Thursday, January 08, 2009

It's That Time of the Month

not THAT time you silly people ....

Matching Bash time -- the time where social workers send me profiles of kids, I get them posted, and we try to find families for them.

It's also the time where even I, the one full of optimism and hope, get very discouraged. Some of these children I have been trying to find homes for for 3 or 4 years. Some of them are difficult, some of them are not. Some are just older, or have a diagnosis that scares people .... but as I try year after year I see their futures get more and more dismal....

I am fed up with children who have been adopted get angry and punish and blame their adoptive parents while some children who are actually very loving and want a family more than anything somehow fall through the cracks and end up without anyone.

And I won't even get started on the many things in the system that make successfully placing and parenting these kids such a difficult task....

And finally, I'm amazed that this issue is one that is overlooked by so much of society... and how government seems to turn a deaf ear to the most marginalized populations, further compounding the problem.

The children whose pictures are in my email inbox this morning -- the teens and hard to place children -- are tomorrows inmates, tomorrows unwed mothers, tomorrows homeless. They are tomorrows unemployed, tomorrows institutionalized, tomorrows mentally ill, tomorrows disenfranchised, tomorrows marginalized adults who cannot, often because of situations out of there control, be contributing members of society.

And we all know that just because they are adopted does NOT mean that they won't turn out that way anyway, but they deserve a chance to be shown a different side of life. And even if they end up that way, doesn't every child who becomes an adult deserve to have one parent committed to love them unconditionally for a life time?

Most of us got that without asking.

A friend I was talking to recently is from England and now lives in the U.S. He was talking to a friend of his, who is in the military, about the conflict in Kosovo, and the conversation they had has stuck with me for weeks... and his answer seems to be the only answer to the situation with damaged foster children and a complex child welfare system. It is the only answer for us as adoptive parents when things seem bleak and hopeless.

He said, "Why would you continue to invest time and resources for decades in a situation that seems hopeless ?"

and his response was, 'Because we have to try."


debbie said...

i really enjoyed your post today.


FAScinated said...

Amen, Claudia.

Today as you work again to find families for the children whose faces you are so already familiar with, remember that it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Torina said...

I know someone who is looking to adopt an 11-12 yr old girl. Have any? I can send her your way :)

Loved your post today. Every kid deserves a permanent family.


PeWee said...

"Because we have to try" abosolutely.

My DH and I did try and the system broke us. We feel like failures, but the system refused to allow us to succeed!

QueenB said...

As I was reading your post regarding the children being tomorrow's inmates, homeless, institutionalized, etc, a thought struck me. I had just finished reading Torina's post showing the frustration and lack of services, understand, and help for severely damaged, however adopted, children. See, if you DON'T adopt the children, they will fare better! They will have a place to live (prison, institution, homeless shelter) and societal services will bust their tails dealing with them. They will get a whole lot of attention and services for their issues! However, once adopted into a family, well, you know, it becomes the magical family's problem. You know, these wonderful families who have limitless resource at their fingertips and can magically cure all these problems...........sigh..
Of course, this is written tongue in cheek. Every child deserves a family. We pray for you in your work to find them.

tbirdonawire said...

Our oldest, who is now 19, spent just as much time in residential or therapeutic foster care as he did in our home. We never abandoned him, but his RAD self felt that way and never let himself get close to us. He just knew he could make it on his own as an adult. Guess who calls home when he needs something and then once he gets it disappears again until he needs something else? Guess who continues to meet the needs without crossing the line of enablement each time he has a need. Guess who will continue to be there for him when no one else is? He knows deep down that we're there for him. He may think he's getting away with using us, but we know better. He can think what he wants, he's our son and always will be. He might not have that if he aged out the system without a family.

r. said...

In the Jewish tradition we have the saying, "It's not up to you to complete the task, but neither are you free to desist from it."