One of the hardest things to balance in running an orphanage and being a foster parent is learning how to deal with blood family.
Naturally children want to know where they come from and why they don’t have their mom and dad or grandparents around like others in the schools and social settings they are a part of and why their parents aren’t involved in their lives or if they care.
Unfortunately we don’t have clear answers and we don’t control how much involvement the parents have as that is the job of each child’s social worker.
Recently our 4 siblings Zee, Sanele, Sonny and Lou spent a day visiting their mom and dad at their mom’s house. They loved seeing her and seeing that their mom was doing better but it also brought back a lot of traumatic memories that we then have to work to pick up the pieces. From false promises of the parents coming to visit, to being clean and sober and saying they will buy them anything or did buy them anything when they were younger. To then blaming the children for being the reason that they can’t be with their parents. Zee’s mom even told her if she starts behaving she will be able to move back home and have their family back together.
The emotional turmoil that followed this visit with blood family was really sad for us to watch and we felt hopeless in being able to protect and comfort our kids.
Then we have other children with us that don’t have parents or even worse their parents that never want or try to see them. Some of our children are afraid of visits with their parents because they were abused or neglected and are scared they might have to go back to taking care of themselves. So when you organise a visit it causes so much fear and anxiety in their worlds.
It is just so hard to know what is best for each child and what will be best for them when they become adults.
The great thing is we can always point to God as our perfect Father and when Lyndall and I or our house mothers fail or when the children’s blood family does something very hurtful we can bring it to God because He can answer and understand the children and their hearts better than we can.
Please pray for strength and wisdom for us when it comes to navigating the relationships between our children and their blood family. And pray too for the blood family that they would come to know our God.