How Fostering Your Siblings Works


Most children and teens in the foster care system have experienced significant rejection, whether their biological parents ignored their most fundamental needs or acted violently against them in some way to bring a false semblance of control to the chaos of their own lives. — Blake Griffin Edwards, MSMFT, LMFT

Most of the time, siblings put into foster care have already been through so much. They need each other to get through difficult times and support each other in the absence of their legitimate parents. However, when all possibilities have been exhausted, the foster care system allows these children to be split into different caregivers or homes. An alternative solution to avoiding sibling separation and saving sibling relationships falls upon the sibling at least 18 years of age.

Kinship Foster Care

Can I Foster My Siblings?

Yes, it is possible. An older sibling may foster their immediate brothers and sisters, stepsiblings, and cousins. Fostering your siblings is along the lines of relatives fostering their nieces, nephews, and grandchildren. This type is called kinship foster care.

How Am I Considered Legible In Fostering For Them?

Foster care for siblings involves the active role of the local authorities as they perform thorough assessments. Therefore, the sibling must qualify as a caregiver by undergoing a strict evaluation from the social worker.

Applying for fostering siblings requires the carer to be at least 18 years old with a stable source of income and residence of their own. Local authorities urge aspiring foster carers to check their local laws on the foster care requirements. Once approved, the foster carer signs a foster agreement confirming their roles, responsibilities, and limitations as the carer.

…you are looking for caregivers who not only have the capacity to parent just as any typical American parent would, but you are also looking for caregivers who have the capacity to parent children effectively who have mental health conditions, sometimes coupled with physical health conditions, sometimes coupled with developmental conditions. — Jill Duerr Berrick, PhD


Is Any Support Given To Foster Carers Like Me?

In this setup, carers receive developmental and financial support from local authorities. The state supervises the children’s upbringing and requires carers to work with professionals while the children are under their care. This kind of development support helps carers learn techniques from professionals.

They also receive training to improve their parenting skills. Older siblings fostering their siblings receive allowances to support the child and kinship care payments.

Informal Kinship Care                                                                                                 

This setup is typical among grandparents who take over as parents after a kid’s parents have gone. The difference between informal and kinship care lies in the appointment of the guardian, the duration of the child’s stay, and the support given by the government.

[Social services] always assesses to see if the child(ren) can remain in the home while supportive and strengthening services are offered to the parents.  However, if it is determined that child(ren) cannot safely remain in their homes during this time and we will further assess to see if they can be placed with relatives, as placement with a family member usually serves the best interests of the child due to the continuity of family connections, ties and identity. — Meredith Resnick L.C.S.W.

Appointment And Supervision

In fostering a child, kinship foster care shares similarities with informal kinship care. However, the informal way involves birth parents assigning a foster parent without local authorities’ direction. Some cases involve birth parents making verbal agreements with the concerned carers to care for their child in their absence. Without a formal appointment, the government cannot supervise the child’s foster carers.


Duration Of Foster Care

Compared to kinship foster care, the informal route gives parents the power to take the children back at any given time. Unlike in kinship foster care, there is no contract to honor in this setup. Under due process, the government also has the power to take children away from neglectful foster families despite the informal arrangement.

Support For Informal Arrangements

Under informal kinship, the birth parents are usually responsible for financially supporting the child. Besides, universal support is available to all children regardless of needs. Carers may also apply for additional support based on their discretion. The Child Services department grants this extra help.

In the end, when you are an older sibling trying to look out for the best interests of your kin, you can always choose to become their foster carer. Both kinship and informal foster care have pros and cons. It is crucial to ponder whether you are indeed capable financially, physically, and mentally for such a great but fulfilling responsibility.

Give Them a Voice-Americas Homeless Veterans

Did You Know?

someone to talk


The most recent Global Homeless Reports estimated that there are more than over 100 million homeless people worldwide.  In America alone, it is estimated that these numbers range between 1.6 million and 3.5 million. Due to the transient nature of the homeless population, exact counts by state or community are not available and estimates are based on data available from a number of sources. It is also estimated that 11% of the total homeless population is made up of adult Veterans.

