Foster Care Myth Busters
Foster Care Myth Busters

Foster Care Myth Busters

About Foster Care

Foster care is intended to be a temporary solution for children who have been removed from their birth family homes for reasons of neglect, abuse, abandonment, or other issues endangering their health and/or safety. Every effort is made to help the child remain with his or her family; however, when a child comes into foster care they are most often placed in a foster home. Becoming a foster parent is an exciting journey that can seem like a confusing process if you don’t know the basics.

Foster Care Myths Debunked

Myth: I could never be a foster parent because it would break my heart when the child returned home.

Fact: Even if a foster child is only with you for a short time, or even if you can’t have an on-going relationship with the child, you may be the one person that can make a positive change in that child’s life forever. Children don’t forget that and they often resume contact with foster parents when they get older. By building relationships with biological families, you could continue to have contact with a child even after they successfully reunite with their parents.

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Myth: Foster parents have to stay at home with the children and can’t work a full-time job.

Fact: Many foster parents work outside of the home. You will be able to work with the home finder to identify appropriate child care plans – whether that be an actual daycare, or for our older kids, a friend, relative, or other foster parent who will agree to be approved for childcare.

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Myth: You must have an income of at least $45,000.

Fact: There are no specific income requirements. Foster parents must demonstrate that they have sufficient income to meet the needs of the family.

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Myth: You must be married.

Fact: You can be single, married, divorced or widowed.

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Myth: You must own your own home.

Fact: You can own or rent a home, trailer or apartment.

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Myth: You must have a college degree.

Fact: There are no educational requirements to become a foster parent.

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Myth: Foster children must have their own bedroom.

Fact: Foster children may share a room. Children of the opposite gender may not share a room. Foster children can also share a bedroom with biological (or adopted) children who live in the home too as long as they are the same gender and close in age.

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Myth: Same-sex parents are not capable of providing a healthy environment for an adopted child.

Fact: Children of same-sex parents adjust well and grow up in the same positive environment as those of heterosexual families.

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Myth: Foster parents must carry foster children on their medical insurance.

Fact: Most children in foster care are eligible for Medicaid. Foster parents are NOT required to carry foster children on their medical insurance.

* This article was originally posted on the Virginia Department of Social Services website. Visit their page to read more.

Related: Read Foster Care FAQs

Related: Read Becoming a Foster Parent