Updated: Jul 17
Darius' Foster Care Adventure is a Book and Game for children in foster care, guardianship, or who have been adopted. The story discusses many topics and issues that are typically felt when children are separated from their parents. The game helps children process their own stories, needs, and emotions.
Darius’ Foster Care Adventure is about a boy who was removed from his parent’s home after they got in trouble. He is nervous as he goes to stay with a foster family, unsure about how he will be received and if his needs will be met. He slowly warms to the family and eventually feels like he is at home. He works through conflicting emotions, grieving the loss of his parents, feeling torn about where he belongs, and confusion and anger regarding his parent’s absence.
Related Post: Tips for Helping Children Adjust to Your Foster Home
The book was intentionally left as a cliffhanger – it does not say whether Darius was able to go back home to his parents. This allows children to come to their own conclusions about what they think would be best, offering an opening for a conversation about how they want the story to end. The game cards help children to continue to process the many emotions they experience. They could consider from an outside view how they thought Darius would feel and what he would experience.
Foster care/adoption/guardianship situations are all so different and multi-dimensional. Some kids have no memory of their parents while others have regular visits. Some know that their parents are working hard to get home and other kids have no idea where their parents are. This is the perfect game to pull my card trick – pretend you are reading the card but ask whatever question you know they need to talk about. Be careful to not get caught! However, there are LOTS of prompts generating discussion from different angles. There are plenty of opportunities for children to process their experiences.
Related Post: Children in Foster Care: Grief During the Holidays
This book is a way to open dialogue regarding a difficult topic. Kids will often avoid talking about their own feelings but may be willing to talk about what someone in a similar situation is going through. Ultimately, one of the most difficult aspects is not knowing if they will return home. It tends to be a lingering question that causes instability and a sense of not knowing where they belong.
Another aspect of the foster care/guardianship/adoption situation is that kids are all at various stages of grieving the loss of their parents and working on bonding with their new family. Kids who have been adopted may have already worked through the process and now identify their adoptive family as to where they belong. Age also makes a significant difference in the process.
In conclusion, it’s complicated! I can see why there are so few resources for therapists related to foster care and adoption. I hope this is a helpful resource that will help in the healing journey of children.
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