Based on reports and data from The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, it is estimated that over 39,000 veterans are homeless on any given night.

Once a veteran gives his or her life over to combat, their life perspective, mind, and emotions change, sometimes for the worst. — Támara Hill, MS, NCC, CCTP, LPC

Who Are These Homeless Men And Women?

homeless veteran


These are men and women that served in the American Armed forces during:


  • World War II
  • Korean War
  • Cold War
  • Vietnam War
  • Grenada
  • Panama
  • Lebanon
  • Persian Gulf War
  • Afghanistan and Iraq (OEF/OIF)


It is also estimated that nearly 50% of these homeless veterans served America during the Vietnam War.

 A cohort study collecting data on 310,685 individuals who served in the military from 2005 to 2006 reported a five-year homeless incidence at 3.7 percent after leaving the military. That same study identified the strongest predictors of homelessness as military pay grade, substance abuse, and being diagnosed with a psychotic disorder. — Romeo Vitelli Ph.D.

Everyone Has Their Own Story


There are a number of reasons that influenced how these men and women end up being part of America’s homeless statistics. These include:

  • Skills learned while serving in the military aren’t transferable into the US civilian workforce
  • Mental Health Disorders such as Post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety and more. Although there are a number of resources available in terms of therapy and someone to talk to, accessing these resources is often not simple in terms of accessibility etc
  • Physical limitations and disabilities
  • Substance abuse

Each and every one of these men and women have their own story. Joe’s Story is one that will remind us that these people are soldiers who are proud. Many returned with physical and emotional wounds and rather battle the difficulty and challenges of being homeless than accept handouts.

Many PTSD symptoms are thought of as “typical” reactions to overwhelming events, but what separates a “typical” reaction from PTSD is the intensity and persistence of the symptoms; for example, they often get worse, rather than better with time. PTSD can severely interfere with normal life functioning such as the ability to hold down a job or maintain healthy relationships with friends and family, which can result in an increased risk of homelessness. — Robert T Muller Ph.D.

Let’s Not Forget Why We Should Remember Them


“Sitting in front of my fireplace, basking in it’s warm glow gives me time to reflect upon the sacrifices that it has taken for me to enjoy the security of a good home, in a safe environment. I can hear the soft whisper of the snow as it caresses my window and covers the ground outside in a scintillating display of sparkling lights under the full moon.

How many times have our service men and women watched this same scene from a foxhole, or camped in some remote part of the world. Thankful for the silence of that moment, knowing it won’t last long. Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He/she dresses in fatigues and patrols the world restlessly, ensuring that we can have this peaceful night.

Every day they give us the gift of this lifestyle that we enjoy, and every night they watch over us. They are warriors, angels, guardians, friends, brothers, fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers, forming a family that stretches back to the beginning of the country. So tonight when you go to bed say a prayer that God watch over those who watch over us, and thank them for their sacrifices, on and off the battlefield.

Pray that they have a peaceful night, and will be home soon with their families who also share their burden. Without them we would not have this moment.” ― Neil Leckman

What Can I Do?


  • Start in your own community and see what projects or programs there are to aid homeless veterans. Speak to local churches, soup kitchens, and shelters.
  • Take the time to share a meal with one of these veterans, you can also arrange for meal tickets with a local diner. You can also take the time to make up a plate for holidays such as Thanksgiving.
  • Volunteer your time and resources.
  • Research agencies and coalitions and make inquiries about how you an assist with homeless veterans
  • Donate to veteran organizations and charities

Give these men and women a voice. Enquire about becoming a Veterans Advocate.


Pros And Cons Of Becoming A Foster Parent

Adopting or fostering a child (or teenager) will take a great deal of support from your “village” and knowledge about attachment, trauma, and patience. — 

Deciding if you are ready to become a foster parent might be exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. Fostering a child is not an easy way of life. It is something that will change you and your perspective indefinitely. To consider your choices, here are some pros and cons of becoming a foster parent.

Cons Of Becoming A Foster Parent

Social Workers May Not Tell You Everything

As a foster parent, you have to learn how to provide for your child. This aspect of foster parenting applies to their physical, mental, and emotional health.

