“I’m pretty sure that’s not how foster care works.”
You may not know it, but ABC Family recently premiered a new show, The Fosters. Teri Polo and Sherri Shaun are Stef Foster and Lena Adams, the moms to a non-traditional, multiracial, adoptive family. Stef is white, Lena is black, and they’re lesbians. Brandon, Stef’s biological son from her previous (heterosexual) marriage, is apparently Latino and white. The twins, Marianna and Jesus, adopted from foster care at around age 8, are Latino. Enter Callie, a white teenager just out of juvie. And go.
Why am I not sure this is how foster care works? Well, Callie is placed with the moms when Lena calls their old caseworker to talk about setting up a meeting between Marianna and her birthmom. Apparently, Callie really needs a place to go where there aren’t male authority figures. Without talking to Stef first, Lena says yes. Callie arrives and she doesn’t even have a bed – she has to sleep on the couch.
Now, I don’t know much about foster care, but my understanding is that there are two things that all foster parents must have: a current home study and a bed for the child. I even think the bed has to be in a room with a door, if Judging Amy is any authority on the matter.
If you plan on watching The Fosters – and I do recommend it – please note that there are spoilers below.
Callie is looking for Jude, who turns out to be her younger brother. Callie’s foster father beat her, and when he caught Jude wearing one of the foster mom’s dresses, the foster father beat him too. Callie couldn’t stop him, so she ran out and smashed up his car. Hence, she ended up in juvie. Callie and Brandon go to the former foster home to rescue Jude. Ultimately, Stef, who is a cop, arrests the foster father, and she and Lena decide that Jude and Callie will both be coming home with them.
Once again, I’m pretty sure that’s not how it works. I’m pretty sure that an inactive foster family without any beds can take a child from another foster home and put them in their own.
But hey… it’s TV. And it’s definitely more accurate than Parenthood.
I’m going to keep watching The Fosters, on Hulu, as we don’t get cable. I imagine I’ll be writing more about it. If you’ve seen it, please leave a comment. Let me know what you think!