5 Things to Remember About Reunification
Reunification is the main goal of foster care. Currently, 51% of children in care are reunified with their birth parents or primary caregiver.
So as a foster parent how do you cope with this?
You have shared a home and love with a child that must leave. So many are familiar with that happy sadness that follows a child’s reunification with their birth parents. Here are 5 things we want you to remember when coping with reunification.
1. Reunification Isn’t the Worst…It’s the Best
“Reunification isn’t the worst. It’s the best for the kids when it’s done safely. But I have been there and it friggen hurts. Hang in there. You feel like you’re dying and you can’t go on, then you get another call about more kids who need you. It helps some. I still have some that I cry over. Some that came back. Some we are still in contact with. This pain isn’t for everyone, but we have to remember why we are doing it.” –Christina Bedway Sipe
2. It is Brave to Love with All Your Heart
There are so many people who use “not wanting to get hurt” as an excuse, not foster. You should be proud of open and freely you love.
“Loving with your whole heart, just as you should. If you weren’t loving them as much as they deserve, it wouldn’t hurt so much.” –Sarah Pemberton
3. You are Strong
Your heart hurts but that is not a sign of weakness, it is a sign of your strength and willingness to be present.
“Your strength is immense.“- Cara Fraser
4. You Made a Difference
Birth parents are not the villain or bad guy. They needed help to create an environment that is healthy for their child and you helped make that happen. You helped give an entire family a gift, the gift of being together.
5. Get Too Attached
You got too attached and that is beautiful. Every child in foster care deserves to be loved fully, every child in the world deserves to be loved. Yes, not seeing their cute faces every day is hard. But this broken-heart will love again and we should all be more generous with our love.
Thank you for loving children in care. Thank you for being a soft place to land during a time of uncertainty. If more people shared their love and kindness with children in need, think about the world we would have.
For those interested in helping children in care, join Together We Rise HERE.