However, social workers may not give you complete information about the child’s needs. This lack of data can leave you confused and lost. Take note that it is crucial to inquire about everything. No bit of information is too trivial for your child’s sake.


Judgment From Other People

People are quick to judge, and you might receive unwanted attention. Questions, comments, and stares can test your strength. Aside from that, social workers will also check and see if you are suitable enough for childcare. The best way to deal with judgment is patience, a sense of humor, and determination that you want to care for the child.

Trust Goes Both Ways

Many children under foster care came from abusive families. To foster a child means you have to consider this fact. They might not trust you at first because they are in a foreign environment. You have to be patient in providing stability in their lives.

Leaving Your Home

In some cases, the child will leave their foster homes and go back to their birth parents. This situation varies at any given time. The level of trust you have with the child, their legal representative and their birth parent is essential. If this scenario occurs, you have to learn how to let go and hope for the best.


Families who are parenting children from hard places need to develop skills for how to parent children with trauma histories and attachment difficulties. — Jamie D. Aten Ph.D.

Pros Of Becoming A Foster Parent

Helping Children Who Need A Home

Irresponsibility runs rampant all around the world. As a result, some children are born in unfair situations. Becoming a foster parent allows you to change that. You will be able to provide a positive influence for children and be the change this world needs.

Aid Is By Your Side

You do not have to bear the responsibility all alone. Once you become a foster parent, there will be various resources and support for your family. There is training provided for learning how to raise a foster child. Monetary compensation is also given to help you get started. Depending on the state you live in, there will be benefits such as free grocery supplies and school lunch programs.


Foster Parenting Can Be Rewarding

There is no better feeling than witnessing your child grow under your care. Your unrelenting patience, determination, and love will come to fruition. When it does, it will give you a sense of accomplishment as a parent. The experience of foster parenting is unforgettable, and you will get rewarded for your efforts.

Researchers discovered the key ingredient to successful parenting is how well the parents work together and support each other as a couple. — Rick Nauert PhD

Being a foster parent is a blessing and an opportunity that will change you. Your view on life, love, and family are guaranteed to change. It will be worth it, despite the hardships. You will realize that at the end of this experience, you and your child have grown to become better.

Minding Mental Health

Hand In Hand

depression chat


In a recent blog, Homeless and Mental Health, it suggests that homelessness and mental health in most instances go hand in hand. Mental Health Disorders can create circumstances in which a person can become homeless and vice-versa, when being homeless can increase the instances of the individual developing a mental health disorder.

The homeless are defined by U.S. federal legislation as people who “lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.” Determining how many homeless people there really are remains a perennial problem. — Romeo Vitelli Ph.D.

Seeking out support and therapy for mental health disorders can be simple as typing in ‘depression chat rooms’ into a search engine to find support and therapy resources. This however is not the case amongst the homeless and transient communities with limited access to resources and technology which often results in these disorders going untreated.


Research Shows


  • ±33% of the homeless are people with serious untreated mental illnesses
  • The most common mental health disorders amongst the homeless are schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and schizoaffective disorder
  • More than 30% of people released from mental institutions became homeless within 6 months of their release
  • There has been a steady increase in homelessness in cities and small towns since the 70’s


The Link between Mental Health Disorders and Homelessness


To understand the link between mental health and homelessness, one must understand how the affects and disruptions mental health disorders can have of the daily lives of an individual with any one of many mental health disorders. The symptoms and side effects can include:


  • The inability to carry out basic essential self-care tasks such as hygiene and household management
  • The challenges associated with maintaining acceptable work performance or the inability to keep employment
  • Withdrawing and isolating themselves which results in not being able to maintain relationships with friends and family
    • Increased substance abuse or self-medicating which can lead to increased addictions which add their own set of challenges in addition to those presented by mental health disorders.

The nation’s homeless are typically incapable of paying for emergency and other services out of pocket, often having little to no income with which to fund exorbitantly expensive bills. Additionally, the homeless are usually without any sort of health insurance. — John Smith Ph.D.

