Archive for March, 2011

Foster kids don’t belong in glorified fucking taxis

On my way to work today, I saw a parade of taxis.  I did not know where they were going and I did not know what they were doing.  There must have been 20-30 of them all driving down the road. I did not see any people in the back seat, but in some it was hard to tell.  I did not know what was going on.  But,  what I do know is that it bought back unpleasant memories of growing up in foster care.  Memories that other foster kids DO NOT need to have, if we prohibit the fucking glorified taxi service that transports foster kids.

Here me out…

You see, foster kids have many appointments in their daily lives ~ therapists, psychiatrists, doctors, dentists, physical therapy, visitation with bioparents, social workers, court appointments, etc.  etc.   And because of this,  many foster kids find themselves in the seat of  A TRANSPORTER;which is  a volunteer who jitnies kids around when the foster parents can’t or won’t; a glorified taxi service if you want…

Read this loudly:

I HATED TRANSPORTERS.

No, not the people themselves, because I barely knew the “transporter”…. which is the point. I DID NOT know these people moving me about my life from appointment to appointment.  They did not know me, so they did not really care about me.  They “transported” me…

You see what I am saying?

Imagine this….

You come out of a therapy session needing support and caring, understanding and connectedness.  You are full of feelings and need someone you can relate to.  But oh shit, you come out to a “taxi”, because instead of  your foster parent, you get a “transporter.”

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Imagine this….

You come out of a doctor’s appointment scared and in the middle of a PTSD reaction because of the touching of your body or the power imbalance.  You need connectedness and caring… but instead are greeted by a glorified taxi driver…your “transporter.”  Your foster parent is nowhere to be found.

It is hard enough for foster kids to attach or bond and to trust people, don’t you see how “this little thing” could effect a foster kid?

Would you put your biokids in a taxi and send them off to an appointment?

Especially young kids?

Would you?

During these jitnies, sometimes I sat in the front and the “transporter” talked to me; sometimes I sat in the back and all I heard was talk radio or really bad music… and sometimes I sat in silence.  But even if the “transporter” talked to me, THEY DID NOT KNOW ME…. They didn’t know my demons, my battles, my fears, my pains, my joys, my successes…my life.  I did not trust them, they weren’t connected to me..

I felt alone.  Alone again.

I never understand why the job of the “transporter” is to transport kids when the foster parents CAN’T or WON’T do so.   Ok, CAN”T, I can understand.  At times, people get sick, the car breaks down, so I can understand CAN’T sometimes. But WON’T…..WTF?  WON’T.  If you WON’T transport your foster child to appointments which are part of their lives, why are you a foster parent? Please tell me why?

Foster kids, already FEEL different.  But when you use “transporters,” we FEEL more different, unimportant, and just like “the foster kid.” We don’t FEEL part of the normal world, because in the normal world, a parent takes their child to the doctors, to therapy, to the dentist, etc. Everytime I went with a “transporter,” a voice screamed inside my head, “you are not important enough for us to care about you.”

Do you hear what I am saying?    Be the parent —  because you are IT when the kids are living with you. And parent’s drive their kids to appointments to be their for them…correct?

As I watched the line of taxis drive by, I remembered all the times I sat in “transporter’s” cars and looked out the window, feeling alone and not important enough for my foster parents to drive me.  No matter how many miles the distance from my foster home to the appointment, I would have rather walked because either way…  I was alone.

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March 29, 2011 at 10:26 pm 36 comments

Things that SUCK about being a foster kid…

 

Based on too many years…

 

FOSTER HOMES

Never knowing when or where you might be moved… so that you NEVER have a sense of comfort and security.

Waking up in a strange bed, in a strange room, with strange lighting, and strange noises….frequently.

Forgetting your address because well, you have had so fucking many.  And forgetting how to get home, for the same reason.

Always wearing hand-me-downs.

Getting your period… without your real mom being there.  And being too scared to tell “the foster mom” that you just moved in with yesterday.

Getting used to a new house.  Where is the bathroom?  Where is the TV room?  Where are the toys?  I’m lost.

Knowing that another “state-kid” slept in the bed that is now yours…you are just one in a bunch passing thru

Being beaten or raped again… see your bioparents did that, but foster care is *supposed* to be safe.


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GROUP HOMES

Being the youngest in a large group home…oh shit.

Working in a kitchen and kids thinking you could score some extras for them.

Fighting off unwanted advances from both girls and boys.

Bunking in a room with 3 other girls…no fucking privacy, ever.

Green jello.

The sterile white small-tiled bathroom…that all girls on the floor used; and where you could get the shit kicked out of you.

The point system.   Fuck you. -10 points!      Kiss My Ass. -Another 10 Points!

Having to sign out, even if you just want to take a walk at age 15….

Storage rooms or basements that are left open or have locks that can be picked.

Broken toys, ripped books, missing pieces. …

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SCHOOL

Sitting in a classroom and having no idea what is going on, because you just moved from 3 different schools.

When everyone gets a yearbook, but you because “there is no money.”

Teachers basically ignoring your work, because you will be moved again, so why bother?

Not graduating because you stayed back because you moved so much… and now you are aging-out without a degree.



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“THE SYSTEM”

Sitting in a workers office, for HOURS, behind all the piled paperwork, while she is frantically trying to find a placement for you.

Transporters who take you to and from appointments or meetings; because the foster parents can’t or won’t.  Who the hell are these people to me?  Talk about fucking uncomfortable. Just more people in our world that we don’t really matter to…to move us around.

Not getting braces or other medical care, because there is NO money, or the only doctor that takes Medicaid is booked for the next fucking month.

Sitting in a permanency hearing and “the system” blowing smoke up your ass, when they state that your permanency goal is “adoption” but you are 12 years old and even you know that no-one is ever going to adopt you.

When the workers and foster parents talk about you like you are not even in the room. Hey, STOP THAT.

Family court judges that reprimand your attitude, when your world is a mess.

When your foster brothers and sisters are moved, just as they were becoming your friends.

Social workers that never answer their phone or return voice mail. Almost all the workers I had, have this problem.

Family court judges who focus more on what you wear to court, than what you have to say.

GALs that never talk TO us, but talk AT us.

Having to sign papers, that you don’t have time to read, because the worker has not seen you in months so she did not bring them to you beforehand….

March 14, 2011 at 8:17 pm 52 comments

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