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Fostering Blog | Fun Weekend

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A nice peaceful weekend in the household. No phone calls, no stress and plenty of laughter and enjoyment. On Friday evening James (name changed) and I went to do some grocery shopping and we bumped into Paige and her Mum.

James was delighted to see her and they went for a wander themselves while I chatted to her Mum and then finished my shopping. When I got to the tills James was standing there with a big soppy grin on his face. We got home, via the chippy, and sat and watched TV while eating. There was a Star Wars film on so we watched that.

James went off to bed at about 11 and I wasn’t long after that, I think the stress of the week was catching up. On Saturday James did his homework while I pottered about in the kitchen and did some washing. Once he had finished we sat and watched the football on the TV which was fun and then had something to eat.

We then watched the next match and then we decided to watch the boxing. So it was pretty much a ‘lads’ day consisting of sports and food. On Sunday we went to the garden centre, just for something to do, and we went to look at the aquarium supplies as James had mentioned he wanted one and I’d always fancied one myself so we had a look at the tanks and the fish.

Anyway £250 later we left with a large tank, some gravel and other bits to put in the tank. The chap in the shop said that we should fill the tank and let it settle for a few days before putting fish in.

So we got home, unpacked the tank and its stand and positioned it in a few different places before we settled for a position in the dining room. We then put the gravel in followed by the water and something to help prepare the water for putting the fish in. That was all we could do at that stage. James had assured me that he would undertake cleaning duties for the tank.

The shop had given us a brochure about how to look after the tank and what fish to choose so James spent the next couple of hours engrossed in that while I put the Sunday roast on.

There were three football matches on, that afternoon, so that the rest of our day sorted. We sat and watched the games punctuated by dinner at about 2pm. James phoned Paige after the second game and I took the opportunity to load the dishwasher and sort James’ clothes out for the week. After he finished his phone call we watched the last game and the James went off to have a bath and sort his bag out. He was in bed at 10 and I hit the hay about 11 after just updating my diary.

It had been a fun weekend with no unpleasant phone calls and, more importantly, a happy couple of days for James. What would the week bring?

A Simply Fostering Foster Carers Blog.

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Fostering Blog | Parental Failings

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After the drama of the week we had a few days of peace. There were still number withheld calls coming through to James’ (name changed) phone so we altered his settings so that number withheld calls were blocked. I can imagine that this caused Mum to curse me a little more.

On Friday evening I got a call from Paige’s Dad. He was a little concerned about the situation regarding James’ Mum and, obviously, didn’t want Paige being caught up in any unpleasantness. I reassured him that everything was in hand and that there was no need to be concerned.

James had already said that Paige was concerned how her Dad would react to the situation so I had been expecting the call. I took James over to Paige’s house on Saturday so he could have some time with her and her family, just to remind them about what a nice lad he was.

I had an online training course to do so, having the house to myself, I sat and did it. I went over to pick James up, later that evening, and we came home and watched football. The evening had gone well and James was in a good frame of mind.

On Sunday I ordered McDonalds breakfast and we had that before settling down for more football. We had quite a long chat about Mum. James recalled that she once held down a normal job and was a ‘normal’ Mum. Mum worked as an Accountant. She had qualified and had a good job with a Construction company.

They had a ‘proper’ life and had holidays abroad and a full cupboard of food. Mum had met this guy who had asked to go out with her and they started a relationship. James could remember the man smoking funny smelling roll ups and that he remembered seeing Mum smoking one. After that things started going downhill pretty quickly.

Mum lost her job due to poor attendance and money suddenly became an issue. The man started spending more time at the house and became quite abusive towards James, slapping him on a number of occasions. When he told Mum she didn’t believe him. Then one day the Police arrived at the house.

The man had been caught shoplifting, with Mum, and he was taken off to the station. A few days later a Social Worker had called at the house to talk about James and why he wasn’t attending school. A few days later James got home from school to find Mum battered and bruised.

The man had given Mum some drugs and she couldn’t pay for them so he had beaten her. James wanted to call the Police but Mum refused. Mum’s life now revolved around drugs and getting money for drugs. There was little or no time for James or the simple things like food and clothes washing.

I felt so sorry for him having to witness all that he had and it amazed me that he had turned out as he had so far. He went off to bed at 10 and I sorted out everything for the week. I hoped that we could have a nice quiet peaceful week, we needed it.

A Simply Fostering Blogging Foster Carer.

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Fostering Blog | Lockdown Schooling

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I really dislike this whole lockdown palaver! I actually feel quite jealous of James (name changed) going off to school every day and being able to see his friends.

His football was called off on Saturday and none of the shops were open so we just went chilled on Saturday, watched sport, played Play-station and ate too much. So on Sunday we decided to go for a long walk somewhere, just to get some exercise and stretch our legs.

There were lots of people out and, although the weather wasn’t great, we had a really nice walk talking about all sorts of positive stuff, including Christmas. Sunday evening we sat and watched the last round of the golf. I haven’t quite converted James to golf yet but I am working on it. So a quiet, relaxed, chilled weekend for us both.

James went off to school Monday morning in a good mood as he would be seeing his girlfriend, Paige, and he was very excited about that. I went off to get some shopping and was half way around when my phone went off. I recognised the number as James’ school.

The school asked if I could go there straight away as there had been an ‘incident’. I dumped my trolley with a poor unsuspecting member of staff and left the store to drive to the school. On arrival I was sent to the Head masters office where I saw James sat there looking very distressed.

Apparently James was walking from the f the bus stop to school went a car pulled up alongside him. In the car were Mum and two men, one of whom he recognised. Mum had got out of the car with the man that James had recognised. Mum then asked James if he had any money on him, fortunately James hadn’t.

Mum then asked if they could take him back to mine to get some money off of me, but James said no. The other man in the car then got out and starting arguing with James’ Mum, saying that she had said that she would be able to get money from James and that they owed him money.

Fortunately one of James’ teachers was driving past and stopped to ask what was going on. James went and got in the teachers car while Mum and the two men got in their car and drove off.

Poor James was petrified. It was suggested that I took him home and I agreed. We got home and James changed out of his uniform whilst I called the Social Worker. The Social Worker was absolutely horrified, she said she would clear her diary, that afternoon, and come over to see him.

I also called my Supervising Social worker who said they would come over too. They both arrived at about 2.30 and James told them exactly what happened.

He had literally just finished when his mobile went off, it was Mum, so he ignored it. Shortly afterwards there was a noise to indicate a message had been left. He put it on loudspeaker and we listened to Mum saying that she owed money for drugs and didn’t have any.

She wanted James to lie to me to get his hands on some money which they would come over to collect or, if he couldn’t get any cash, to take something of value and she would sell it to raise the money. James was disgusted, as we all were.

A Simply Fostering Blogging Foster Carer.