Painting the Picture


A recent report by the National Alliance on Mental Illness indicates that:


  • Approximately 9.8 million adults in the U.S. experiences a serious mental illness that affects or interferes with one or more major life activities in a given year
  • Approximately 26% of the homeless adults staying in shelters are living with serious mental health disorders
  • 70% of the youth in juvenile facilities have at least one mental health condition
  • Less than half of adults in the U.S. with a mental health disorderhave received assistance from health services
  • Research shows that Mental illness was the third largest cause of homelessness for single adults


The Result of Lack of treatment


For the most part, people with untreated mental disorders have difficulty living alone or fitting in with families and communities. Often as a result of the signs, symptoms and effects of these disorders, these individuals are unable to participate in the simplest tasks self-care and self-preservation.


It is also not uncommon in some communities that people with mental disorders are shunned and face the challenges and difficulties of discrimination. As a result of the combined results of the symptoms and side effects of untreated mental disorders, many become homeless.

Many believe that homelessness is the result of lack of motivation, substance abuse, or poverty. But the reality is that homelessness is also the result of abuse, trauma, and mental illness among many other factors. —

There Is Always Hope




Excerpt from The Cost Of Not Caring


“Dorothy Edwards knows the despair and paranoia that cripple the mentally ill from seeking help and finding an apartment. For eight years, Edwards, 56, wandered the streets of Pasadena, Calif., sleeping in alleys, scouring Dumpsters for scraps of food and smoking meth to fend off a crushing depression. Her teeth were rotting, and sores broke out all her over body. She was sexually assaulted repeatedly and had her belongings stolen multiple times.


When things got truly bleak, Edwards would check herself into the psych ward of a hospital, only to be back on the streets within days. Various friends ravaged emotionally by the homeless life had flung themselves off the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena, known locally as “suicide bridge.” She considered using the bridge herself, she says.”

Best Parenting Apps This 2020


From apps that chart fetal development during pregnancy to those that track a newborn’s feeding and sleeping schedules, parents can follow and document virtually every aspect of their young one’s growth effortlessly — all on their smart phone or other devices. — Susan Newman Ph.D.

Technology is improving our lives in terms of organizing everything. It also includes the way you, as a parent, handle your whole family, especially your children.

Today, countless parenting applications can guide you in every element and aspect of being a parent. Here are some of the best parenting apps you can download on your devices this 2020.

Baby Connect

Being a parent of a baby is never easy. There are a lot of things running in your mind. These include when to feed them, what their sleeping schedule is, when their next doctor’s appointment is, and whose turn it is to take care of the baby.

With Baby Connect, it is now more convenient for you to organize both short-term and long-term tasks for your child. What’s good about this program is its simple and intuitive user interface.


Cozi is suitable for co-parenting needs. Different features make it stand out. For one, it allows both parents to share their calendars and photos and create to-do lists together. This strategy is a way for them to manage both their home and work tasks better.

What’s unique about Cozi is that it allows the users to store and share the recipes of their favorite meals. It is a handy tool for whoever is in charge of cooking in the household for a day.


Baby Sleep Sounds

Are you tired of carrying your baby and lulling them to sleep while having to sing to them at the same time? Well, you don’t have to worry anymore. Baby Sleep Sounds are one of the most unique and useful apps out there. It offers a variety of soothing sleep sounds and lullabies that you can play while making your baby sleep.

Aside from this, it also has a timer and a night light feature that you can set if you’re not beside your child.

Even when stress hormones are revving us up, calming takes place when another person is empathic, attuned, and non-judgmental. Unconsciously received signals slow our heart rate and activate the parasympathetic nervous system. — Tom Bunn L.C.S.W.


The Parenthood app is perfect no matter how old your child is. It has unique features that no other app offers, such as tracking developmental milestones, perusing expert tips for the whole family, and accessing educational resources. Its dashboard also allows you to connect with other user parents from whom you can ask advice.

Parenting Apart

Parenting Apart is an app created by a well-known divorce coach and parent educator, Christina McGhee. The program aims to focus on emotional issues for children and parents instead of tackling parenting practicalities.


Some of its most significant features include adjustment issues, emotional phases, challenges in parenting apart, and other tips and inspiring stories from the creator. Consider this as a digital robot where you can get professional advice at any time.

