Notably, nowadays, parents are realizing the need for education to elevate the lives of their children. They want to educate to see them become more sensible, successful and happy. However, it is often noticed that ‘parents’ trust foster care (sending their children to their brother’s, sister’s and any relative’s place) for their child’s education due to the lack of quality educational institutions and other means in the locality. A report by the American Academy of Pediatrics (2000), More than 500000 children is in foster care in the United States. Most of these children have been the victims of repeated abuse and prolonged neglect and have not experienced a nurturing, stable environment during the early years of life. Children in foster care have disproportionately high rates of physical, developmental, mental health problems and often have many unmet medical and care needs. Hence, here some pertinent questions arise; can the exercise of learning be done under intolerable pressure? Should education be done at the verge of affected health? Are we convinced that our child won’t face family misbehavior at relatives place?
According to a report published by Oxford University (2016), fostering mostly furnish negative results, not positive. The problem arises when the expectations of the parents concerning the care and better environment to the enhancement of their child don’t meet the reality. Parents do presume that the place, at which they had sent their child to study, is safe, protected, stress-free and happy to live. Instead of receiving warmth and supervision, their children face more suffocation, loneliness, and isolation, which exponentially affect the overall growth of the child. Intense level of pressure and mental disturbance becomes the everyday affair to encounter with. Being the local guardian of the child, a suffocating environment knowingly matured and that further not only interrupts the child’s mental state but also make him believe less in maintaining family relations. The meaning of a relative drastically changes for the child. Eventually, the child gets into the dilemma of being stuck between their career and unbearable pressure and often chooses a career as their first priority and moves ahead with heavy stress of feeling unwanted, where the child has grappled with constant denial and avoidance at every stage. Substantial research was done by NCBI (National Centre for Biotechnology Information), United States National Library of Medicines suggests that some foster children are characterized by problematic psychosocial functioning and their problems do not always diminish during their stay in foster care. It affects the child severely; often unwillingness is expressed to return back to their temporal house, where they have to reside despite all the adverse conditions, where no one notices if the child has eaten sufficiently the entire day or starving due to the lack of money. Trivial problems ranging from having two sip milk in the name of a full glass of milk to having stale food and hiding nutritious food, to not let them eat.
The problem intensifies if there is already a child at the temporal house of stay. The child’s presence and essential requirements are left unnoticed. Instead of generating a favorable environment, things get even more heartbreaking for the bearer. A survey was done in the UK (2015) shows that 88.60% of the population is not interested in providing foster care. They don’t even consider their children to be a foster child as not only relationships but studies also are affected proportionally. Instead of finding vacuum to focus on their aspirations and creativity, their mind gets blocked from thinking fresh, unique, original and productive.
It also ruins the relationships among the elders too. Issues strike in between as the conversation gets tougher to receive justice when the issue finally reaches the parents of the child. It’s good if you do share a good bonding with your brothers and sisters. However, this may not remain necessarily true for your child. Recurrently, we can witness the adverse behaviors of the relatives, when it comes to keeping someone else’s child and believing him/her to be an integral part of the family.
At the last, what so ever be the relation, the data suggest that not to send your children for a long duration to anybody’s house for any purpose as mostly negative outcomes are obtained. A deed done with a good intention does not necessarily give positive results. Sometimes there are reverse conditions too.
Report by Oxford University – http://reescentre.education.ox.ac.uk/research/allegations-of-abuse-against-foster-carers/
Report by NCBI (National Centre for Biotechnology Information) -https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5847213/
Report by the American Academy of Pediatrics https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/106/5/1145
Survey report of UK – https://www.cliffordhousefostering.com/foster-caring-in-the-uk-survey-2015/
Anamta Ahmed is a B.A.(Prog.), IInd year student at Indraprastha College of Women