The more posts that are being made to this thread, the more irritated I am getting. Fosterparent, have you ever BEEN a foster parent? You asked for the opinion of others & they are giving it to you, but you keep on circling around to your own original statement of wanting this mother to stay home and care for her foster child. Her hypothetical foster child, who might be 2 year old, and who might be two months old. It seems to me that no matter what anyone else has said, you are determined to convince this woman to quit her job to care for the kids.
Number one, in foster care, the goal is reunification. The kids may only be with the family for a few months. Why would anyone quit their job in that situation? Number two, the state will pay for state licensed child care if both parents are working. They will NOT pay for a nanny. Number three, foster parenting is HARD. Taking care of three kids is HARD. It's not a big deal if you want to pass on a book or article, but the reality is that people who are not foster parents do. not. understand. You are at the whim of the county, people in and out of your house all the time. Appointments left and right. An awkward co-parenting dance with someone who you may come to not like very much. A list of rules a mile long and just as wide. You assume the baby will have/may develop an attachment disorder while the reality is that all three of them may already have one. If that is the case, holy shit, I would send them all to daycare!
I am a stay-at-home mother and have been since our first was born three and a half years ago. We have had three foster placements over the span of that time w/ us taking 2 years off in the middle to have a second child and take care of my gravely ill mother. All three placements were newborns. Our current dfd is six months old & was placed w/ us at birth. Two weeks later, she went back to mom. Two months later, she came back to us & has been here since w/ no signs of returning. DH and I are her primary caregivers 24/7. She gets two visits per week with her mother & she has a babysitter who watches her for a few hours twice per week, once so that I can attend Bible study sans children and once every other week so that I can take my other two girls to our Morning Garden class. My husband travels for work every other week, so during that time Bible study and dfd's visits with her mother are my only break. Did I mention that CYF in our county has insane rules about what your babysitter must go thru to watch your foster child alone? It includes getting a physical and taking a TB test. I am present in the building during Bible study, so that is okay, and dh works from home, so the sitter can only come every other week during Morning Garden. When dh is out of town, I take all three girls w/ me, not only to school, but to everywhere I go. Our CYF-listed "substitute caregiver" (our dear friend who actually went thru the approval process for us) has two little kids of her own now and works. Oh, and she cannot watch dfd in her own home b/c that process is even more invasive & the family is not willing to do it. Basically, this means that dfd is with me at all times. DH and I cannot even go out to dinner alone b/c of CYF sitter requirements. Telling a foster mom, "I think you should become a stay-at-home-mother," can be an even bigger commitment to that child than if she had her own child! When the time comes that we do receive a child with special needs, I cannot just call up a friend to watch said child, even if I desperately need a break. The best I could hope for would be to go outside in the yard while someone played with the kids inside. Same for my husband.
DH and I are committed AP parents. For foster babies, this means babywearing & bottlenursing with us being the only ones feeding and changing lo until we feel proper attachment has been established. Cosleeping is not allowed, which is okay with us, but we do not do CIO. We carry dfd A LOT and are as responsive as we can be with three little ones to care for. DFD is bathed and lotioned and groomed and fussed over non-stop. These are all things we would do even if I worked outside the home and our kids went to daycare. It may come to pass that your relative decides that she and her family will be better off if she, or her husband, quits work. They may decide that they bit off more than they could chew and the kids move to a different placement. NOTHING in foster care is written in stone. Not a thing. For parenting, I would suggest any of the books by Sears. They are all about forming good, attached relationships with your children. The magazine Adoptive Families http://www.adoptivefamilies.com is the only print magazine I have encountered that even talks about foster care & it is really good. It will be nice for your relatives to have supportive people in their lives, but giving unsolicited advice is quite rarely appreciated, no matter what the topic.