FAW: Supporting the Emotional Healing of the Children in Your Care


Supporting the Emotional Healing of the Children in Your Care

One of the most important and ever-present jobs of a foster parent is to help children heal from past traumas and emotional difficulties. Wounds from past negative events can act like invisible barriers to emotional connection. This can be especially true for the kids we care for, who may have entered our families as a result of past wounds. Unlocking these past events – exploring and acknowledging them – can help the child in your care break cycles of negative self-esteem, negative projections on others, and behaving toward the ones they love in ways they are not proud of.

Children and youth process their emotions in very unique ways. They tend to explore themselves and the world around them through their senses, through creative expression, and through their social connections. Emotional healing varies from child to child, depending on their cognitive development, the adverse experiences they have had, and what coping skills they may or may not have developed.

The best way to be a support person in a child’s journey of emotional healing is to be creative and open while recognizing that the child is an individual and that there are no one-size-fits-all solutions. Working as part of a team with school staff, medical personnel, and social workers, will ensure consistency for the child and help to maintain a clearer sense of what is in the child’s best interest. You are an important advocate for the child in your care, so please be sure to share your insight and perspective.

Articles include:

  • Supporting the Emotional Healing of the Children in Your Care
  • Learning to Forgive
  • Forgiving Family

Download: FAW Summer 2016

Author: Coalition for Children, Youth & Families
Additional Author: Foster Care & Adoption Resource Center
Other Resources