Adoption and Foster Care Blog

A Brief Guide to Foster Care and Adoption Etiquette

August 30, 2016

Whether you are considering becoming a foster parent in San Jose or you are getting ready to adopt a foster child permanently into your home, it’s important to keep a few dos and don’ts in mind. Following proper etiquette will help to create a more positive home environment for adoptive or foster children, as well as maintain a better relationship between yourself and your children. When speaking to an adoptive or foster child, differentiate yourself from his biological parents with terms such as “birth parents” and “adoptive parents,” rather than referring to his parents as his “real” or “natural” parents. Additionally, encourage all your children to accept each other equally by treating your biological children and adoptive or foster children in exactly the same way, rather than differentiating between the two. If you are fostering or adopting a child of a different race or religion, consider embracing these differences into your family or giving your foster child the option to choose which traditions he’d like to follow, rather than simply assuming he’ll want to pursue your established traditions.

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Nurturing Effective Communication with Your Foster Child

August 23, 2016

Effective communication is important for every family, and perhaps especially for families that are part of the foster care system. Foster children often feel sad, frightened, or confused about their situation, which may prompt them to act moody, angry, or in unpredictable ways. Learning how to communicate effectively with your foster child in San Jose can help him feel more comfortable about expressing his feelings to reduce outbursts and other misbehaviors, as well as create a more caring and understanding environment in your home.

Accept His Feelings Foster Child

One of the most common mistakes that many foster parents make is trying to eliminate a child’s feelings of anger, fear, or sadness. Instead, it’s important to acknowledge your foster child’s feelings and help him understand why he is feeling this way, rather than trying to make him feel guilty or wrong for expressing himself. Correcting misbehavior by providing your child with more constructive outlets for his feelings will show him that it’s okay to express his emotions in a positive and safe way.

Praise Good Behavior

While it’s easy to realize that you must communicate with your foster child when he is acting negatively, it’s just as essential to communicate when he is behaving well. Offering your foster child praise for simple actions, such as playing quietly while you are on the phone, finishing his homework, or eating his vegetables, shows that you are not only concerned and responsive when he misbehaves, but that you are willing to acknowledge his good behavior as well.

Encourage Consideration for Others

Children learn how to behave and think through the actions of others. Thus, as a foster parent, you can set a positive example for your child by encouraging him to think about others and how his actions affect them. Asking him how he feels when others behave in a certain way or encouraging him to consider your feelings or those of his peers before acting will help these patterns of thought become ingrained over time.

Hear One Mother Share Her Foster Care Experiences

August 16, 2016

Becoming a foster parent is a rewarding experience. Whether you want to provide a foster care environment for any child in need or are considering fostering as a step toward adoption, becoming a part of the foster care system in San Jose is a wonderful way to enrich and expand your home.

In this video, you will hear an adoptive mother who also acts as a foster parent speak about her many experiences with adoption and foster care. She stresses that although she is giving the foster children placed with her a safe and positive place to live, the children that have passed through her home have also given back to her in many ways as well. Check out this short video to learn more about the many benefits of becoming a foster parent for children in need of temporary or permanent care.

Common Questions About the Adoption Process

August 9, 2016

Whether you are already a foster parent considering adoption in San Jose or you are just getting started on the discussion to foster and adopt, there are many questions you may have about the adoption process. Understanding how adoption works can help make your decision easier and ensure you are matched with the child who is right for you. Discussing your questions and concerns with an adoption and foster care agency can provide you with the personalized answers you need to proceed with adoption or fostering.

How Long Does the Adoption Process Take? Adoption Process

While the steps involved in the adoption process are always the same, these steps may take varying lengths of time. Factors that affect the length of the adoption process include the age and gender of the child you wish to adopt, the amount of time it takes to complete an adoption home study, and the amount of time you are legally mandated to undergo post-placement supervision following placement of the child in your home.

Can I Adopt My Foster Child?

Children are placed in foster care as a temporary measure until they can be adopted or returned to their parents. If you are fostering a child, you can choose to adopt him if he becomes available for adoption—in fact, this is a common occurrence in the American adoption process. While you need not become a foster parent prior to adoption, fostering can be a great intermediate step for families prior to adoption.

What Happens If the Child’s Parents Change Their Minds?

The adoption process is not to be taken lightly. In order for a child to become available for adoption, both of his birth parents or legal guardians must relinquish their rights to the child. This means that once you have adopted a child, he cannot be legally removed from your family, even by his biological parents. However, you may choose to maintain a relationship with his birth parents if you wish, but this is a personal decision unique to all adoptive families.

What to Expect from the Adoption Process

July 28, 2016

If you have decided to adopt a child, there’s a good chance that you feel both excited and overwhelmed at the same time. The process of getting approved for adoption in Cupertino is lengthy in order to ensure that all children who are adopted go to loving homes, but it is ultimately very rewarding. At Rebekah Children’s Services, we are here to guide all of our prospective parents through the process. After you have met with a staff member to discuss adoption and attended an orientation, here is a look at what you can expect.

Application and Training Adoption Process

The first step in the adoption process involves completing an application and providing necessary information to allow us to perform a background check and review your residency status and income. While your application is being approved, you will have regular meetings with meetings with a staff representative, who can answer your questions about adopting. It is also recommended that you attend 16 to 23 hours precertification training to help you prepare for the demands of parenting.

Home Study

Once your application is approved, you will undergo a home study. The home study is designed to help our adoption agency staff get a picture of what your day-to-day life is like and to ensure that your home is ready for a child. During the home study, you will be interviewed by a staff member, who will also inspect your home and may make recommendations to make it safer and more welcoming for a child. This process is extremely important to not only ensure that children are going to the safest possible environments but also to help adoption agency staff get a clear picture of your lifestyle to match you with a child.


After the application and home study is complete, you will be certified to adopt a child. Rebekah Children’s Services will match you with a child and finalize the adoption process. Once the finalization has occurred, the adoption is complete and your child is officially part of your family.