Getting up, dressed, or going to bed are some of the everyday routines covered. An animated hourglass offers upbeat instructions to the children followed by victory music when they beat the timer. — Robert A. Lavine Ph.D.


ChoreMonster is an app that makes chores more fun and more engaging. Its goal is to monitor the chores of the kids and reward them for completing both their daily and weekly assigned tasks.

The tracking process lets the kids earn points per chore completed. They can use the points they accumulate to claim prizes such as an hour of TV screen time, a pint of ice cream, or extra video game time.

Whether you’re a parent-to-be or a parent of toddlers and teens, these parenting apps will be your best companion in this crazy and challenging ride. So, what are you waiting for? Download now!

Issues To Address When Counseling Homeless Children

homeless children


It’s not overkill to assume that homeless children have been through more hardships than most adults. Whereas some kids are victims of various types of abuse, others have parents who need to look for a job or serve time in prison.

The foster system surely has no qualms about takingthe deprived youngsters in anytime. Despite that, the succession of events that led them there was still – for lack of a better word – appropriate for their age. They may end up having trauma, depression, intense aggression, inability to trust others, or all of the above.

Whether or not these problems manifest upon their arrival, it’s important to subject them to counseling. After all, these children have to let go of the things they experienced to recover. But they may not even be able to do sowithout the guidance of a therapist.

Below are the issues that counseling can address.

…the county of Orange receives over 2000 calls a month for suspected child abuse. At any given time there are approximately 2,700 children who are in out-of-home care. — Meredith Resnick L.C.S.W.


The wrongdoings that people can commit to children are so diverse. The most obvious ones include rape, torture, human trafficking, physical abuse, etc. But then again, it is also brutal to let kids see their father beat up their mother or become an accessory to a crime.

The kids who have such experiences in the past may wind up as criminals themselves. Or they may have zero self-confidence and go down with depression if a therapist doesn’t get through to them immediately.


homeless child


Many of the kids who need fostering also came from families that can’t provide even their fundamental needs. Rather than having three meals a day, for instance, they can only get one. Some may not go to school regularly because they prefer to do odd jobs to earn money than hone their intellect. Others who may need mental health care cannot see a psychiatrist too as their parents have no money or medical insurance to cover the fees.

Regardless of which scenario a homeless child can relate to, offering to counsel to them may enable them to use poverty as a motivation to change their fate.

Nearly one in three of these children have significant psychiatric problems during their time in foster care—especially those related to trauma and neglect that brought them into the system (McMillen JC et al, J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 2005;44(1):88– 95). — Glen R. Elliott, MD, PhD


Anunderlying reason why there are youngsters who end up homeless is that their parents abandoned them for good. They weren’t physically hurt, yet they got left on the street, a non-caring guardian, or at home by themselves.

Counseling is necessary at this point as well since an abandoned child may assume that they’re not meant to feel cared for and loved. Worse, they may desert their future family too, thinking that it’s normal.


counsel homeless children


In not-so-rare cases, the kids who are already in the system may experience harassment whenever they go to school. Some children tend to pick on their ill-fated classmates, especially once they find out that they are under foster care.

Although it is hard to predict if and when it will happen, speaking with a counselor about this mixed form of abuse can keep them from being bullied again.

The best foster and adoptive parents know that helping a child involves more than just “wanting to”—it involves sticking in there when times get rough. — Carmen Sample, MSW, LSW, CAC I

In the end, the counseling sessions will help the homeless children overcome their past so that they can dream of a bright future. They may not believe that the latter is possible if hatred, guilt, resentment, and violence still fill their heart and mind.


Bringing People Together



Your Transient Community




We often pass the homeless and transients on the street or in the parks in our communities and make assumptions about how they ended up there. The number of people affected by homelessness is expected to more than double by 2041.

Homelessness is often the result of untreated mental illness. About 7.7 American adults experience severe mental illness and many never receive proper treatment. — Támara Hill, MS, NCC, CCTP, LPC

There are a number of reasons that someone can end up homeless and as a member of that community, it is not your job to fix them or their problems but there are a number of things that you can do to bring people in the community together to offer support to those that need it.


