Friday, October 22, 2010

Helen's coming to visit (UPDATE)

A social worker will be dropping Helen (Gary's sister) off at my workplace sometime today. Helen is taking an on-line driver's education course and she will work on that while I sit in my office trying to make a dent in the 20 hours of midterm grading I have to do.

When we were called I said I had to ask Roland. He was napping but I woke him. His response was, "Huh? oh, yeah. sure."

I told Gary that Helen was coming. His response was, "But I have plans for this weekend!"

"So. You always have plans. Do what you planned. She's not coming to visit you."

"But I TOLD YOU that I feel obligated to be with her if she's here."

"Sweetie, I mean this in the most loving way possible: get over it."

He pouted, but I ignored it.

Helen is coming over because "she and her foster parents need a little break from each other." That could mean exactly that, or it could mean that the placement is in trouble and they are contemplating a move. I woke up wondering what I would say if Helen asked if she could move in with us.So I asked myself, what would in a situation in which a member of my extended family was living with a member of her family and wanted to move.

If she asks, I'll tell her that she never has to worry about a place to go. We are family and she isn't going to be homeless, ever. I'll also tell her that one of the bad things about foster care is that it tends to teach kids that you solve family problems by changing families. She has been with this family for a year. She is able to go to the high school where her friends and the special program she is doing are.Family isn't easy. Sometimes we all want to run away, but that isn't how it works. She can come visit us for a break or just because whenever she wants, but I expect her to work things out with her current family.

I really think this is best, and that is the plan I am supporting. My job is to help her make it work, not offer her an escape route because she is quarreling with her family.

But if she needs a home? She is a part of our family too. We would do what we need to do.

Although I do want to tell you that when I think of that I don't have the excited feeling that I used to have when I contemplated previous kids. It is more, as Thorn said once, "I don't really feel up to it, but if that's what she needs, we will do it."

UPDATE: Helen is here, doing homework at the work study station. She has piles to do and will probably be busy at it all weekend.

And her placement is over, as in disrupted. She has things with her for the weekend, and her worker is trying to find her a new place now. We have not been officially asked. We may not be because it is understood that it would be better for her to stay in her school district, near her church, etc. There is of course the little issue of her not yet being in the program I am licensed in. (My file is closed, but until May I can be re-licensed by having it opened.) I did however tell the worker who brought her that Andrew's room is empty until Thanksgiving.

I have decided that I am not going to ask Roland if we should offer for her. I will just let him know what the situation is and let him do the math.

I expect that if they can't find a home in her school district, they will ask us.

1 comment:

  1. Of course, the moment you think you are done, you get sucked back in. LOL Same thing happened to us over 4 months ago. They were coming for a bit until the GGma could heal her broken hip. We now are adopting them. Well, if our county would ever get their crap together and reopen our home. It seems it is perfectly ok to let them live here while they putz around.

    I hope everything works out for the best for all of you.


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