Friday, July 11, 2008

The new state worker

We had our meeting with Gary's new state worker and I really like him. He is part of a team that just deals with teens who are expected to age out of care.

The previous worker wanted Gary's dad to visit Gary in the visitation room under her supervision before she approved unsupervised visits. This wasn't going to happen. Sadly it had turned into a power struggle between the worker and his father, and Gary was the one who got hurt.

The new is fine with the agency worker setting up a dinner with us, Gary, his dad and possibly the agency worker. If the agency worker and Roland and I all feel like it would be wise for Gary to have unsupervised visits, that will be okay with him. When the worker found out that by "unsupervised visits" Gary was thinking about going fishing, walking and talking at the park, or going out to lunch he really relaxed. He (the state worker) thought Gary wanted over-night visits with his dad.

The worker is even okay with his father signing permission forms that I cannot sign. If Gary wants to take Judo, Gary can get either the worker or his dad to sign. Just so long as he knows about it, that is okay with him. Of course there was the implication that the worker had and might use the power to over-ride these decisions if he felt it was necessary.

The worker is also supportive of the agency worker setting up visits with his sister. Again, Gary doesn't even want permission to spend a night or weekend at their grandparents where the sister is currently living. He just wants to be able to meet her at the mall or something.

The new worker told Gary that he had not read his file yet on purpose. He wanted to get to know Gary for himself. I liked that, and I think Gary did too. It did create some awkward moments like when the worker said how important it was that young people learn about certain realities, "I've seen too many young men slip up and end up under the supervision of juvenile justice until they are twenty-one. That's a long time if you are sixteen." To which Gary of course responded, "It's longer if you were twelve."

All in all though I think it was a very positive experience. I liked him.


  1. I'm really glad that it is working out that way.

  2. A good worker can make a huge difference.

  3. Oh good, you both deserve a good worker, I am glad to hear that.

  4. Still loving your blog! The closest I have come to fostering so far is providing childcare at the county foster parent association meetings, but I still see it as a part of my life sometime in the future, and am learning a lot on here.

  5. Sounds like I love the new worker too! :)


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