We can’t fix foster care… so let’s make it fun!
Don’t get me started on all the problems with our current foster care system. I know it is not perfect, and it is so frustrating that it has caused us to contemplate quitting many a time. I realize that the system is broken, and I can’t fix it, YET! But, what I can do is make it fun!
Think about this. How many foster kids that you know of chose to become a foster child? In fact, even our foster kids with the worst home lives still wanted to be home rather than in foster care. Being a foster kid is bad enough. The least we can do is make it fun.
Along those same lines, why would you want to be miserable as a foster parent? I know tons of foster parents that are miserable. They get hung up on all of the problems and negative aspects of foster care, and they begin to hate being foster parents. Does that even make any sense?
We’ve found that family activities make foster care fun for everyone!! Especially on the rare occasion when you can get caseworkers and bio-parents involved.
As foster parents, we love family activities, our foster kids love them, our own bio kids love them, and our friends who we often involve love our family activities.
Family activities give everyone a chance to let go of the problems and worries of life and build meaningful and positive relationships with everyone else.
Here’s a quick success story.
I remember a time when we had a young man in our home who was really struggling. He struggled at school, he struggle following the rules and having a good attitude in our home, and he really struggled having positive relationships with his family.
For this young man, everything was a mess. For us, every day seemed like a battle. We were never sure just how bad the day would be, but it felt like every day was tough. UNTIL …
You guessed it, we started doing regular family activities. We did things like play basketball at the park. We even let him invite his friends. We went to an indoor water park. We had movie and popcorn nights. We did tons of fun stuff with him.
All of the sudden things started getting easier. Things were still tough, but the tough times were offset by the fun times. Our foster son started trying harder at home and the tough times were fewer.
As we continued regular family activities, he tried harder at school. Things weren’t perfect, in fact he got expelled during this time, but this was more of a carry over of previous poor decisions.
Bottom line is, we started focusing on the fun. We all enjoyed the time that we had him in our home. Discussions in our home would often be about what we would do next for our family activity.
Make Family Activities happen in your home too.
If you want to have a greater impact on your foster kids. Or if you simply want foster care to be more fun for everyone, start doing regular family activities. It sounds hard, but all it takes is a little determination.
I promise that they pay off will be worth it!
To help you start to have family activities we’ve recorded a podcast specifically to help you start to implement this in your home. In the podcast, we discuss the steps that we use to ensure that family activities happen and that they are successful.
You can access that podcast episode here.
Catch you guys later,