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Why Foster Parents Shouldn't Hesitate to Utilize Respite Care

respite foster care

As a caring foster parent, it's easy to think that utilizing respite care is not in your child's best interest. Respite care is...

  • another new environment

  • another adult or two that the child must learn to trust

  • a disruption to their routine

  • a risk

You may feel bad about utilizing respite care but please allow me to help you see respite care from a different perspective. When a respite family is well-trained, available, and a good fit for your child, respite care is an opportunity for your child to:

  • have a new, fun experience - maybe the respite family has a cute dog, a playground, a child the same age, a game they come to love

  • not see all change as bad

  • build a positive relationship with another family in case you need respite care again in the future

Last but not least, respite care is an opportunity for your child to get the best of YOU.

There are so many reasons why a foster parent may seek respite care. Regardless of the reason, respite care is something you deserve to utilize. Having a short period of time without your children will refresh you and help you be a better parent - whether you're a foster parent, biological parent, adoptive parent or kinship parent. Our children need us desperately to be present and model healthy living for them. It's hard to do that when we're experiencing burnout and stress. Respite care may be exactly what you need to help be the best parent you can be for your child(ren).

Every county and state is different when it comes to the availability of respite care. In most areas, there aren't enough respite care providers. If you know someone who would make a great respite foster parent, please encourage them to pursue it.

To learn more about respite foster care through inspiration, humor and information, follow @respitefostermom on Instagram.

Emily | Respite Foster Mom


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