Jay’s story

I was placed into foster care when I was 12 hours old. From the age of 4, I lived with foster parents that told me they loved me from the moment they finalized the adoption. For me, growing up was pretty easy because I had everything I needed. I always had the newest toys and gadgets that came out.

Though I was a timid boy everyone I met seemed to like me enough  Despite being generally accepted I was teased at school because I was adopted. In grade 4, I met a little girl in my class that disclosed to me that she too was adopted. We were fast friends and quickly became inseparable However, misfortune struck when I was approximately 14 years old and my adoptive family could no longer take care of me. They called the children’s aid society and I left the only home I had ever known for a new life within the system  My first placement was in a group home which made re-entering foster care all the more traumatizing. I felt very out of place  and intimidated by everyone residing in this particular home.

The worker who had placed me there reassured me, that this was only temporary and that I would be placed with a set of foster parents in no time. A couple of weeks later, I was placed in the first of many foster homes. Even though I deeply wanted to get along with everyone I nonetheless felt different and isolated in all of the subsequent foster homes I was placed in. I always felt ignored and betrayed by Children’s Aid, who placed me in horrible settings  that hindered my ability to grow and connect with others. A couple of the families I lived with even disclosed to me they were only fostering for the money. I knew when a family was only there for the money because they ignored me and didn’t care what I did or where I was. The other kids from these foster homes would be violent toward one another and even after relaying this to my parents no rules were enforced and nothing was done. When I was 17,

I was placed into what would be my last foster home. At this point I just hoped  I was placed with a family that wouldn’t reject me or  give up on me later on. Despite this crippling fear, this particular family became very fond of me and wanted to keep me permanently. When they asked if they could adopt me, as a young and damaged person, I couldn’t help but say no impulsively. I always wanted to feel loved but I was scared to go through what I had gone through with my previous adoptive family. However, I luckily developed into a resilient young man  and was able to keep in contact with the foster family that wanted to adopt me at the age of 17. If you asked me today, why permanent adoption is beneficial for a child  I would say that stability and being loved by another human being is magical when you consider the impact both these elements have on a person’s self esteem. I would also commend you on the important role you play in providing care for those who are not yet able to care for themselves.  I would tell you how comforting it is to know you are there to help other young people who could be in such raw and vulnerable state of development like I once was. My message for you all is to take the time and go through the process of adoption, because in life you can be that stability that one person needs.