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Desperate foster parent

Community Member
I've become a foster parent of 2 little girls under 4 for nearly 12 months now. I don't have any feelings for these children and am constantly feeling guilty about the lack of emotion I'm able to give them. I know they need love that I seem to be incapable of providing. They are well cared for and happy but missing the love they need. Every moment spent with them is difficult and all I want to do is stay in bed and not see anyone. I can't even smile. I've changed anti-depressants hoping these symptoms are due to depression and will pass, but I'm 5 weeks into the medication and seem to be getting worse, not better. I haven't had much luck finding places/forums to discuss these feelings and if its normal. I feel like such a failure when I see other parents and foster parents and the joy they get from their children. Any advice or pointers greatly received.
14 Replies 14

Hi Peppapig,

I could have written this!

my thoughts get so dark it doesn't seem real or it's embarrassing to show my shrink. But I feel like I'm always acting with others and never letting them know just how bad I feel.

When I'd written out my bad day I was ashamed to let hubby read it. He put it in an envelope and told me please don't read it again or second guess yourself. Just hand it over to the psych. I did. It was such a horrible experience but the relief was enormous because finally she saw what was really going on in ny head and that I needed help.

Dr. Kim has some really good advice. Being open with your GP or psych or counsellor or whoever is important. How can they help you if they don't know what's happening?

I'm really glad you feel good about the forums I do too. I like how compared to the "real" world everyone is so honest. It makes us realise we are good people we just need a bit of help and support.

Take care Peppa and talk as much as you like 😊

Thanks for your support. Its so good knowing that other people understand and have felt/feel the same way. Its nice not being alone. I feel ready to support others on the forum now through the help I've got here. Thank you!

Hi Peppapig,

You've been very quiet just checking how you're going.

How have you been feeling? Are your medications helping at all now? How have you been feeling about the kids has there been any improvement?

I hope you've been quiet simply because there has been an improvement and you're feeling ok but please feel free to let us know how you're going.

Community Member
Hey peppapig,

So to give some context, I am an adult who was raised as a ward of the state and suffered foster care at its worst. Firstly I want you to ease up on yourself, it's a bit harsh to beat yourself up like that. So you did something not many can do but providing a home to kids in need of placement, that is a big deal, sadly carers are rarely prepared or equipped to handle such a broad range of needs from kids who have suffered the worst trauma there is. The removal from the home isn't a small deal,it ravaged me as a 7 yr old and I still bare the scars. These girl you are caring for have come into your home and all those things that led to being placed in care have bled out and although you may not be consciously aware, they have affected you. Don't blame your lack of feeling on yourself, in order to give a child love it requires the child to open and receive. I want to say how amazing you are and please put your well-being at the top,seek support and guidance but don't feel trapped in this, if it plays on you so much that you feel this way maybe end the placement to get yourself back to centre. I had many carers who merely provided the basic needs I had without giving any emotion or affection, but they didn't harbour resentment toward me so I thrived, I wish you all the best and please stop being so hard on yourself,your amazing

Community Member
Have you tried going to a professional therapist to discuss these issues and anxiety? I believe that this problem and depression should not only be treated with pills because behind your emotional states some traumas also need to be resolved. First of all, you have to wonder if you did it with all your heart when you became a foster parent. Because it is possible that the change that came in your life with those 2 children would have brought a negative change on a psychological level. I dream of fostering, but I am not allowed to because of psychological reasons.