Dads on Their Path to Parenthood

In the Bay Area? Sign up now for the next Men Having Babies Conference taking place this January 12-13!

Last year, after 12 years together, Jimmy Nguyen and Michael Duque were finally ready to become dads. And so in 2017 they began their journey to fatherhood. Little did they know how quickly that would become a reality. What began with a serendipitous sighting of an ad for an upcoming Men Having Babies conference resulted in the joyous birth of their son in October 2018. Here's their story.

Keep reading... Show less
Surrogacy for Gay Men

Understanding the Legal Process of Gay Surrogacy

Next up on the Daddy Squared podcast! Yan and Alex talk with a fertility lawyer, Richard Vaughn, about the legal elements of the IVF process

When thinking about having kids via surrogacy, the legal part is just as important as the IVF process itself. Making sure that the agreements with the surrogate and the egg donor are set up properly is a solid base for the whole process itself. And then there are issues like legal guardianship and birth certificates that are also crucial for finishing the process with babies that are completely, legally yours. We turned to Fertility Lawyer and gay dad Richard Vaughn of International Fertility Law Group, to set the record straight about the legal steps that must be taken when having babies through IVF.

Keep reading... Show less
Change the World

Rebel Dad: 1st Gay Canadian to Adopt Internationally Writes New Memoir

David McKinstry set a legal precedent in 1997. A few years later, with his second husband, Michael, he did so again when they became the first gay Canadian couple to co-adopt children.

Excerpt #1 – From Chapter 1: The Search (1793 Words)

As the first openly gay Canadian man approved to adopt internationally, David McKinstry set a legal precedent in 1997. A few years later, with his second husband, Michael, he did so again when they became the first gay Canadian couple to co-adopt children.

The following is an excerpt from the first chapter of his new book Rebel Dad: Triumphing Over Bureaucracy to Adopt to Orphans Born Worlds Apart. Here, it's 1998 and David finds himself in India. While in India, David visits several orphanages with his guide, Vinod, on his quest to adopt. With Indian adoption officials being extremely homophobic at the time, David could not reveal that he was a gay man.

Keep reading... Show less

Fatherhood, the gay way

Get the latest from Gays With Kids delivered to your inbox!

FOLLOW OUR FAMILIES

Follow Gays With Kids

Powered by RebelMouse