Do foster and adoptive parents realise what they do?

Do foster and adoptive parents realise what they do?

By Marianne Skanland, Bergen, Norway




This article is an expansion of two contributions posted by Marianne Haslev Skånland at the Join-Hands discussion Forum on January 30 and 31, 2001.



I am not surprised, but disconcerted, at all the people who - in reality selfishly - believe that they help a child by isolating it from its biological family. Some of them seem to be active on this site too, complaining about the injustices done to them as good, caring foster parents, approved for adoption, and perfect in every way. They seem to think we should accept their "right" to respect for their every motive, while we should be ever suspicious of real parents who try desperately to keep their children or get them back?

Perhaps you might like to visit (click the British flag for the section in English). A large body of research shows that many, even the majority, of adopted and fostered children feel unsettled, feel that their childhood and youth are wasted.

They search and long for their own real family even in cases where their constructed substitute is all that one would theoretically want for a child. They are bitter against those who have cheated them of a life with their own family. All dependable statistics demonstrate that the chances are quite high that a child's life is tragically destroyed by placing it away from its family, however imperfect or humble. Only if the child's parents and other family are all dead is placement for adoption or fostering an unquestionable good. In other cases, if there is REALLY a genuine reason why the child cannot live at home on a daily basis, the only remedy which works to some extent is to settle it so close by that it can see its parents and/or other relatives whenever it wishes.

I can just hear the chorus of protesting foster parents, adoptive parents and social workers at this. They know that if the child can run home to its real family whenever it wants to, they themselves lose their power over the child; it will then be clearly revealed both where the child wants to be and that there is no real reason why it should not be there. Yes indeed, these social engineers' fear of the child's family is the best proof we have that they do not want to contribute to the good of a child but rather use the child for their own good, be it emotional or financial.

An illustrative posting was made by one "fostermom-2-many", on January 20, 2001. She informs her readers that she has experienced retaliation from the cps (Child protective services) - apparently the foster children have been removed and her licence as a foster mother has been revoked - because she has disagreed with the cps over something relating to her foster children. She maintains that she represents the voice of abused and neglected children and wants other foster parents to join forces with her. - Several important questions immediately present themselves, to which I must draw her attention:

To the "fostermom-to-many":

The problem is that you - a foster mother to many children who have been deprived of their real parents - are probably NOT helping abused and neglected children - NOT speaking up for the children in your care. You are more likely acting as a jailer on behalf of the cps, a jailer of children whom the cps SAY have been neglected or abused by their parents.

Tell me, have you contacted the parents of the children you hold? Have you understood what a terrible tragedy the cps have inflicted on the children by cutting them off from their loved ones? Do you sympathise with the children when they are bitter, hostile, unruly or depressed, realising that it is due to the tragedy of having been deprived of the only people which nobody and nothing can replace? Do you try to compensate as much as possible by promising the children that you will do your best to maintain their life-line to their family? Have you offered to take the children to visit their parents at least every week? Have you invited the parents to visit the children as often as they can? Do you see to it that the children have ample opportunity of phoning and writing to their parents and that they have privacy together with their parents when they meet? (By the way, preventing telephone or mail contact, between parents and their children in the care of others, has been condemned as contrary to human rights by the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.) Do you try to help the parents too, so that their situation is improved to the extent that the children can soon go home to them? ( - if there really is anything wrong with their situation, of course - but so often there isn't, and there is no reason why the children should not go back home directly). Do you spend every cent you get from the cps on the children, contributing some of your own money too towards their food and clothing? Have you understood that whatever you experience in the way of "retaliation" from the cps is what the parents of these children have suffered, at least equally unjustifiedly but much, much worse for them than for you, because they are real parents, not care-givers in business through social engineering?

If you can reply "yes" to all these questions, you truly do some good for children whose parents are not able to have their loved ones with them all the time. If you cannot, you are one of the tools making it possible for the CPS to destroy families, the children at least as much as their parents. 


The resentment of foster- and adoptive parents

The Alexander Case - A Confiscated Child

I have no faith in social workers

The State replacing parents in Sweden and North Carolina

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