Notice: Forum posts will not be published until they have been approved by FosterClub staff.

Christia's picture

This discussion question is also part of a foster parent online training syllabus: Strategic Sharing.

Strategic Sharing

Kaaron07's picture

These are wise principles for any person to use in choosing what to share of their stories, especially young people who have not had a supportive adult to help guide them through these issues before.

Strategic Sharing

katdoc's picture

I think that it's important to empower young people to take ownership of their own stories. I would talk to them about the reasons they would consider sharing, as well of the pros and cons to sharing certain information. Helping them to get a better understanding of what to share and with whom, how it may affect them as well as the person/s with whom they are sharing. I think that this is especially important in this age of social media, when young people seem to be putting so much of themselves "out there" and there's a strong desire to follow the crowd. Most important, I want to have an open line of communication, so that I can have these conversations and that the young folks will be able to use the support that I can offer to help them determine how to share strategically.

Strategic Sharing

clear00007's picture

I believe it all start with listening then helping the child to know that the emotions they may feel now can change. However, support the share of their experiences but teach and guide on how to accomplish this respectfully. This will be an ongoing process and the plan may need to be tweaked based on circumstance but the red, yellow and green light is definitely a strategy that should always be implemented no matter how circumstances may change.

Strategic Sharing

clear00007's picture

I believe it all start with listening then helping the child to know that the emotions they may feel now can change. However, support the share of their experiences but teach and guide on how to accomplish this respectfully. This will be an ongoing process and the plan may need to be tweaked based on circumstance but the red, yellow and green light is definitely a strategy that should always be implemented no matter how circumstances may change.

sharing / escape doors

lmwitts's picture

I will stress the need to develop and help or child become comfortable with using escape doors and then coach them in their use. They will know that they do not need to answer every question. I'd also coach the traffic light strategy.

choosing to share

ellenholt's picture

My eldest daughter didn't want anyone to know she was a foster kid when she started school. I told her that I would only tell those adults who had to know, and they would not say anything to her classmates. That it was up to her to decided whether she wanted to share that information with anyone and it was no one else's business. She has since shared some of her story (and we have since adopted her) with very close friends who she feels she can trust, but we do not refer to any of our children as former foster children or adopted children. They are our children.

Sharing

Magnum's picture

Ther are times when it's OK to share but you don't have to share everything that happen

Sharing

SarahandClay's picture

There are times when sharing is inappropriate and other time when it is necessary. Letting the kids know when, where, and who it's okay to share is very important. I know that there are also times when they need to share and they do not feel comfortable doing it. Letting them know that they are safe in sharing with the correct people might help them in their lives.

Sharing

SarahandClay's picture

There are times when sharing is inappropriate and other time when it is necessary. Letting the kids know when, where, and who it's okay to share is very important. I know that there are also times when they need to share and they do not feel comfortable doing it. Letting them know that they are safe in sharing with the correct people might help them in their lives.

Strategic Sharing

roxwhite123's picture

Sharing our stories has such a powerful impact on others when much care and consideration is given to what we share, when we share, and who we are sharing it with. The red, yellow, green light strategy seems to be a wonderful way to put some protective boundaries in place for both the person sharing the story and the people hearing the story. Its critical to remember that the purpose for sharing a story is often two-fold - the speaker has a opportunity to grow by sharing a personal experience and the listener has an opportunity to learn and grow by hearing and responding to the experience of another.

Sharing

ericward's picture

Our age range is younger kids, so this will depend on their level of awareness and ability to communicate. It would be a fine line between teaching boundaries and not wanting them to think they shouldn't talk about it or that it's something to be ashamed of. Once kids are old enough to understand, I would basically talk about the different "circles" of people in their life and possible results of oversharing with the wrong audience.

Strategic Sharing

mayaward's picture

The age of the kids (and what is developmentally appropriate) would have a great deal to do with how/when this is discussed. Overall, I will be sure to communicate that their story is theirs to share, not mine or anyone else's. I also plan to discuss boundaries and possible consequences that could arise as a result of sharing certain details (I liked the red/yellow light illustration). I think a good point the articles brought up was also to think about what the goal/motivation is in sharing (awareness, etc).

strategic sharing

lworm's picture

I plan on discussing the different steps and boundaries of strategic sharing with the kids. I want them to understand that there are positives and negatives to sharing too much and/or too little.

Strategic Sharing

beverly40's picture

I want my foster kid to be able to share anything with me and to help them understand the boundaries of what information should be shared. I don't want them to be ashamed of their story just prudent in the way they share it

Sharing

mallman251's picture

It is important to have the foster children share with us how they feel. it not only lets them get off their chest whats bothering them it lets us understand and try to help.

Sharing

johnstaley's picture

The children who have come into my home I always want them to feel safe sharing whatever they need/want to. We keep our questions open ended and just listen. I feel like sharing is a way of healing to some. When we get to the point that the child wants to share with us it is a good place.

Sharing

rjsmallory64's picture

My foster kids are still very young, So i encourage them to share their feelings with me and listen without interrupting them. i think this is very important for them to feel someone care and is listening to them.

Sharing with classmates

Katie Gossett's picture

We talked about sharing with classmates quite a bit with our foster child. Kids on the playground can be mean and we encouraged him to think through ahead of time what he would want potentially all the kids at school to know before sharing his story with any of his peers.

