Saturday, January 25, 2020


Sad to learn from the news a couple of days ago that English youngsters in care are being taken in considerable numbers to homes in Scotland because they have the facilities.

The story was tucked away. I remember thinking that if it was something to do with cats or veterans it would be front page stuff, but kids

…well they don't have the vote, they don't have significant disposable income; so who cares. I'm not just blaming the news media, it's everybody. It seems to me like almost every adult has forgotten what it was like to be a child.

It's made me crosser and crosser the longer I parent, and the way fostering and me hit it off I'm going to end up parenting for the whole of my adult life.

So by the time I'm crumbling to bits I'll be mad as hell.

Look at the half-hearted way so many grown-ups try and fail to make any connection with children, if I had a pound for every time I heard;

"How old are you?" - like age is the defining issue right up front in the conversation.

Followed by;

"What do you want to do when you grow up?" - like as if the child isn't worth anything until it's an adult and can be further defined by their employment.

How come people are like this with kids? How come so many adults can't remember what it was like? (I've got a point here, let me have a rant, there's a bit of Piers Morgan in all of us).

I've been to stacks of Blue Sky training sessions with psychologists, I've read a bunch of books on how the mind works - or doesn't - from "Games People Play" by Eric Berne - 10/10 for fun, 8/10 for practical help to "Attachment" by Bowlby - 0/10 for fun, 11/10 for practical help. So I'm almost entitled to my opinion. Tell me if it's moonshine:

Most people romanticise they had a lovely childhood, but are in denial. In truth they spent their early days largely frightened, confused and pushed around by adults.

Everybody has 'triggers' - little things that bring on feelings they are hardly aware are inside them. 

Maybe…for many adults meeting children triggers dormant emotions they experienced during much of their childhood. They don't even know it happens to them, just that they get a bit thrown.

So they end up rejecting the trigger - the child. 

Anxious to move on they kill the conversation and get back to stuff with a adult - who doesn't trigger.

The point I mentioned earlier? 

It's that we need to care about children more. To be exact; the country needs more Foster Carers. 

If you're a Foster Carer like me, let people know it, and why you do it, and try to be ready to give people Blue Sky's number when they say to you (and it happens often) "I've been thinking about fostering…"

What does it take to be a Foster Carer? All sorts of things that often people don't realise they have.

I was a t school with a boy called Colin Foster. I always wondered if…nah, surely not.


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