“Janice” is now in her mid-forties and does skilled labor for a living. She characterized her childhood and current situation as below poverty/poor, despite her job. She was in foster care from ages 5-14 and counted 10 placements during her nine years in the system. She spent that time in foster families, juvenile detention, and an “other” arrangement(s).

She thought she saw her family about five times during those nine years. Most of those visits were probably when she was quite young, because when asked if she thought that was often enough, she responded, “I don’t know. I just wanted my mommy.”

When asked about the worst parts of her fostering experience, and how the system failed her, she said, “Please. It was all bad. My caseworker is the only one I trust. I was beaten, raped, abused. I watched my brother beaten. I’m too sad now. I know [my] foster parent would come to my room every night and stick his tongue in my ear. Next night is was his dick. I had to go pee but was too scared to leave the room, so peed on the floor.”  She told her social worker at them time – and that worker did nothing.

She added that she knows that there is some good that can happen in foster care, but also believes we need to “punish the bad” –like her unresponsive caseworker and the foster parent that abused her. “I was a little girl that loved to sing.”


 

Insights:

I don’t really have anything to add here. I’m with Janice. We need to punish the bad, and find the good.