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Chris10 12-06-2012 11:54 AM

Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
I have a foster son who has been with us for a little over two months. He's almost three. His mom had a visit on Thanksgiving day, which meant he had to go to respite for four nights since we would not be in town. We will be around for Christmas and I'm being told he will have a visit on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Obviously, social workers are not working on these days, so I'd either have to let biomom pick him up at my house, which will not happen since her boyfriend is violent (and I'm sure she'd tell him where we live- why wouldn't she?) OR I have to meet her somewhere in town to drop him off and pick him up on both days.

I don't feel that having to leave my family twice on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day is OK for DSS to ask me to do. If I say I won't do it, they'll put him in respite care again.

I've never had a foster child that has had visits on holidays and am confused as to why this mom is getting them. Does anyone else get asked to do this?

FindingMercy 12-06-2012 01:29 PM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
That seems odd. Does she get much visitation otherwise? And can they really ask a respite home to do that either?

I would push back a little bit and see if you can do either a Christmas Eve or Christmas day visitation, but not both.

juclark77 12-07-2012 05:10 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
The problem may just be your social worker. I would talk to your worker's supervisor. My worker is great, and she makes sure all our visits are scheduled around our family schedule.

Mama2ManyBoyz 12-07-2012 05:15 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
That's crazy. In our area, transportation services are closed and obviously workers are off so visits do not happen even if it is there scheduled day. Ditto to the previous commentor. Our caseworkers try their best to accomadate our family schedule. A few examples: We had a family birthday party and they requested bio dad drive closer to us so dfd would be home in time for us to leave. He got mad and they cancelled the visit. We requested the visit be changed so that we could attend the holiday Christmas party. They suggested a day, I suggested another one, and they gladly obliged. Sound like your caseworker is the problem. Push back.... respite is obviously not in the best interest of the child.

poopstermomma 12-07-2012 05:26 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
Push back. Aren't you going to be out of town? ;) no way to do visits. Bummer, guess they can schedule them when you get back.

millermyer2 12-07-2012 06:13 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
I agree with the OP. That is ridiculous for them to ask that of you!

luvsviola 12-07-2012 08:01 AM

We had to turn our family holidays upside down three years in a row or agree to overnights, which there was no way I was agreeing to. I hated it! Our social worker was super permissive with bios. We never got to travel. We had Christmas Day visits every year. We were told if we didn't agree they would send him to respite, which would have been horrible for him.

Our county also doesn't transport. Foster parents take the kiddos to bios home and pick kids up. No social worker is present for visits unless they are at DCS.

Mama2ManyBoyz 12-07-2012 08:32 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
Wow, I'm glad I live in an area that has more respect for foster families. At one point, I thought how sad that bios don't get to see their kids on holidays. Then it occurred to me, that in most cases it's nobody's fault but their own that their kids are in care and this is just one of the repurcussions of that. I would think they would be afraid of losing a lot of foster homes if they don't show more respect for their family time on holidays. That's just crazy.

Mama2ManyBoyz 12-07-2012 08:36 AM

Re: Visits w/ bios on holidays for foster kids?
I should also add that our agency would NEVER require us to drive kids to a visit or allow bios to the house for pick up. In fact, I think it might be one of our "rights" to keep our location private.

And as far as respite goes, I think it's just plain wrong to threaten with that. I think it's traumatic for kids who have already been moved so many times and my personal opionion is it should only be used if there are no other options. I've had kiddos for respite and honestly I've seen them go through a bit of grieving, especially if they are not old enough to understand that their foster mom's are coming back.

Ontariomama 12-07-2012 08:40 AM

That's what we did for our now-AS. His grandparents (who are very nice) met us in town at 10am and brought him back at bedtime. He still had the morning with us to open presents, then went to Gramma's house and spent the day with mom.

The next 2 yrs, we were going out of town, so they did his xmas visit the last working day before the holidays.

For a 3yo, 2 christmases is awesome. lol Just be prepared for the sugar-high when they get home. It's just part of fostering. I find the SWs more lenient when it looks like a placement will be short-term.

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