Sunday, April 15, 2007

Respite weekend

Jackie spent the weekend here again. This time it was entirely because she wanted to. She is turning 18 in just a couple of weeks and is incredibly anxious about what she needs to do.

And one of the other girls has been running away and generally being difficult. Mandy said she just needed some peace and quiet. So I gave it to her. I let her sleep in as late as she wanted. She spent most of her time in her room talking on her cell phone.

She didn't want to go home, but Mandy convinced her to come back. Tomorrow all the girls will be at school and Jackie will be able to spend the day with the adults. (Jackie just has to take two more GED tests, which are scheduled, so there isn't anywhere she has to go except work). Everyone is agreed though that she can come back here as much as she likes until she moves.

She's holding together better than a lot of kids right as they approach emancipation.

Jackie isn't in the permanency program that I work for. Mandy takes teenage girls who need a high level of structure because of behavioral issues. Jackie has done really well there. No one has talked to her about the posssibility of staying in care past her birthday. Mandy is giving her some time to get her living situation worked out, but she is expected to move as soon as she reasonably can.

This isn't the way it should be for these kids.


  1. Somebody's helping her plan, right? Her worker is helping her, right?

  2. Yes. They are. She is getting signed up for housing assistance. She has all the paper work in to the program that will pay for her to go to cosmotology school. The plan is all worked out. Now all she has to do is follow it. You know, as long as she doesn't make any of those pesky mistakes 18-year-olds tend to make, she will be fine.

  3. It's so sad to see these kids basically thrown back on the garbage heap. Sure, some succeed and I hope your Jackie is one of them but so many fail.

  4. Until I became involved in foster care I had no idea how many kids are basically just tossed at the end of their stint. It's criminal, really.

    I hope it works out for Jackie. Sigh.

  5. The young man we took on emergency respite wants to stay. And we are fine with that. But then we got a message today saying the rest of the team has "issues" with the placement. Turns out they want him to go to independent living instead of blowing through another family. We would rather he try this so he has a connection when he ages out. It feels punitive to not let him try.


Comments will be open for a little while, then I will be shutting them off. The blog will stay, but I do not want either to moderate comments or leave the blog available to spammers.