Stragetic Sharing

cls2lrn2's picture

As a FP, I chose to whom I share and what I share because, everyone is not supportive and caring so my question is "why" is this person asking and whatever I decide to share, whom will they share that info with? Do I know them? Would I want them to know that info about me as well etc. When it comes to the children, all depends on the ages. It can be explained that we have to chose what we share and why we are sharing with that person. Also, that your life story is just that and you have no obligation to share, if you chose and what you share is totally up to you.

sharing is caring

jesikad01's picture

I think sharing is important to healing and everyone should be encouraged to share when apprpriate

safe place

GooberDad's picture

I want all children in my home to know that it is a safe place to share and disscuss whatever they want. but will encourage them to only share with "safe people"

Strategic sharing...

Heibenstein's picture

Is necassary because we (people) are a collection of not just DNA but experience as well. And it his likely that other people in the world have had the exact same experience we had but have not been equipped but other experiences like we have to deal with it successfully. So through our strategic sharing they may be able to receive the information they need to help guide them through acceptance of the experience and how it can be used to equip us for success in the future.

Strategic sharing...

Heibenstein's picture

Is necassary because we (people) are a collection of not just DNA but experience as well. And it his likely that other people in the world have had the exact same experience we had but have not been equipped but other experiences like we have to deal with it successfully. So through our strategic sharing they may be able to receive the information they need to help guide them through acceptance of the experience and how it can be used to equip us for success in the future.

Sharing information

Stufflyn2's picture

There is a serious balance between trying to have the audience truly feel one's story and going too far in providing details that may hurt the presenter. As a foster parent, I would definitely follow the steps of the sharing circles model before speaking to groups of people so they (and myself) would not be negatively be affected by personal stories. It is my duty to protect myself and others under my care to be able to express themselves and make positive improvements in their lives and that of others.

Strategic Sharing

Talgen's picture

Our home is one that encourages open communication about everything. We want our kids to tell us what is making them angry and what is making them feel sad. We in turn relay to them what (as much as we can) information we have and how we can fine tune the household so that everyone feels more comfortable. Compromise is the key and being able to share openly encourages looking for a solution, in my humble opinion. It does become difficult at times because of the situation they were in, we find cracks in their 'stories' all the time, but over the past year they have slowly opened up and aren't hiding much anymore. As far as sharing with those on the outside (not immediate family) we do not as it is none of their business, unless it is someone directly involved in the kids life (teacher, counselor, etc). We simply state that these are kids we are going to adopt.

Strategic Sharing

jandcsmith2007's picture

I think it is important for children to be able to share their story but they should be educated in what is appropriate to share and what is not. We get questions all the time about the children we are fostering and soon to adopt. It's frustrating because people are so nosy!

Sharing

smittyar's picture

I think it is part of the child's life and they should share their past experiences and you should engage the child.

Strategic Sharing

scohorn's picture

Sharing information is so difficult because everyone wants to know what our foster babies have been through. People love sob stories and train wrecks... they like to rubber neck. But I like to talk about the more positive things, like how she has grown since being with us and what we are doing for the holidays. I love my kids like they are my own and we try to live like they are my own too. We acknowledge what they are going through and help them, but we try to dwell on positives and not negatives or things that make us sad.

Strategic Sharing

Ankromfamily1's picture

We have a different spin on this because we are currently fostering pre-verbal children. If we adopt them, however, we will need to educate them to possible responses to comments like, "you look like your mom" or "wow, you don't look like either of your parents". We've already gotten comments like that from strangers and I don't always know how to respond.

Why is Strategic Sharing Important to Me?

mmodlin's picture

I want my foster child to be able to share anything with me and to help them understand the boundaries of what information should be shared and with whom its okay to share it with. I don't want them to be ashamed of their story just wise in the way they share it

Why is Strategic Sharing Important to Me?

mmodlin's picture

I want my foster child to be able to share anything with me and to help them understand the boundaries of what information should be shared and with whom its okay to share it with. I don't want them to be ashamed of their story just wise in the way they share it

Strategic Sharing

epowell's picture

I believe that it very important for my foster kids to be able to share anything with me. All my kids love to share different things that has happen through out their life. Conversation is a great in many ways and very important when raising your children.

Although most of the

jncreech's picture

Although most of the information here is focused on strategic sharing on a larger scale, I think that it is so important to think about the smaller, daily conversations as well. Specifically, as kids are asked to do projects in school about family...this can create much anxiety and uncertainty about sharing, even if it is just with their teacher.

Strategic Sharing

Inneed41's picture

My 9 year old foster child has many stories to tell. I'm happy that she feels she can trust me with her stories and the assurance that I care. I let her tell me what's on her mind, no pressure on my part to bring up the past.

Strategic sharing

Jsgouris's picture

I am a foster parent of a teenager. When she shares memories they are usually good ones. I listen without interruption then after I ask one or two questions so she knows I'm interested. This keeps the conversation open so she can share more if she wants.

Strategic Sharing as a Foster Parent

maryblack08's picture

I feel like sharing my experiences as a foster parent will encourage others to become foster parents. We need parents who are willing to love these kids as their own so in sharing my story I hope others will know what is needed as foster parents.