Life can be tough for a child in foster care. They often have to deal with the emotional pain of being separated from their birth parents, as well as the challenges of living in a new home with unfamiliar people. As a result, it’s important to be sensitive when speaking with a child in foster care.
1. Are You Looking Forward to Going Home?
This question can be very frustrating, as it’s usually unclear when the child will get to go back home. It’s possible that they could return tomorrow, but there is no guarantee of an imminent return date. Additionally, some children in foster care are not interested in returning to their birth families, so it is best to avoid asking this question altogether.
2. Where Are Your Parents?
This is an uncomfortable question for children in foster care, as they are typically not allowed to speak about their birth parents. This is because it can be too emotionally traumatic for them. Additionally, these children have often had tumultuous relationships with their parents, so asking this question only brings up bad memories and feelings of anger or sadness.
3. What’s Wrong With Your Family?
This question is also a terrible idea. Many children in foster care have had extremely negative experiences with their families and may even have witnessed abuse. Asking this question only brings up these painful memories and doesn’t help the child to feel any better.
4. Why Are You in Foster Care?
No child can choose to be in foster care, so never ask this question. In many cases, children are placed into the foster care system because of serious issues with their families. This can include issues such as neglect, abuse from other family members, and drug addictions. If a child is being abused by family members, it’s best not to bring up the issue at all.
5. What Are You Going to do When You Grow Up?
This question can be overwhelming for a child in foster care, as they may not know what their future holds. They may have been in and out of different homes and may not feel like they have control over their life. It’s best not to ask this question and instead let the child know that you are there for them, no matter what happens in the future.
6. What School Did You Go To?
Many children in foster care have to switch schools frequently, as they are constantly moving from home to home. As a result, they may not have developed strong attachments to their previous schools. Asking this question can make the child feel like they need to explain themselves, and it also opens them up to potential judgement from others.
7. Tell Me an Instance You Were Afraid of Most?
This question can be difficult for a child in foster care, as they may not want to discuss their experiences with fear. Many children in this situation have had traumatic experiences, and talking about them can be very painful. It’s best to avoid asking this question altogether and try to find another way to get to know the child.
If you want to help a child in foster care, the best thing you can do is avoid asking them any of these questions. Instead, try to be supportive and understanding. Let them know that you are there for them, no matter what happens. And most importantly, listen to what they have to say.