Fiction vs facts about youth in care

Speak-Out Youth Newsletter


  • They are unwanted
  • They are sexually promiscuous
  • They are too old to be adopted
  • They do not know how to love and interact with others
  • All foster parents treat their foster children unfairly
  • Incapable of getting a job
  • All kids in care have many counsellors in their lives
  • They will all grow up to live on the streets
  • They are all thieves/criminals
  • They are all angry and dramatic


  • They are very smart people, even if their grades don't show it all the time
  • They are ve

Saying yes to youth

Focus on Adoption magazine

Sarah Groothedde had been in foster care since she was an infant, bouncing from home to home and suffering abuse and neglect.

As a young teenager, she asked her social worker to find her a family. The worker told her she was too old for adoption, and that it would be “against the rules” and a waste of resources to try. “All I ever wanted was a home and a family,” says Groothedde. “But it wasn’t in the cards for me.”

"Perfect" parents for teens

Focus on Adoption magazine

Parents who are willing to wait for personal gratification.
Attachment with teens can take longer and may look very different than attachment with younger children.

Someone with a great sense of humour, patience, tolerance, and adaptability.
Self explanatory if you know teens.

People who can see beyond the rebellious teen to the blossoming young adult that they are becoming.
Are you able to quietly nurture the child that is still crying out for love and attention?

Wanted: Imperfect families

Focus on Adoption magazine

As awareness and recruitment around teen adoption grows, hope is on the rise for youth who were once considered  "unadoptable." We talked with Wendy's Wonderful Kids recruiter Anne Melcombe about how she looks outside the box to find families for the unique kids on her caseload.

Fathers and daughters

Focus on Adoption magazine

What is it about fathers and daughters? Why is it that fathers are supposed to worry so much about their daughters, their future, their behaviour, their friends? No real reason anymore, in this day and age, at least, no more than they should worry about a son. But still we make jokes about it, still we tend to be more strict with our girls, and tend to worry that little bit extra.

Depression in adopted teens: What families need to know

Focus on Adoption magazine

Only 20% of depressed teens ever receive help, yet over 80% of people who are treated feel better as a result.

Parenting teenagers can often trigger your own memories of growing up and the roller coaster ride of emotions, drama, unpredictability, and the need to fit in. You may be realizing that being a teenager today is more complicated than ever due to the steady stream of social media in all its various forms.

High school and my older adopted child

Focus on Adoption magazine

Gayla was adopted from Russia at age 11. Here, Gayla's mom describes how the family navigated teh academic challenges of high school.

Galya spent three solid years at elementary school and, though she was older than her friends and classmates, she neither felt nor behaved out of place. How would the move to high school go?

Teens and driving: A personal perspective

Focus on Adoption magazine

When a young adult has Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or other challenges that might affect his or her ability to drive a vehicle safely, what should parents do to protect their child, other pedestrians and drivers?

Even a typical teen takes quite a while to develop the skills needed to be a safe driver. When the situation is complicated by the fact that the teen or young person has ADHD or FASD, driving becomes even more complicated.

In my opinion: Mentally ill youth left behind

Focus on Adoption magazine

Adoptive mom says there's nowhere to turn for adoptive families with mentally ill youth. She also describes the services she'd like to see.

It’s estimated that 10 to 20% of Canadian youth have a mental illness or severe behaviour disorder.

You can bet that these youth are highly represented in the adoption population where mental health concerns are often combined with FASD, ADHD, and the brain damage caused by early abuse and neglect.


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