It Is Their Story to Tell



Assuming the worst is not uncommon when it comes to people making assumptions about the homeless and transient communities. However, the truth is, everyone has a story and it is not always as bad as one tends to assume.

Women showed a slightly higher risk than men (7.6 percent vs. 5.4 percent), and the risk of homelessness also seemed strongly linked to age. — Romeo Vitelli Ph.D.

Happy Ending For The Homeless Man That Lost His Memory


“Charles Ray lost contact with his family in Fayetteville about 10 years ago. During that time, he suffered a stroke that affected his memory, making it impossible for him to recall their exact whereabouts. And eventually, he ended up homeless on the streets of Raleigh. It was that which landed him at the Oak City Outreach Center downtown. Shameeka Newton is a student intern with Catholic Charities studying to be a social worker. She came to know Charles while working at the center and learned his backstory.


“It started with one question. I said, ‘what does happy look like to you?’ and he said, basically he wants to see his family. He hasn’t seen his family in 10 years and he knows they’re worried about him,” she recalled.


Charles couldn’t remember much about their exact whereabouts, but he did give Shameeka his brother’s name, Eugene, from Fayetteville, so she used that to start searching online.” Read More Here


The fact that Shameeka took the time to speak to Charles is what made it possible to reunite him with his family. There is so much more the aiding the homeless than parting with a few dollars.


The Benefits of Talk Therapy


Taking the time to talk with an individual who is experiencing homelessness is one of the most rewarding gifts of respect and dignity that you can offer them. Doing something to help someone that is homeless is not always about handing over a few dollars. There are a number of ways to bring communities together and form action groups that can work together to tackle the support needed for homelessness in their communities. Share a meal or simply a beverage with someone, taking time out of your life to share that with someone who least expects it is one of the most rewarding acts of kindness you can share with another human being.

For most of us, walking by a homeless person who is curled up on a tattered blanket, asking for spare change seems like a common enough occurrence. Our reactions may vary, with some choosing to avoid eye contact (because it’s just plain easier), while others dig some change out of their pockets or purses. But most of us have no idea how these people turned out like this at all. — Robert T Muller Ph.D.

How Can I Help?



  • Give them a meal, buy the food or arrange with a local diner where you can pay in advance to give them a meal when they come around
  • RESPECT always, treat them with respect and dignity. It is not your job to fix them but you can encourage them by showing them they deserve better
  • Do not make assumptions, the people you are meeting can be there due to a number of reasons, the possibilities are endless.
  • Support ministries and shelters. This does not have to only mean monetary support, you can volunteer your time and skills
  • When possible, donate clothing, blankets and personal hygiene items such as soap, toothpaste, etc. It is best that these donations be made to active support groups in the communities.

How Fostering Makes A Difference To Your Married Life

According to Sharon Landis, MSW, with the County of Orange, California, the objective in foster care and adoptions is to strengthen families. However, she adds, “our primary goal is for family reunification, so we work to strengthen parents so that they can parent their children safely.” — Meredith Resnick L.C.S.W.

 The thought of becoming a foster parent right after tying the knot is very noble. There may be dozens or hundreds of homeless children who need a new home in every foster care facility across the country. If you can temporarily adopt one or two of them at a time, you are set to create a constructive experience for these kids.


The question is, will it make a big difference to your marriage as well?

See the likely effects of fostering to your married life below.

It Teaches You How To Budget Your Savings


Bringing a foster kid to your home means that you are willing to look after the child as if he or she is your own. You will feed and clothe them; you will send them to school without waiting for financial support from the government.

To well-off couples, the additional expenses won’t be a concern. For the regular working folks, however, it enables you to learn how to budget your money so that you can provide your foster child’s needs.

It Outlines Your Commonalities And Differences

The presence of a kid in the household allows the husband and wife to show facets of yourselves that never came up when you were still basically childless. Through fostering, you will understand if your views on parenting are the same. In case there are discrepancies, those will be obvious too.

The beauty of outlining such things is that you can immediately point out your lesser known commonalities and differences. In this manner, you’ll be able to retain the former and work out the latter for the benefit of your marriage and the family you may want to build.

