Fostering Blogs

The wrong crowd

Emma’s fostering Blog

The wrong crowd

Sophie came to us at 8 she was polite, courteous and eager to please, sometimes she was reluctant to think for herself, she needed additional boundaries to keep her focused.

She was happy and a pleasure to be with, until she started hanging out with a particular group when she started secondary school, she had nice friends but they seemed to disappear and now she was with a new group of seemingly not so nice friends….

It’s been quite a journey over the last couple of years and as a Foster carer I have in some way felt that I must have let her down, perhaps I missed something, I don’t know. It just started out of the blue when she was 13, as if she went to bed and actually changed overnight, at first lots of small issues mainly lying, then coming home later, then not coming home at all.

It seemed I was forever ringing duty to report her missing and the endless visits from the police.  At home she seemed to be distancing herself from us by spending lots of time alone in her bedroom.  At times there was a musky smell from her and so I suspected she was doing drugs.

Casually I discussed the pros and cons of using marijuana as a teen but it just carried on, so I had to get help because Items started going missing in her room; nice things that eventually I found out were being sold to fund her addiction to cannabis.

How she has changed, being verbally aggressive and intimidating towards me and a teacher at School, this followed by months of truanting which has led to her being put in a pupil referral unit due to extreme behavioural problems.  Sophie has such low self-esteem, and she finds it hard to fit in as she never feels good enough and my heart sinks every time.  She is now getting professional help.

Her teacher told me that Sophie has a lot of potential and had recently demonstrated some good skills, and is capable of making good progress, but she does not maintain acceptable standards of behaviour, and this has had an adverse effect upon her learning. She can be selective about what lessons she works well in and is sometimes reluctant to try new challenges, and this reflects only on her confidence and behaviour and not her ability.

If only Sophie would focus on her behaviour and achievement as she has tremendous potential. We have put in really strong boundaries to help her but it’s up to her to want to achieve this.

My thoughts are I am still hanging in there, one day at a time, small goals and all the time looking to celebrate any small achievement, working on the good relationship we once had. I know it’s going to be a long journey…

Emma – A Blogging Foster Carer – I Love What I Do!