(The following were taken from submissions to the FFTA essay contest.)
Circumstances Leading to Foster Care
NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, and watching MTV, that’s what normal adolescents do. For me it was babysitting, watching my Mother get messed up on drugs, worrying about food was also an issue. We also had to always worry about when the cops were going to show up.
Rose, Age 15
Why? Mother Why? You were so good and truthful to your children. This man who is he? Who does he think he is? He is full of jeopardy and danger. Why him? He is not fond of you, obviously. Why did you let him put your children in this despicable situation? You and only you ran back every time. Why?
Denise, Age 15
I decided that it would be best if I went to live with my grandma over the summer, so that we could think about things and hopefully work them out. My mom asked me a million times if I was sure it was what I wanted to do. I thought it was.
Beth, Age 17
My life is not very good sometimes. I wish I were someone else. I tried finding my way out of life, but I know I would hurt the people that really love me.
Sandy, Age 16
MeMe, Age 17
I was really mad but most of all hurt that she would just say I love you and good-bye.
Kitten, Age 17
Mother meant the whole world to me and there wasn’t anything I could do to get her back. It was like I had lost everything.
Lucie, Age 19
I felt so bad for my mom and I constantly felt like it was my fault because I couldn’t do anything to stop it.
PoemGirl, Age 17
I don’t remember if I was sad or happy.
Kevin, Age 11
I felt so disappointed and heartbroken. I hated my life.
Brittany, Age 13
How does it feel to be a Foster Child? It’s like being in a great world of your own.
MARK, Age 12
I felt very sad and I knew I could not do anything about it. I had to get over it. I know how it feels to be pushed around. I have been there.
Einstein, Age 11
You feel like, “Wow, my mom loves drugs and not me.” For months, I cried myself to sleep because of this…. My blood, my love, my life, my mother was gone.
Assilem, Age 13
The placements did not work because in my heart I felt alone but in my mind I felt grown…. The only problem in the home was me. There I was almost thirteen and hated the world. I could not trust anyone. I didn’t want to trust anyone. How could I trust someone? I had to protect myself from hurt. The only way I could do that was to guard my heart…. I messed up four homes because of this.
Flower Girl, Age 18
I know how it feels to be put in a foster home…. I know it’s hard but think of it this way! You get a chance to start over. Try to fix anything you did wrong!
Star, Age 14
Agitating they are! They’re always there when you least expect them. They slither upon you like an emotional python. I am talking about difficult times…. Difficult times are what everybody goes through. You should take control of these times and have a good life.
Kitt, Age 12
It’s surprising to look back at my life and think of all the times I wanted to end it, but I’m still here. I try to look to the future for comfort when I’m feeling down….
PoemGirl, Age 17
It’s not unusual for people to experience difficult times. Some are easier to overcome than others some pierce the heart indefinitely and some pass by quickly. The most important key is surviving them, and grow smarter from each one. I’ve been through a lot because of this one person and it amazes me to know that JUST ONE PERSON could cause so much pain…. I’ve learned a lot from what I’ve been through. I’m a whole new person…. This is the most difficult thing I’ve ever been through but I’m still here. I see myself as a survivor, striving to live and be happy, I’m almost there.
L’il Moma, Age 17
The best advice I have from one foster child to another is that you never give up…. Never think that you are worthless.
Jane, Age 10
FAITH IS A FRAGILE THING…. Faith is what keeps children going on.
Mark, Age 12
….at least I know that I’ve tried my hardest and have gone over so many bumps in the road and have made it through the tough times and through what I thought was impossible. That is all I can do.
Poohbear, Age 17
What makes me weak, and I deal with it, makes me stronger. Every foster kid should know that.
Sandy, Age 16
I will be proud when I grow up. I will be a hero…. I love me.
Stephanie, Age 9
I have been in foster care for 1 year, in that year I felt like my world had come to an end and that I had no meaning in my life, but with the help from people that worked with me I have found out differently…. without them I wouldn’t have come to the conclusion that I am special and that I am a person who deserves to be loved.
Beatrice, Age 16
Now, for the good times: I am finally getting to be a boy…. I am getting to start a new life as being able to do kid’s stuff like I am supposed to do.
Pokemon 2, Age 12
I am a foster kid and I am good…. Do not forget Susanna.
Susanna, Age 10
I think that when you become an adult it’s just like a toddler you’re a caterpillar, and when you’re a kid you’re a cocoon and finally you become an adult which would be a butterfly.
Jesse, Age 9
….we should all make our foster care family a possibility.
MeMe, Age 17