What is it like at age nine to be removed from your home and placed in foster care? What is it like to be told someone wants to adopt you, only to have that person change her mind? Michelle talks about her real life experiences as a child in foster care, including being raised cross-culturally and what having a CASA (court appointed special advocate) meant to her.
Teenagers in foster care have a say in whether adoption will be their goal. Some teens choose to “age out,” aka stay in foster care until they turn 18 and then live on their own. Why would a young person stop searching for a permanent family?
Some answers from actual “aged out” young adults:
- I was scared
- My older brother didn’t want me to leave him behind in foster care
- It was too permanent
- I thought that since I had been with the same foster family for a while that I didn’t need a permanent family
What did these young people discover as they got older? That family matters at any age. To have people who love you, who support you, and who can be relied upon – no one ever outgrows that need.
Check out this video “Youth Voices: Life After Foster Care” from the Dave Thomas Foundation that aims to educate teens in foster care about why they should take a risk and say yes to seeking an adoptive family.