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Questions to Avoid Asking a Foster Parent

Aug 29, 2014

A foster parent is anyone who has taken in a child who is not their own, and acts as the caregiver. Being a foster parent can be difficult, and it may take some time before the foster child gets completely integrated into the home. You may be curious to know what being a foster parent feels like, but you should know that there are some questions to avoid asking foster parents. Some of them include.

1. Are you doing it for the money?
To ask this is to suggest that the foster parent is selfish and can only accept to take care of a child because of financial reasons. Most foster parents actually do it for love and the need to care for a child who is not their own. Do not ask whether they are getting paid. It is rude!

2. Aren’t the kids damaged?
There is a misconception that children from foster care systems are all damaged and staying with them is a risk. Do not ask a foster parent about the risk they are putting themselves in by taking in foster children. When you do that, you are helping in pushing the stereotypes. The role of a foster parent is to help guide the child, so do not corrupt that.

3. What about their real parents?
You may want to know the details of the birth parents of the foster child, but to keep asking about them is to undermine the role of the foster parents. Remember that the details about the child’s real parents are supposed to be treated as confidential, so you should always respect that and stop digging for details.

4. Are they appreciating you enough for what you are doing for them?
Do not ask this. In as much as it is a great thing foster parents are doing when they are taking in the children, they are not doing it for themselves. They do not need the child to keep thanking them for what they are doing. Remember, it is an extension of love, not a favor.

5. Is there a reason why they were put in foster care?
When you ask this, you are insinuating that there could be a problem with the child. It shows that you think that maybe they did something that caused them to end up in foster care. You need to understand the different circumstances that can make children go to foster homes.

6. Are you allowed to discipline them?
When one takes in foster a foster child, they become their parents. That is the whole essence of fostering. So, yes, they are definitely allowed to punish within limits. Just like the birth mother would have done.

7. Can they date your biological children?
You should understand that even though a foster parent might have children of her own, once she takes in a foster child, they become a unit. So, there is no dating, or relationships that can be allowed. They become siblings.

These are some of the questions to avoid asking a foster parent. Always remember that they became foster parents because they care.