I have been asked if we plan on taking our foster son K to DisneyWorld with us. I had momentarily considered taking him because we typically do take foster kids along, however after thinking it over we have decided that we will not for several reasons.
First is financial Right now we have three rooms reserved with 4 in each room for a total of 12 people. If we added one more child we would have to add another room. This cost would be on us. We have taken foster children on vacation with us before and it is always at our expense. Not only would we have to add a room but we would have to figure out where to get the other ticket. We have two military members who can purchase 6 tickets a piece. Also, this child has a huge sense of self entitlement. He would constantly nag us to buy him stuff. Just this morning he said that I needed to take him shopping for more games for his Nintendo. It never seems to end, he isn't happy eating out and ordering off of the kids menu like the other kids do and complains that we won't let him buy more Pokemon cards (he has many more cards than any of the other kids in the house).
Second is behavior. I haven't talked much about his behavior but I will say that it is getting tiring. He doesn't like the word no and doesn't like that there are consequences. Tonight he was supposed to go to bed 30 minutes early for behaviors and he sat and cried that we were mean for 30 minutes before he went so he didn't actually go to bed early. He also complained that we are so mean and that he wants moved. If expecting that you follow the same rules of the house that the other kids follow is mean, then yes we are mean. We have 4 other sets of eyes watching him to see if he gets away with his stuff. I can't imagine the chaos we would have if we allowed him to do his "just this one time" type of stuff. I am constantly having to repeat to him that my no means no. This trip is about the adoption of Kassi, Michelle and Emma, not our foster son. I feel that his behaviors would take away from the meaning of the trip.
This placement has taught us a lot. I don't think that we will be taking any other foster placements that are close in age to our kids. When we received the girls they were an adoptive placement. We knew what challenges were ahead and accepted them. We also knew that they were staying so we were putting all that effort into children who would be our own. I know that sound selfish, but having K here takes away from our kids. All of his testing is having an effect on our kids and some of them are now testing in areas where we had made progress. I feel that there is a lot of backsliding because of one child's behaviors. If we were planning on adopting K then that is a cost we would take. However, K has family who has stepped forward and really should be short term. If we were to take in this age child all the time, our children would never be able to completely heal. We have decided that for foster placements that we will have our age moved back to under 5 years old. We need to do what we feel is in the best interest of our children at home.