The Casey Foundation and the Justice Resource Institute developed ARC Reflections, a training curriculum to develop foster parents and caregivers’ understanding of traumatic stress, increase their own emotional regulation and provide tools to support their parenting skills. The session three guide emphasizes the important role foster parents and caregivers play in the lives of children and teens who have experienced trauma; validates foster parents and caregivers’ emotions, reactions and missteps; and highlights the link between self-care and effective foster parenting.
Every session includes a check-in to increase awareness and engagement of participants; a facilitator checklist of session materials; practice activities and take home log for participants; a representative case study to follow throughout the sessions; and reflective questions for participant growth and understanding.
The Tough Side of Foster Parenting? Being Overwhelmed and Under Skilled. Here’s Help.
Findings & Stats
It is very difficult to support another person when you are overwhelmed, stressed, exhausted or just generally not in a good place.
Parenting is one of the most difficult jobs an individual can have, in part because of the unique characteristics of each child or teen, the dynamic process of development and the complicated nature of parenting in general.
It is okay to feel how you feel. It’s what you do with the feelings that matters when parenting children and teens who have experienced trauma.
Self-care practices are more likely to break down or become absent during periods of stress or right when we need them most.
Statements & Quotations
The more in control, regulated and competent you feel, the more likely you will feel effective in caring for children, and the more likely the child or teen is to experience you as a safe resource.
Paying attention to our thoughts, feelings and body sensations can give us important information. But it can be hard to remember to do. Practicing different ways of checking in with yourself on a regular basis can be a good tool for self-care.