The pros of kinship are that the caregiver is related to the child, and they probably feel a sense of family obligation to care for the child. They are probably known to that child, so moving to that household may not be a traumatic experience. — Jill Duerr Berrick, PhD

It Deepens Your Bond As A Married Couple

Fulfilling your role as foster parents may be challenging, especially if you take in a child who has a lot of angst to blow off. With you on their line of sight, they may snap at you a few times and act rebelliously no matter how much affection you give them.

During such occasions, the only rock you can hold on to is your spouse. While you may always return the kid to the system, you need your husband or wife beside you at all times to make fostering a success.

It Readies You For A Life With Kids


Living under the same roof as a foster child gives you an idea of what it will be like once you have kids. There will be moments in which their happiness becomes more important than yours. You may get upset or feel joyful with their words too, depending on their mood.

The thing is, you won’t realize what all those instances feel like if it’s only you and your significant other in the house. You may not even consider bearing kids until they came to your life and let you take care of them. Thus, it’s a plus for newlyweds to register for foster care immediately.

Renowned psychiatrist and researcher Daniel Siegel (1999) noted, “The care that adults provide nurtures the development of essential mental tools for survival. These attachment experiences enable children to thrive and achieve a highly flexible and adaptive capacity for balancing their emotions, thinking, and empathic connections with others”. — Blake Griffin Edwards, MSMFT, LMFT

The changes brought by fostering, of course, are not always positive. You will practically go through the ups and downs that regular parents experience when raising children. There may be times as well when the foster kid may act up, and you won’t know at first how to handle it. But the more you stay in the system, the more you understand the youngsters and yourselves. Isn’t that a vital ingredient for a healthy marriage?

Find out if you are eligible for fostering today.

A Psychologist’s Advice: Discipline Your Child

The role of every parent is not an easy one because it always carries with it several problems and challenges. No matter how great you are as a parent, there will always come a time when you will feel lost about what you are going through. On top of all the things that you must do, other people expect you to be perfect at being a parent. Because of this, you may feel a lot of anxiety and stress. Do not fret for there are tons of options that you can do to beat all those negative emotions. In this article, we are going to share the smart ways on how to make it happen through the advice we received from an excellent psychologist.

Discipline is a touchy topic for many, especially because it requires so much from parents: persistence, tolerance (in the face of loud, out-of-control feelings), stepping into the unknown (a given), and faith (that discipline will work!). — Ben Ringler, MFT



Before we go into the details, we want to remind every parent like you that you play a crucial or vital role in the upbringing of your children. You must learn how to take responsibility in fulfilling all your duties because one wrong move can alienate your kids from you or even make them grow as rebels in society. You must learn how to give the right amount of love and understanding to your kids so that they can also cultivate a lifestyle that is full of happiness and greatness.


The primary focus of today’s article is concerning the significance of helping your child become a responsible member of the community. Make sure that you see to it that your children are highly disciplined at all times. Failure to do any of these acts can lead to severe problems in your part. Check the list below to find the methods on how to discipline a child:


Keep Your Cool


The initial step that you must do is to learn how to control yourself when it comes to dealing with your child. Take note that he is still young, which means that he does not know a lot of things in this world. You cannot expect him to function well if he can see that you can get out of control when you are mad. The best and ideal thing to do is to compose yourself at all times, especially during the moments when your little one seems to test your patience. Remind yourself that the more you calm yourself, the easier it would be for him also to calm himself.



 Consider the origins of the word “discipline.” It comes from the word “disciple,” which, of course, is a person who receives instruction from another person. Parents who have what I call a “punishment mentality” don’t teach their children to make positive changes in their behavior. — Jeffrey Bernstein Ph.D.

Use Positive Reinforcement


Another thing or idea that you may want to consider is to use the psychology of positive reinforcement wherein you will reward your child whenever he does something good. Make sure that the ultimate reward is commensurate with the good deed that he has done. Do not give something that can be overwhelming as it can send a negative signal to him. He will end up confused to the point that he will be clueless on what to do next. If you still feel that he has not improved through this method, it is best to change your strategies every now and then. Keep in mind that several experts have already concluded that this method works as long as you know how to apply it systematically.


