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Old 09-07-2005, 06:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My husband and I have decided to do foster care. I am so excited. I want a baby but my body really will not allow it right now. I have crohns and the doctors dont think I would make it through. I cant have nutrition and since the child takes a good portion of your nutrition, I would probably not survive. I want to help children in the world. My DS is excited about a new child, or children in the home. Any advice out there about what to expect? I really want to induce lactation with the child as well. I cant wait. We have orientation on the 13th.

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Old 09-07-2005, 06:32 PM
 
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That is very exciting! I don't have any advice to offer, really, but I don't think you will be allowed to nurse a foster child.

Congrats on this big decision.

L.
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Old 09-07-2005, 08:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I do not think that you are allowed to BF a foster child either, but think of how good it would be for the baby that was born into a world of drugs or something and has no immune system. It would be ggod for him/her. Thank you for your response, I am excited, I will talk more on this as it happens

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Old 09-08-2005, 08:06 PM
 
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Just a thought, but could you give a foster child EBM? Then at least they would get all the good immunities and stuff.
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Old 09-08-2005, 08:13 PM
 
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Congratulations on deciding to foster. Ditto on the bf foster kids.
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Old 09-09-2005, 07:38 AM
 
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Happy for you mama.
Good luck....
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Old 09-09-2005, 10:25 AM
 
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Congrats! We are currently awaiting our first foster baby. . . could be any day now!

It depends on where you live in regards to the legality of foster breastfeeding and/or feeding of ebm. That said, no one is going to be watching you 24 hours a day, making sure you don't nurse the baby. So you have to decide for yourself what you feel comfortable doing (cosleeping is not allowed either, but the social worker is not going to show up in the middle of the night and check to see where the baby is sleeping). And of course, you should be giving at least a couple of bottles a day so that the baby is used to bottle-feeding incase of reunification.

On the adoptive breastfeeding website. . . www.fourfriends.com/abrw/ there is a forum for breastfeeding foster babies. Definitely check it out if you haven't already.

I don't have much milk anymore, and am not really interested in increasing my supply since we're ttc and I'm in the process of weaning one of my toddlers. I'm not planning to bf our foster baby, but I do know a mom in our area (where it is illegal) who has breastfed a couple of babies using a supplementer. She is planning to adopt, and all of the babies who come into her care are pre-adoptive (unfortunately, they've all still moved on to be placed with relatives). We are planning to take babies who are on the reunification track. If we were going to adopt I would want to try to breastfeed, but I don't feel as strongly about it for babies who will only be with us a short while.

I hope your training experience is fun! Ours was, surprisingly enough!

Lex

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Old 09-10-2005, 12:57 PM
 
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I am a foster mom and have raised several newborns in the system. Please do not breastfeed any foster baby or give them EBM. No matter how great breastmilk is for a child, please remember that this is not your child. I would never want another woman to give my child her body fluids. Just as I would never want another woman to put her saliva on my baby's nipple or pacifier or her blood on my child. I'm thinking of the health of the child. Even if you have no outstanding health issues, I think it is extremely disrespectful to breastfeed someone else's child without their permission.
Yes, the majority of foster children are removed due to drugs, however, all foster children do not have this issue. Nevertheless, these babies are able to thrive on formula, which, by law, they must be given, not bf.

There are numerous ways to practice AP with foster children that do not cross health/safety lines.
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Old 09-10-2005, 02:16 PM
 
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As someone said above, foster bfing varies depending on location. I know a few women who have total support to breastfeed foster babies. One bf her foster child and the birthparent was thrilled knowing she would be able to keep bfing upon reunification. I think like everything with foster care, each situation is different. I think totally ruling it out is not necessary, but assuming you can nurse every child would likely be getting your hopes up to be crushed. Explore it with your social worker and agency. I have a friend approved by her agency to nurse the babies in her care. They all think its wonderful. I would say it definately depends on agency/situations...

Good luck!
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Old 09-10-2005, 05:56 PM
 
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Congrats! And I just want to ditto the pp's about nursing........I have heard of it happening before with caseworker and parental approval, but it's uncommon; IMO it's not worth the battle and possibility of losing your license....

There are plenty of ways to AP w/out nursing

If you haven't already, check out the fourms at www.fosterparents.com , you'll get a true idea of what fostering is like.

We've been fostering for over a year, and it's been wonderful, fullfilling, heartbreaking, and damn frustrating. We have learned alot, most importantly what ages/genders/type of kids work best for our family. We started out wanting babies, but now will only take ages 2 and up.......it's all a learning process

Good luck!

"Have faith in yourself and in the direction you have chosen." Ralph Marston

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Old 09-11-2005, 07:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shibababy
Please do not breastfeed any foster baby or give them EBM. . . I'm thinking of the health of the child.
Just had to point out that in most cases, breastfeeding a foster baby would IMPROVE the health of the baby. There are few diseases/illnesses that are communicable through breast milk, and while those that are communicable are quite serious, I can't imagine that anyone who had one of those diseases would attempt to breastfeed a foster baby (choosing to breastfeed her own baby, of course, would be a different story). So, if the health of the baby is the issue, I think most would agree that breast milk is the best choice.

