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Old 07-09-2009, 08:50 AM
Aquaman87 Aquaman87 is offline
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Adopting/fostering older teens...

What are the experiences of those fostering/adopting teens 13 & older? Is there time to bond before they leave the system or do most fade away soon after their 18th birthday?

I've worked with teens for 20 years and I teach 13/14 yo's. Kids in the foster care system have generally been forced to grow a bit faster than some of their peers. The first half of 8th grade is fun as the kids are generally still open to adult interaction. By the end of the year, their peers become closer as they feel closer to adulthood themselves and crave independence.

When that natural drifting away from adult relationships occurs, how well do older teens bond with families? Many seem to have attachment issues or take time to generate trust. I've only heard horror stories and warnings about older teen adoption/foster experiences and have shied away from considering them. Being a single adult, their ability to help and be more self-reliant could be helpful. However, I ponder over the time needed to develop a lasting relationship. Is it a misconception that challenges with fostered/adopted kids grow the longer they are in the system?

Thoughts? Ideas?
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