Foster Care: Instead of saying "I can't do it, I would get too attached…"

There is nothing that stings a foster momma's heart more 
than hearing the words….


I know this phrase is used in a sincere way, but as we are already in the business
of getting our hearts broken with good-byes, we don't need our hearts broken
from a comment that eludes that we, as foster parents, don't get attached.

So instead of chastising the comment, I'm here to offer alternatives to that comment.

How about using the following phrases instead to a foster mom:

'I could never do foster care, 
I'm afraid I wouldn't be brave enough 
for the good-bye that would eventually come.'

'I could never do foster care because 
I don't think I could recover from 
the pain that would come with the 
attachment and the goodbye.'

'I don't think I would ever have the courage 
to do what you are doing.' 

These sentiments state truth and also acknowledge
 the special and often times painful journey of a foster family.

I had a lady the other day on the phone tell me 
that she just didn't think she could do foster care because 
her heart would be ripped from her chest every time
she had to say goodbye to the child.

Through tears, I tried telling her 
that my heart has been ripped out of my chest already a few times, 
most recently two days ago when I had to watch two little girls 
that could have easily been part of our family 
move to another foster family for long-term placement. 
I could hardly get the words out because my heart 
was still breaking from that most recent good-bye.

Foster care does take a leap of faith.
It requires bravery and courage and a willingness
 to have our hearts broken into a million pieces.
Ripped out of our chest.
Time and time again.

But the journey is so worth it.
The service of love provided for however length of time…

The lessons our families learn about ourselves, sacrifice and service
are worth every minute of heartache that follows the goodbye.

And I will tell you…the recovery comes.
Some times quicker than other times.
But it comes.
The pain lessens. The heartbreak softens.
I believe this is through our savior Jesus Christ that this
pain is healed. That my heart is pieced back together.
And then are prepared and strengthened
 to do it all over again.

Because these children deserve this love. This chance to be loved.
To be comforted. To be safe. To be fed, hugged and loved.

And as foster families, we are all ready to pray that you can find that 
bravery, that courage, that peace in knowing the pain is worth it.

And we ask that you pray for us for the same.
And be kind to our hearts by using the alternates above instead of saying….

'I'd get too attached.'

And dare I say, if you think you will get too attached 
then you are exactly who these children need
if the timing is right for you or your family.


  1. Oh that last sentence! Getting attached and being loved unconditionally is the VERY things these kids need when coming into care! Our case workers used to say we were getting too attached and I felt like saying, "only because we don't have a heart of stone like yours??" Of course I didn't say that! Very wonderful post!

  2. This is an amazing post. Thank you for sharing. I hear that phrase anytime I mention that in the future I plan to have foster children in my home... and you're right, because I will get too attached and love those kids like they're my own is exactly why I want/need to do it.

  3. I appreciated this so much! We foster (we are not looking to adopt) and I have been surprised by how bugged I am by some of the comments I've heard. At times, I have felt that people think I must be hard hearted for loving these babies knowing they will not be staying with us. I've surprised myself with how hurtful this is to me. I'm certain people don't intend it that way but it's how it feels. I appreciate there are others who feel as I do! I love your suggestions of alternate things to say!

  4. Thank you so much for picking my card as one your winners from the teddies challenge, it is such an honour.
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  5. I ended up on your blog because I saw pix of beautiful goodies you once had for sale. Then I found this post and see that even more beautiful than your goodies is your heart. Thank you for your words - we have (and are) considered fostering and reading your words of faith allowing Jesus to heal your heart with each break really speaks to my heart.

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