If for some reason my babies were taken from my care and placed in a foster home, I would definitely prefer that they be breastfed and not formula fed.

I breastfed my friend's twin newborns when she was too sick to do it herself. . . it felt great to be able to give them my breast milk and not have to give them any formula. We are all humans. Breast milk is breast milk. Saliva is saliva. I am not afraid of germs.

Just another way to think about it.

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Old 09-13-2005, 01:34 AM
 
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Old 09-13-2005, 02:18 AM
 
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congratulations on your decision to do foster care!! My DH and I have been foster parents for over two years now. We've had 14 babies/children through our home and are currently in adoptions with our son we've had since birth.. It's a tough road....but totally fulfilling.....are you going with an FFA or the county? There ar benefits to b oth but with an FFA you are a little more "protected". Good luck and feel free to pm me anytime with questions.....we've had all sorts of different kiddos...

Here's me I married then we had dd15 , dd11 , ds10 , and then and now we and I blog!
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Old 09-13-2005, 12:59 PM
 
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JMO,
I would absolutely freak out if, for some reason, my child had to be in a foster care situation and I found out that the foster mom had been *sneaking* her breastmilk to my baby, regardless if it were directly from her breast or not. Totally disrespectful. I KNOW breastmilk is best for the baby but something about that seems really wrong to me. I guess its the dishonesty. Talk it over, if the birthmom and caseworker are okay with it, then great... but dishonesty is never a good solution to anything.
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Old 09-15-2005, 01:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok so it was just a suggestion if i could evn get my milk back in. Due to time I dont think it would be possible anyways, but as far as the law, I would not break it. I would respect the mother, or parents and I thank you, but I just wanted feedback, I was confused, I will not be BFing any body elses child. I think I agree it, when I read your comments, I feel as though it is extremely unethicle, and quite disgusting of an act toward the real mother, If it were to be without her knowing. thank you ladies, you have helped me big time.

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Old 09-15-2005, 02:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok so it was just a suggestion if i could evn get my milk back in. Due to time I dont think it would be possible anyways, but as far as the law, I would not break it. I would respect the mother, or parents and I thank you, but I just wanted feedback, I was confused, I will not be BFing any body elses child. I think I agree it, when I read your comments, I feel as though it is extremely unethicle, and quite disgusting of an act toward the real mother, If it were to be without her knowing. thank you ladies, you have helped me big time.

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Old 09-15-2005, 03:35 AM
 
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Foxxymamma,

I don't think that people are thinking you in particular would have done anything unethical. I think there are people who are so pro-breastfeeding, that they would think the benefits of breastfeeding outweighed the ethics related to fosterparenting, and might think it okay to go behind people's backs. I think that it is interesting to ponder the different boundaries when you parent vs. foster parent.

L
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Old 09-18-2005, 02:24 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artgirl
JMO,
I would absolutely freak out if, for some reason, my child had to be in a foster care situation and I found out that the foster mom had been *sneaking* her breastmilk to my baby, regardless if it were directly from her breast or not. Totally disrespectful. I KNOW breastmilk is best for the baby but something about that seems really wrong to me. I guess its the dishonesty. Talk it over, if the birthmom and caseworker are okay with it, then great... but dishonesty is never a good solution to anything.

Yes! my feelings exactly, but you said it much better than me. I think breastfeeding a child without a parent's approval is a total violation!
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Old 09-18-2005, 11:18 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shibababy
I think breastfeeding a child without a parent's approval is a total violation!

This is such an interesting discussion! I wonder when, in our culture, it became completely acceptable to feed another mother's baby formula without her permission, yet breastfeeding that baby without permission is considered by some to be a total violation. . . When did breastfeeding switch from being the most natural, totally normal, essential way to feed *any* baby to being something potentially violating? I'm guessing that in many--if not most--parts of the world, any mother would be grateful to any other woman who would volunteer to breastfeed the mother's baby were she unable, with or without the mother's explicit permission. I wonder if the beliefs that lead some to consider breastfeeding to be potentially violating are the same that lead to the low breastfeeding rates in our country. Do you think that this is a shift that was born out of the introduction of formula?

I'm not surprised by some mamas' responses to this topic, though it does fascinate me to see how affected we are by society's views on breatfeeding--even us in the "attachment parenting" minority.

Lex

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Old 09-19-2005, 10:16 AM
 
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Lexbeach- I see what you're saying. I understand your point and it is interesting to me. It made me stop and think for a moment about the potential that I have been brainwashed. The thing is... you can't transmit any serious illnesses to a child through formula-feeding and you can by breastfeeding. (I am making assumptions that the formula being used hasn't been contaminated—I know that's happened). What if some really well-meaning mom breastfed a foster infant and that infant became infected with HIV? Oh that would break the bio mom's heart... AND the well-meaning foster mom.
Plus, I have to admit, I feel breastfeeding my infant is MY right... our special bond. I wouldn't want anyone intruding on that bond without my consent. It would really upset me. Might not be rational but that is how I'd feel.
So although I agree that breastfeeding is the most natural/normal way to feed an infant I still don't think foster moms shoud be doing it WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF THE BIO MOM.
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