Five Things You Can Do To Help Adoptive/Foster Families Part 1

Sandra Flach, of the Orphans No More Podcast, joins me again this week for the Positive Adoption Podcast series on the book Five Things: A Tiny Handbook for Foster/Adoptive Families. We’re sharing the first episode in our series – Five Things You Can Do To Help Adoptive/Foster Families. If you are an adoptive/foster parent, this is a great series to share with your friends, family, and church. It’s a more indirect way of asking for help. Who knows? You may help someone in need just by sharing! Grab a cup of coffee (and some tissues for this episode). Join Sandra and me for some tips and stories!

Why should you help Adoptive/Foster families?

Ever wonder what you can do to support adoption/foster care? Maybe you don’t feel as if you can take a child into your home. Maybe you already raised your children and you aren’t ready to start over. It may be that you have a heart for adoption, but it’s not time for you to walk the adoption road, a few more things may need to fall into place. The good news is, you don’t have to adopt/foster to support it. You can support those who do and it’s not terribly difficult.

External religious worship religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.”

James 1:27

We’ve all heard James 1: 27. Sometimes it stings. The directive is for all. But what if, as I mentioned above, you can’t foster or adopt? Don’t stress. There are some things you can do if you’d like to help. For the month of March, Sandra and I share four of the five things. I shared the first one on Instagram Tuesday (@the_whole_house).

Fill in for the family commitments while they get acclimated

If you haven’t adopted or fostered, you may be scratching your head right now, wondering what that even means. To put it into some context, when a family brings home a newborn, they may need some meals delivered, and if the infant is in NICU for some complications/health issues, they may not be able to fulfill some commitments for a while. Adoptive/foster parents need meals as well.

Disappearing Parents

Adoptive/foster parents will disappear off the radar for a while. It’s not because they are not committed to their church body, work, homeschool co-op, school, sport or other activity they had once been active in.

The Bible commands us to visit orphans and widows, There is a reason for that, they may be at home. Maybe the kiddos are grieving a life lost, maybe they are stuck in survival mode, and struggling with being around people.

The family with foster/adoptive children cocoons, trying with every fiber of their being to get these traumatized children to feel safe, leave survival mode and attach. It’s a tough job (with some children), there is no time or energy left for anything else for a season.

So, fill in for the family. Cover for them. Work the nursery their Sunday. Bring the book club or soccer snack. Don’t ask them to volunteer for anything for this season. Drop by with some dinner or strong coffee, but don’t be put off if you’re not invited to stay for hours and chat.

Don’t talk about them at church as if they have back-slidden. They are James one twenty seven-ing it all the way in their home mission field. Pretend adoptive/foster families are away in a foreign country if that helps you put it into perspective. Pray for the at-home missionaries just as fervently as you would those who are abroad!

Adoptive/foster parents, do you have any suggestions?

Are you an adoptive/foster parent?

Do you often feel alone in your journey? As if NO ONE else knows what’s going on in your home?

Because, which  of us stands on the sidelines of the soccer field and says to the neighboring Moms, “How are you coping with the effects of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in your child?” or “Is your child finally attaching or what?”  “How are those adoption/foster classes going?” No. The truth is most adoptive parents don’t say a word about what they are dealing with on a regular basis. They just try to blend in and look normal. How do I know? I am one of them.This is a great handbook to encourage you and let you know, you are not alone. Plus, it’s full of tips, real-life stories, and some great resources. Grab your free copy today.

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