Usually when a parent's rights are terminated, the social worker arranges a "good bye" visit with the parent(s) and the child(ren).
It doesn't look like mom is going to be around for this to happen and that is really unfortunate. I would talk to his social worker and asks her ways to deal with the inevitable anger. He is going to be angry at his mom, at the system and probably at you and his dad. It sounds kind of preverse but he will take out his anger on the two adults he trusts the most..you and his dad.
Usually, when a child is adopted via foster care, family and individual therapy is highly suggested if not mandatory. I would suggest doing it becuase it will give him a safe place to vent all this anger and confusion because even though he logically understand that he is in a stable place and that mom has to go prison, he also is going to feel guilty (he loves you more than her) or anger towards her(why is she such a screw up) or anger towards dad(why did he divorce her, if he has stayed she wouldn't have done this) to embarrassment and shame.
Before you do anything talk to his social worker and get suggestion and talk to a therapists. You have to remember that all anger is based in fear.
And then set him down, both of you, and tell him in a very straight forward manner. He probably already knows more than you think. He has probably already figured out that he is going to be living with you guys permanantly. He just needs to hear that. He needs to know that he is safe and that he can come to you guys and talk to either of you individually or together at any time. And then no matter what, no matter how tired you are, do it. It won't last forever. Only until he feels safe again.
The same with the anger. It can get a little tiring but he needs you to bounce his anger off of.
Also, don't take it personally if he goes through a stage where he makes up a fantasy mom. His real mom isn't in prison. She is off on a covert mission. Or his "real" mom is beautiful, super smart, a great cook etc. This is a defense mechanism. No matter what, do not ever talk bad about mom in front of him especially if he is gagging on your food, letting it fall out of his mouth and saying something like "my real mom cooks better than you." As hard as it might be to not say "you mom was a total screw up" don't do it. He needs to believe this in order to process it. Eventually, he will see her for what she is and if you bite your tongue, no matter how hard, he will see you for you are---his real mom.
lol sorry for the dissertation. My advice is simple. Talk to the social worker see if they can get a goodbye visit or at least a phone call, then talk to a therapists and social workers, and then sit him down and tell him matter of factly. He will take his cues from you. If you are embarrassed or unsure, he will be. So sit him down, tell him, and then reassure him that he is very loved and that you and his father are so happy to have him living with you guys. Don't tell him he is lucky to be living with you but that you are lucky to have him and can raise him.
Foster mom for 7 years
· 9 years ago