Withdraw Privileges At Home


Whenever your child does something terrible, be sure that he also gets punished for it. Of course, you must not punish him physically or emotionally as it can affect your child’s mental health or state. What you must do is to slowly take away some of his rights and privileges so that you can teach him a lesson. For example, you can restrict the usage of gadgets at home whenever he talks back at you or whenever he does something outrageous to other people. Through this simple act, he will be reminded that what he did was wrong. Since something special was taken from him as a punishment, there is a good chance that he refrain himself from making the same mistakes.


Communicate With Your Kid


One of the things that many parents fail to do is to establish a real and positive communication line among their kids. Most adults assume that they already know their children, which is why they no longer feel the need to check up on the latter. If you think similarly, then there is something wrong with you. At this point, it is imperative to point out the fact that communication between parents and kids must be effective at all times. If you noticed something good about your child, make sure to let him know about it. Conversely, if you discovered something negative, let him know why it was erroneous.



People don’t just stumble upon good parenting. Parenting well, like any other skill in life, is something we learn not just through what we were taught when we were growing up, but by expanding our strengths and skills when we become parents ourselves. — Ben Martin, Psy.D.

Be a responsible parent starting today!


Blessed With A Heart That Cares



What does it mean to care? Is fostering a child a wise decision? Some people are blessed with a good heart that they embrace other people in their lives, but what comes into their mind when opting to foster a child? We may think it is simple. However, for some, they feel more than just care. They feel cursed for having to feel the pain and suffering of children who have to go through not having a family. Yes, some people do more than just care. They have the heart that bleeds for others, and they cope with this feeling by opting to help, and deciding to foster a child is one of the ways.

One of the reasons that foster homes are not always healthy environments for their wards might be that foster parents have a financial as well as an altruistic motivation. — Susanne Babbel MFT, PhD

Things To Remember Before Opting To Foster Care:



  • Fostering a child makes someone feel great. It is for a fact that helping is something we need to do to satisfy that sense of fulfillment inside us. There is a particular feeling of satisfaction when we know we can do good to others, and opting to foster care is something more than just giving temporary help. It is something that may create a difference in a child’s life.

Imagine if you didn’t have the emotional constitution to live with knowing that the little one you were attempting to adopt could, at any moment, be given back to his family of origin? And not feeling happy about that and feeling guilt over that. This was the downside, at least to some adoptive families. — Meredith Resnick L.C.S.W.

  • Opting to foster care has a risk. It exposes you to the feeling of being emotionally attached to a person you are not sure to have permanently. Although there is a process for this where you would be eligible for full custody of a child, it doesn’t ascertain anything. It would still make you undergo through a series of emotional and mental threat such as depression.


  • It is challenging to take care of a child whom you haven’t nurtured. He may not be able to follow through your lifestyle. His values may not be by your standards, and you must be ready for this. Most of us think that children are all adorable, but we may not anticipate that they could already be dealing with personal issues which are hard to address. We must prepare to be stronger and not to quit just because it didn’t turn out to be a journey to wonderland.

Complex trauma often results in chronic anxiety—internalized as depression, externalized as defiance, or both. Children may, consequently, withdraw or explode as they navigate difficult emotional territory, and they need safe relationships where they can test the bounds of trust as they navigate a path forward through grief, anger, and healing. — Blake Griffin Edwards LMFT

  • Some people opt to foster care because they need it emotionally. If you have the same reasons, you must understand that the desire to fulfill the child’s emotional needs outweighs yours. Remember that the goal of providing a foster home is to make a child feel loved and that he has a family who wants to see him happy. It is not about what he can do for you but what you can provide him in all aspects – physical, emotional, and mental.




Foster care may be simple, but it goes beyond the provision of shelter, food, and other physical needs. It requires you to have the heart to desire nothing but the betterment of the child. Remember that the moment he would have with you is something that will be a part of him forever. It is way beyond that brief time he might spend with you as it might help him form his perspective. He might live a life based on what he felt when he was with you.