Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Rollercoaster much?

Although there are no definites in this world, especially when you're talking about foster care, today it seems like our little Niblet's dad is going to get her back.

He's working on it. He's getting an apartment. He seems not too scared about her needs. He managed to get her to fall asleep at the visit (although she only stayed asleep for 15 minutes).
He even seems to have heard what the judge said last week and asked for more visitation. He's getting a second visit per week for 3 hours, which will be moved to his home once he gets a place and it's approved.

Niblet's case worker is being obnoxious. Now that reunification is seeming more possible, she's distancing herself from us because she assumes (I can only assume) that we're going to be pushing to keep the baby and her job is to follow the laws and make reunification happen if at all possible.

WE UNDERSTAND THIS. We know that our job is to keep the baby safe while she's in our care. We know that part of this job is to help her dad learn about her and help transition her to him.
We also know that many foster parents do fight it and don't understand how things work. But little miss case worker (who's been in the job for about a year and is probably 25 years old or so) doesn't want to listen to us and doesn't want us to talk to the dad. Ever.

She's commanded that we not talk to the dad's case worker about anything except the visits. If we want to talk to the dad, she has to be there, and she's made it clear that she's not willing to facilitate that.

Which is horrible. We learned in our foster care class that it's our responsibility to make an effort to have a relationship with the parents of our foster children. The case workers, however, have no idea what our training entailed and apparently don't like us asserting ourselves.

We're, surprisingly, taking it relatively well. I feel like what's meant to happen will happen. Her dad is a good man. She will be okay if she lives with him. She won't be who she would be if she stayed with us, but she'll be safe.

We still want our own baby, though. If Cuteness leaves, we're probably going to abandon foster care as a method of growing our family. We'll still be foster parents and we'll take temporary kids at some point, but we're either going to try to get pregnant or go domestic private adoption.

Hopefully her dad will figure out what he wants and if he can have it as soon as possible. Twice a week visits for 2-3 hours should give him a good idea of what she's like. I hope.

Stay tuned.


michelle said...

That is just nuts. The foster parents are a huge key to reunification efforts and adoptive efforts.

We adopted a six year old from foster care in 2004 and it has been really great - challenging but great. I hope it happens for you all sooner rather than later.

I'm adding you to my blogroll b/c your blog looks really interesting - I actually found you on blogshares.

I have a friends-only LJ as well where I write more about our adoption.

FosterMommy said...

Thanks for the add.
What's blogshares?

It *is* crazy. We have a friend who's an experienced foster/adopt parent (she has adopted 8 children through foster and co-teaches the foster care class), so I emailed her and asked her to clarify what our role should be and what the case worker is allowed to mandate (and I vented a little, too!)
Hopefully she'll shed some light on it. I don't want to get our social worker involved quite yet.

Julie said...

I feel your pain- I am in a similar position and so sick of the system but sad for the kids i can't abandon the system- hang in there- this too shall pass. Talk to the baby's attorney and ad lidam if the case worker won't listen to let them know your concerns on reunification. that is what i am in the midst of right now. It is crazy!!!