Becoming foster parents?

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
That's awesome. Whatever happens your heart is in the right place. We're still one court date away from finalizing our adoption. Worked on it for nearly 2 years and were set to go to court March 17th for the judge to stamp the final papers. Covid hit and shut everything down March 16th including court proceedings and they won't do family court via video conferencing so we wait.

We already have our first hiccup while looking at the possibility of adoption.

The mother, who is a drug addict, decided she wanted to fight for custody and is entering residential rehab.

Earlier this week 2 case workers, from 2 different agencies, assured us that the mother is absent, has no interest in the child will not make her court appearance. Case workers were wrong. Mom wants the child. Attended the court appearance with a lawyer. Had a plan to regain custody. Much as we've bonded with him it just makes sense to favor the natural mother.

We now know that we have custody until the next court date, which is set for Sept 30 of this year. At least we now know some sort of timeline. Up until not we didn't know if we would have him for a couple weeks, couple months or a couple years. While we know for fact that we have him into the fall of this year, we PROBABLY will have him for more like 18 months (give or take 6 months) based on the average time to complete the process of reclaiming custody.
 

NorthernRedneck

Well-known member
GOLD Site Supporter
That's the frustrating thing about child welfare. There's no telling sometimes what will happen and things come out of left field without warning.

As a worker, sometimes I would work for weeks or months on a plan for a child and have everything in place then something totally unexpected would happen and I'd have to scramble with only a couple hours to go before a significant life event occurred that changed all my planning.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
So it looks like we are going to be losing our little baby Felix (Kobe) very soon.

The state wants to strip custody from the mom and put him into a 'pre-adoptive' home. At a few months shy of 60 years old I'm too old to adopt him. I'd be pushing 80 when he enters college. And while I have no plans/desires to die soon, the reality is that if we adopt this beautiful baby boy we could also end up orphaning him and throwing him into the adoption cycle again in the future. Or, conversely we'd be turning our currently 25 year old daughter into a mother.

Somehow none of that seems fair to him (or to Melen).

Just seems like the right choice is to move him into a home where he can be adopted and live with a forever family. Not sure how quickly he will be moved out of our home, but I'd guess pretty quickly :neutral:
 

NorthernRedneck

Well-known member
GOLD Site Supporter
That's the tough thing about fostering. When the child is gone, there's a feeling of loss similar to when someone dies only worse because they are still very much alive but you struggle with the fact that you likely will never see them again.

But we pull up our big boy panties and keep plugging forward awaiting the next child who will come into your life and steal your heart. It never gets easier.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
Well we have not notified anyone we won't keep him and adopt him. We basically have remained silent at this point. This is really tough.
 

pirate_girl

Poster Extraordinaire
GOLD Site Supporter
I'd be bawling my eyes out if I had to say goodbye to a beautiful little baby.
You all did well Bob in giving him the love and care you have.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
Well the lovely Mrs_Bob is wrestling with all this.

Meanwhile there is a beautiful baby boy asleep on the couch next to me (and also next to Walter the female rescue dog) while the morning WGN9 news plays in the background.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
So we had a meeting with the state child/family services lady who is in charge of the case of our little Kobe (Felix).

Looks like they will NOT be moving him out of our house anytime soon. A bit over a week ago we were told that they wanted to move him to a "pre-adoptive" home. BUT, apparently the natural mother, who is a drug addict, is playing some games, and the state feels it is not in the best interest of the baby to move him out of our home. All the medical reports and the agency reports show that he is thriving in our home. The want to keep him thriving and feel he is best off here, at least for the near future.

We had the heart-to-heart conversation with her about the realities of our age, our concerns and what is best for him. Actually the lovely Mrs_Bob did 90% of the talking, which I think was good. She verbalized all the downsides, I think she is coming to grips with the fact that we really are too old to be adopting an infant.

She told us that ultimately he will be moved, but it is likely at least 6 months away, possibly 18 months away.

I think it took away some of our fear that he'd be gone soon. We now have a bit of a timeline and it looks very likely we will have him through the end of the calendar year and possibly quite a bit longer. In some ways that will make things harder when its time to give him up, but it also takes away our immediate fear that we will get a phone call saying they are coming to pick him up.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_7656.jpg
    IMG_7656.jpg
    115.1 KB · Views: 35

NorthernRedneck

Well-known member
GOLD Site Supporter
Good stuff. That's the thing about fostering. The child could be gone tomorrow. You just don't know. You get attached to them but the reality is that you know in the back of your mind that you could get a call tomorrow telling you to pack up his things and they'll be there to pick him up in a few hours.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
Had another meeting with our social worker for Kobe. Looks like we will be losing Kobe in February.

We know we will have him at least thru a late January court date, so we have him for the holidays and can plan for having him through January, but not much longer.

The state will be asking for his mother's rights to be revoked at the next hearing, which will be in late January. So shortly thereafter it is likely that Kobe will move to a family that will become his adoptive parents. The lovely Mrs_Bob will be heartbroken but I'm glad we found out today, it will give us time to adjust to the reality that we know he is going to be moving and that we have a timeline.

One thing we have always had is uncertainty. This seems to take that away.

Our case worker was pretty sure it will be pretty quick after the January court date.


*** His mother is not complying with anything at this point, other than she asked to regain custody at the initial hearing she has done absolutely nothing to try to regain her rights. So UNLESS THAT CHANGES DRAMATICALLY there is no chance she will regain custody rights.
 

NorthernRedneck

Well-known member
GOLD Site Supporter
That's the tough part of fostering. Glad he will have a sense of permanency though.

I talk to myself to get an expert opinion.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
My cousin's daughter wants to adopt. She & her husband are already foster parents and approved for adoption.

  • We are making a trip to Columbus, OH with Kobe on Monday to have them meet our boy. We've had extensive talks with her.
  • Our case worker in IN for Kobe is in favor of transferring Kobe to them for the purposes of adoption.
  • The state has NOT yet taken away the mother's rights to Kobe, but intends to start the formal process at our next court hearing in January.
  • Kobe's mother reportedly has not responded to the court orders for rehabilitation, job searching, etc.
  • Between now and that court hearing we plan to have a couple trips to Columbus.
  • She & her 2 sons will probably come here a couple times. Her husband is being deployed on Wednesday so he will not be coming here. Because he is being deployed this may be the only time he gets to see Kobe until he is transferred to their home, which could happen as early as February.
  • She has family that is still local to me and comes to this area of IN a few times a year.

For us this would be a huge win as we would get to remain, at least partially, in his life when he ultimately gets adopted. We are very hopeful that all this will work out for all of us.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt
Staff member
GOLD Site Supporter
Got my fingers crossed for y'all. :thumbup:

Thanks Frank

We were in contact with my "niece" (not sure what she is, as she is my 1st cousin's daughter ... is that a niece, or a 1st cousin once removed???) shortly after we got him. We had some discussions but didn't know how to work the cross-state line issue, and at that point it was pre-mature to even consider it because Kobe's mother, in the 1 and only court appearance she showed up for, said she wanted to regain custody.

Everything has been moving toward the state removing custody. Now is the time to act and doing this now would keep us in his life. If we didn't have them, we'd lose him as he moved back into the "system".
 

jillcrate

Active member
Good luck Bob,

Not easy to become foster parents....... I hope it all goes well..... I will say a prayer for you!
 
Top