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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone. I am having my fourth baby. My husband and I would like to be foster parents. i would also like to be able to offer to breastfeed an infant for health reasons while I am still lactating. In new Mexico, we were told that we can't be foster parents if our children are not vaccinated. Also that foster parents cannot nurse their foster child. Can any one tell me what they know about these issues? We would like to open our home but it doesn't seem possible at all because our kids are not vaccinated. Thanks!
 

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I seriously doubt you'd be able to nurse a foster child without direct permission from the family AND CPS or the equivalent.

Depends on the area, of course, but I know lots of FPs who don't vaccinate their children. You will be required to comply with the mandate of the agency for the foster child though, which means that THEY will be vaccinated.

Who told you these things? An official representative? Anything less, take it with a grain of salt until you can get direct answers from the source.
 

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I am an adoption social worker on the East Coast. The nursing of a foster child would be a no. Vaccinating a foster child is a legal requirement. Having your bio children vaccinated is not.

Hope that helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I does. I was told this by CYFD when I inquired about foster parenting. I will try again and ask without the breastfeeding part. Maybe that freaked them out. It didn't seem that strange to me at the time.
 

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I know what you mean about Breastfeeding-it seems like no biggie to us, but for legal reasons, it is to the state. There are issues of health, supply, family comfort, consistency (if baby was moved from your home), etc. I know what you mean about it not seeming like a big deal though!
 

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Actually, we had a thread on bfing fc within the last year. If you realize that your role as a foster parent (as opposed to an adoptive parent) is TEMPORARY care--which means they are supposed to go back... either to their parents or to a relative. If those people were not and will not be bfing, you're now setting the child up for a nasty transition when the goal is to minimize that kind of trauma for the child. I'd be more likely to argue in favor of giving them pumped bm through a bottle and transitioning them to formula as they transition back to whomever they're going to so that there's less shock to their system.

The other thing is, while the transfer rate of Hep is low from bm to child, it's there. If you're bfing, then you open yourself up to that exposure. They won't know a child's Hep status for up to 15 months (they MAY know immediately, but they may not)... and that assumes they know bm's Hep (or HIV) status.

And just because someone can and will bf doesn't make them all-around "okay" in my book. How do they eat? What else do they do that may not be okay? Do they also take meds or OTC stuff because some Dr. said it was okay with bfing? Not something I'd want my kid subjected to if he landed in foster care.

For the record, my nearly 5yo is just now weaning. I STRONGLY believe in the benefits of bfing. I'm a fp and fully understand the need for attachment in bonding in a child. I just feel that it can be accomplished without bfing them (as many bottlefeeding mothers manage to do it) and long-term, it may be best for a child that will ultimately land somewhere else.
 

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Nursing an infant who may go on to someone who does not nurse is an undue hardship on the child, imo. While dfd is learning to feed from a bottle, sucking too hard and whatnot, she is getting better and can take a bottle from anyone. DD, on the other hand, now refuses bottles of bm from ANYONE, so should, God forbid, anything happen to me, idk if she would even drink formula at this point. Now, imagine that dd were my nursing foster child and she went back to her bio mom now. That would be extremely traumatic w/ much crying and thrashing on her part ~ not fair to anyone, esp her! I know that your intentions are good! Also, dfd receives enough pumped bm from her bio mother to be almost exclusively fed bm, so there is that possibility for your foster babies!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by dogretro View Post
Also, dfd receives enough pumped bm from her bio mother to be almost exclusively fed bm, so there is that possibility for your foster babies!
That's terrific for your fd but definitely something that would not be allowed in a lot of places/situations.
 

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I just got temporary custody of my 2 mo old grandson (and his 2YO sister). It was really all I could do to NOT offer him a breast the 1st time he cried! I KNOW I could have relactated, and my breasts still ache when he cries, but I fix a bottle of the stinky formula. I think if I knew he would be staying here, it would have been harder, but the theory is his Mom will get him back. I already am concerned that he is getting used to co-sleeping, and will be expected to be in a crib when he returns. (Sorry, I just can't do the crib thing, and as a non-official foster parent, I can make my own rules, for these babies at least).

Interestingly, and in a way related, I cannot get the 2 YO sister to cosleep. I would much prefer to have the babies with me - that is how I have raised my Dumplings, and it feels safe and protected to me. But she cannot sleep with anyone in the room, sleeps so lightly that anyone's sneeze would surly wake her, and she cries when I have tried to get her to sleep with me. She needs to be rocked and cuddled, sang to and kissed, but then put down in a crib. She cries for less than 30 seconds, then falls asleep. This is all she knows, and I would not be doing her any favor by changing her habit. Much as I think the closeness of cosleeping is important, I have to remember that this is about the babies' needs, not mine.

No one has ever asked if my bio kids are vaccinated, and I never offered any details. But I do have to vaccinate my regular foster kids (I am also a licensed foster home) even if we all know full well that I am adopting as soon as possible.

I appear pretty radical/hippie to social workers, and I have never had any problem in my current area. But is other states, I have been denied a license for silly reasons. I think it all depends on the individual worker, the political climate of your area, and like that.

All the best in your fostering decisions!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by dogretro View Post
Also, dfd receives enough pumped bm from her bio mother to be almost exclusively fed bm.
Wow. I'm still trying to pick myself up off the floor here. This is absolutely phenomenal to me. I can't even get the parents of my foster baby to show up to each 1 hour visitation or to call once every 3 months. Pumping for her child? Wow. That mom really sounds motivated!! Also, I hope drugs aren't an issue for the mom. I'd be horrified to find out the baby was being fed by me something that was tainted. I know for us, we're only allowed to feed homog. milk products. If I could, though, I'd be all over the milk-inducing herbs and increasing my supply to bf my foster/hopefully adopt baby. In a heartbeat!

To the op: my bio kiddos aren't vaxed. I hate having to vax my foster baby (just had to do the third round today
). The state only asked for a physician's siggy verifying my children's health. Nothing about vax status.
 
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