We’ve all been there. You need a ride to the airport at 4:00 in the morning. Your car won’t start and you need a jump before work. Maybe your babysitter cancelled last minute and you are desperate for a back-up plan.
We’ve all been in a tight spot and had to rely on our friends and family for the support we needed. Sometimes, asking for that help comes naturally and easily. Sometimes, asking for help is just the worst.
Maybe you hate to be vulnerable and admit you can’t do it all.
Maybe everyone else is busy and you don’t want to add your burdens to theirs.
Maybe you’re worried others will see you at your lowest and think less of you.
Maybe you just don’t have those people around you that are willing to do life with you.
So what does this have to do with foster care?
Foster parents feel the lack of social support much more keenly. Because of the complex, confidential and ever-changing world foster parents enter into, they have to call on their support systems regularly.
It is tough to ask for help all the time. You feel guilty and so needy!
What if instead of putting foster parents in a position where they had to ask for help, we instead ‘flipped the script’ and regularly asked foster parents how we can help them?
Instead of the dreaded “Let me know how I can help!”, what if we asked meaningful, helpful questions instead.
“I’m making lasagna this week, can I bring you a pan?”
“My teenager has a lawn-mowing business and s/he mows in your area on Thursdays. Can s/he come cut your grass for free?”
“I’d love to babysit your kids this week so you can go on a date night, would Friday or Saturday work better?”
“When do you have court this month? Can I be praying for anything specifically for that meeting?”
If you have a foster parent in your life, try flipping the script and offering your help in specific, intentional ways. You’ll be amazed what a difference you can make in the life of a child and their family.