Our foster carer Gareth has written a blog on fostering as a single male carer.
Before my fostering journey began, I went through the adoption process.
It took a year.
I was halfway through, at the start of the assessment process.
I wanted to know if I was in with a chance.
“I know it says so on the website, and I’ve been told multiple times, but please be honest with me. Am I really going to be accepted as a single male adopter?” I asked my social worker, who had many years experience across a variety of roles.
“Absolutely. It’s not just something we say. We really do welcome anyone that can offer a loving home. That’s our criteria.”
“Brilliant. So how many applications have you processed for single men?” I asked, relived.
“Oh, you’re the first.”
Following my adoption approval, I also made the decision to look into fostering.
As a single guy, society and the community I’m part of have been incredibly welcoming. This isn’t a tale full of odd looks and funny comments.
There was once, that I can remember. A friendly lady at the pool offered me some shampoo for my youngest. I apologised for my useless memory, and she said not too worry… “That’s a Mum’s job anyway.”
Her intentions were good. And I reminded myself that I was doing something extraordinary.
Instead of anger, I felt pride.
I live in a woman’s world. Not just as a foster carer, but as a full-time parent.
I’m not a dad covering school run duties. I’m a dad.
I’m also in plenty of mummy WhatsApp groups. Far from feeling out place, I feel supported. I understand how tough it is to be a single parent, to be caring for children 24/7. I get it. And I want to be around other people who get it too.
My support network is vital. I’ve surrounded myself with the right people because I need them (on good days and bad).
If you’re a guy, thinking of becoming a foster carer, my advice is simple.
Go for it. Make the call. Send the email.
The world around us has changed, and it is absolutely possible to do what you’re here to do (regardless of your gender or sexual orientation).
I’m not saying it’s easy. It is, however, totally worth it.
Find out more about the support that we offer all of our foster carers here.