If you follow me, especially on Instagram, I am sure you’ve noticed we suddenly have another boy hanging out with us. I haven’t addressed the fact that I reference three boys (or 4 kids total) now when talking about our family. I don’t quite know how. I have to tread lightly but I figured a post like this might help others and I have been wanting to share with you all, anyway.
My nephew is currently placed with us and has been for a while now. He has lived with us in the past but never ‘officially’, if you know what I mean. L is only 6 months younger than K and he first came to live with us when he turned 2 and stayed until just before his 3rd birthday. You might have also noticed my new obsession with allergy friendly foods. This is because L has quite a bit of food allergies.
I had never heard of Kinship Foster Care before being put in this situation. Basically, it means we are his foster parents, but we have had a previous relationship with the child. In our case, this means relatives, but neighbors and family friends can be kinship, as well. Most foster parents go in looking to care for children; they get licensed, take classes and go through a long process. Kinship is a different story, there is no license initially, though you can get one by taking classes, doing inspections and interviews and more. Just one day there is a kid you already know, brought to you for care. With little to no preparation or notice and bio-parents (who you also know personally) that are angry.
We are dealing with all the kinds of drama you might imagine when a family member has their child removed from their care and placed with someone else. It seems there is a lot of what I call the blame game. How are we supposed to feel when our nephew starts calling us Mom and Dad? Good because he is comfortable and happy and feeling loved. But also horrible, because we know how hard knowing that would be on his parents.
We will continue doing what we are doing for as long as we need to. If you are in a similar situation, know you are not alone and please feel free to reach out to me! It has been a nerve racking year, filled with an insane amount of love paired with no control and no clue what will happen in the future. Regardless, we feel blessed to have L be such a big part of our family; he is the sweetest boy!