A hopeful positive letter to children within the foster care system of America. They are presented with so much negative…it’s time they received a little positive.
Dear Fellow Foster Children/Alumni~
I know you may feel your life is currently in turmoil,
not in a place you really consider your home or
awaiting a final decision on a new place to call home.
You probably at times feel like you are alone in the
world, that no one else has or is going through what
you currently are.
You may feel that no one can
possibly understand or know what you are going
through. In most situations your case worker or foster
parents have never been in foster care so you think
“no you don’t know what I am going through.”
In most situations your feelings about others knowing
what you feel, understanding your feeling etc. are
probably true .
I, however, can tell you straight forward that I do
know what you are going through, I do know many of the
things you are feeling and understand them. I
know…because I have been exactly where you are
today. As many young say today, “Been there…done
I was a foster child from the day of my birth until I
aged out of the system at age eighteen. There is very
little you could share with me that I myself have not
I have felt alone, I have felt depressed, I have felt
that no one understood, I have felt no one really
cared about me and yes…I have even wondered if it
was worth living.
You are not as unique as you think you might be. In
matter of fact there are over 12 million who, besides
myself, have been exactly where you are at.
I am here to tell you that you can overcome ALL of
this. If I can…I know you can!
I do not know why you are in foster care. It might be
the same as me…from birth, it might be because of
troubles within your home that requires you to be out
of your home for a short or long term basis, it may
even be because of something that you did wrong for
others to feel you needed a temporary outside the home
situation or finally it might be that you are awaiting
a new family to become your Mom and Dad.
It does not matter why you are in foster care. What is
important is how you come out of foster care.
I know many aspects of the foster care system makes
you feel that you might be of no value, that you can
not be a success and many other negative attributes.
This is absolutely not true !
I felt many times while in foster care and being moved
from one home to another the same feelings many of you
are having. But I have been able to overcome them and
so can you!
YOU are of value! You can hold your head up proudly!
You can be whatever you choose to be!
Yes, even those of you who may have done something
wrong to get placed within the foster system…you can
overcome this mistake, it can become something of the
past. All of us have made a mistake is our lives, even
more than one, but we learned from our mistakes and
moved forward. You can do this as well. You need to
begin making those changes today.
Your foster parents do care about you and what happens
to you, whether you are in your current home for a
short term or a longer time. They would not be foster
parents if they did not care about children and want
to help. No, they are not in foster care for the money
they receive to assist in your care. In many
situations your foster parents will spend far more
than what they receive.
I will not say no foster parent will not do wrong.
Yes, as in every situation in life there may be a bad
one. This is true also with biological/adoptive
parents as well. If one does neglect you or do you
harm in any way then you must report it. Please make
sure any allegation you make however is in fact true .
Do not make allegations just because of how they may
have felt it necessary to discipline you one day and
you get angry at them. Never, ever make a false
I know most of you wish that you were not be in
foster care. That you would be home either with your
Mom and Dad or an adoptive family. That may or may not
come some day. You must make the very best of your
situation. I ended up aging out of the system. I never
had a permanent Mom and Dad all the time I was growing
up. Despite this I hope I have become a person any Mom
and Dad could have been proud of. That is my hope for
each and everyone of you as well.
I know you can do it! Study hard, work hard, know that
you have self-worth not only to yourself but to others
and you can reach for the highest of goals, don’t let
anyone convince you otherwise!
I survived eighteen years in foster care…you can to.
I got an education…you can to.
I made something of my life…you can to.
Today I serve on international Board of Directors for two worldwide
non profits working to improve the lives of youth around the globe.
I made it…if I can…I know you can!
A Fellow Foster Care Alum